|ESPN.com: Surfing||[Print without images]|
It's the summer of 1992. It's 5:30am. Looking across the living room you could see a mess of kids littered across the floor, all begrudgingly awoken from a blaring TV. A very young Taylor Steele knew just how to crack the whip to get the herd moving. I just remember how good it felt to be so motivated to get some clips for the new movie. We all had this determination to surf better than our last session and to get that approval, not only from Taylor, but also the rest of our friends.
|Rob Machado, still relevant and ripping, even on a flat piece of wood.|
After every session we would come home to Taylor's parents house in California and watch the day's footage in one room, shoulder to shoulder. All of us with one goal, to impress each other enough to get that wave put into the keeper category. Not one of us really had any clue as to the impact these surf movies would make on our sport. It was very natural and simply seemed like the absolute best way to get better at what we all loved, surfing. And not only surfing, but getting to that place where you've "made it" as a professional.
|Kalani Robb, a foundation of the momentum generation.|
Push the fast forward button on your VHS about 20 years and you will see that same group of dudes in all different shapes and sizes. Less hair, riddled with injuries, maybe a few wrinkles on the face, but more or less the same dudes. What's untouched throughout all these years is our passion for the sport and our character.
I called up Shane Dorian today and he pretty much sounds like the same exited grom from all those years back, ready to pounce on his next session. The only difference is that session could be in the surf or maybe on the mountain somewhere looking for a buck to shoot with his compound bow. Kalani Robb has that ever-familiar sense of humor still in tact, but is surprisingly leading a very responsible lifestyle with a new wife and kid on the way. Rob Machado, well actually Rob really hasn't changed that much. I think he has everything flowing just the way he likes it in his life and his elongated career. I do think he needs to whack that mop off his head though.
Recently we've been been invited to surf in the Reef "Clash of the Legends" Momentum Generation edition at The Reef Hawaiian Pro. I'm particularly excited because it's at my home break, Haleiwa. The swell forecast is looking a little on the small side so we got our fingers crossed that something will pop up. We have surfed against each other so many times over the years, I don't think there are any axes to grind, but at the same time I know we will all put our best foot forward. After all, there's that need for approval from our peers that never goes away!
|Shane Dorian, still not afraid of anything after all these years.|
Now please, rewind your chunky VHS machines about 20 years -- before Gabriel Medina was born -- and picture Kelly Slater with a full head of hair. That has nothing to do with anything I just wanted to throw a little dart at Kelly! But I know somewhere even Kelly will tune in to see which one of us will do his generation proud and take this thing down. Shane, Rob and Kalani, you guys are mine! But seriously, where's that swell? If it's two-foot lefts I'm doomed!