Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Glass Beach

My friend sent me this link from Colossal in an email the other day, and I sincerely don't know what to make of it.

Photo from digggs
Photo from Matthew High

Photo via Megan

Beginning in 1949, the area around Glass Beach became a public dump. It is hard to imagine this happening today, but back then people dumped all kinds of refuse straight into the ocean, including old cars, and their household garbage, which of course included lots of glass.

By the early sixties, some attempts were made to control what was dumped, and dumping of any toxic items was banned. Finally in 1967, the North Coast Water Quality Board realized what a mistake it was and plans were begun for a new dump away from the ocean.

Now, over 30 years later, Mother Nature has reclaimed this beach. Years of pounding wave action have deposited tons of polished glass onto the beach. You'll still see the occasional reminder of it earlier life, such as a rusted spark plug, but for the most part what you'll see is millions of pieces of glass sparkling in the sun. (As part of MacKerricher State Park, collecting is no longer allowed).

Glass Beach also has a very interesting array of tide pools to explore. Crabs, mollusks, and many aquatic plants make their homes in these ever changing environments. It is very easy to spend your whole day poking around the tide pools and watching the busy little worlds that go on inside each one.

Obviously I'm amazed by this place, Glass Beach - it's beautiful! But at the same time, the back story is so horrifying, and the lovely, soft, worn glass fragments become slightly melancholy.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Arc: Lines of Flight

(Inspired by Brine Time)

'Lines of Flight'

Despite our feelings
and our needs,
the way of things
never really flows
in one direction.

They arc
north and south,
east and west,
bending and curving
in on themselves.


Time and light
smooth curves
clean lines of flight,
into the unknown.

We mould these
curves and lines
into our lives:
They hold us still and shift us
through the world,
earthly and oceanic.

The way of things
never really flows
in one direction.

Saturday, August 27, 2011


(Images from ASP via Swellnet)

A confession.

On no level do I get the surfing at Teahupo'o that I have been watching today. I mean, it's totally spectacular and entertaining, but in terms of it making any kind of sense or being an experience or even a concept that I can relate to in an at all realistic or rational way... I draw a blank.

So even though I am enjoying sitting open-mouthed as I watch these people take off on such crazy mountains of water, there is a massive bit of my rational mind that asks, 'Why? WHY?' Because I'd like to say that I find them courageous, but then I wonder if it's not just blind stupidity!

Having said that, I am endlessly amused to read various blogs where commenters ridicule those who pull back from taking off on waves that would most likely have munched them into the reef. I mean, it's a pretty rich call to make from the safety of your own couch, huh.

Anyway, I don't usually get into surf comps, but this one has been pretty compelling. I mean, wowsers!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Mariachi El Bronx

When punk goes mariachi...

Of course, I can't really post anything mariachi-related without also posting this clip now, can I!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

4-6' and clean

Sunday afternoon at my bus stop, conditions were almost perfect....

If only it was water!

Friday, August 19, 2011

She goes alright...

I could never tire of watching Isabelle Braly surf.

This gorgeous photo is from Nathan Oldfield's lovely blog, Look&Sea.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

El Mar, Mi Alma

I don't know much about this film, El Mar, Mi Alma. But going by this clip I am looking forward to finding out more. Whatever the case, I won't have to wait long...

'El Mar, Mi Alma', coming soon.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Walk, skate, roll to the city (or Toowong).

I came across this sign as I was walking to the markets in West End this morning. It's directing non-motorised, non-cycling traffic along the river around some post-floods works. The cycle/footpath along the river got pretty decimated during all of that, so they're taking the opportunity to make some sections a bit more user friendly. I walk past it all the time, so I'm not sure why I haven't noticed it before - I've never seen another one like it.

They're three such disconnected graphics though. Almost like they're from different decades of design - 60s, 80s, 90s is my guess. How great is the little skater. Looks like she's mid-flight, or about the launch off some stairs or something!

Yeah Brisbane.

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Do women surf much?

Because I know so little about it (i.e. nothing at all) this surfing stuff fascinates me… Excuse my naïve question, but do women surf much? Is it a male-dominated thing?

This comment appeared at the bottom of one of petebowes’ beautifully written and amusing posts the other day, and I can’t really figure out whether I’m shocked, upset or kind of flattered by this question. I can’t figure out whether it’s an indictment on the ways that women are almost invisible in representations of surfing both in Australia and beyond, whether I’m sad because apparently so few women surf that they escape the notice not only of surfing culture but also of Australian beach-goers, or whether this is evidence that women are the new counter-culture of surfing: edgy, underground and unknown.

What I do know is, and what I like to say in response is that yes, women surf much. Also, yes, surfing is male-dominated, but that despite this women are a vibrant, enthusiastic and dedicated membership of surfing contributing along with the guys to the ways it is growing, developing and changing into the 21st century.

The short answer: women surf.

Sunday, August 07, 2011

More books less bombs.

Another piece of art that is not only thoughtful and gently political, but is beautiful as well.

In four beautifully typeset words, johnny&stacie capture so much of what is central within my own politics and aspirations. Historically books have been burned, outlawed, banned as political, threatening and shocking. They are difficult to produce, but are easy to literally and symbolically destroy.

For me, this statement - more books less bombs - is not necessarily about school or schooling, but is about education and broad thinking. What is particularly clever about the term 'books' here is that books today are about more than words on a page, but can be visual, colourful, artistic, aural and tactile. They can be hard-copy of course, but are also growing as an online, electronic resource too, which is allowing the growth of whole new multi-media options and imaginations. In this way, books evolve as educational, pleasurable and political resources as their boundaries and edges get blurred.

I love books. And I love this poster.

Monday, August 01, 2011

Surf film stoke!

This weekend, I decided to take it a bit easy. I only worked a little and the work I did, I did from home. I drank a lot of wine and coffee, sat in the sun, met friends at the markets and picked up a dress I had on lay-by. It was wonderful. At one stage, I even found myself with a little extra time on my hands, so I pulled out my copy of Dear & Yonder and watched it, and realised that I'd forgotten how much surf films can be!

I forgot how much pleasure there is to be derived from watching footage of waves and boards and bodies and fun and colour and light and surfing. I'd forgotten how the feelings and memories and longing that this can all bring to the surface. I'd forgotten how nice it is see great footage of great surfing. Before I realised it, I'd sat through the whole thing!

So I'm back to being stoked on surf films (again).

And then I saw that Lorene Carpentier's film, Oceanides, has finally been released! I have been particularly excited about this film, so I bought that too!

And now not only do I have two new films on the ways, but I can look forward to things other than bills in the mail!

Then today, over at Ten Piggies Over, I came across this fun looking film...

Apparently, when it rains (surf films) it pours!