Chutney #1




Do pets make you perform better?

I was looking at Instagram recently and came across a picture of John John Florence (current World Surf Champion) meeting the famous cats, Didga ‘The Most Talented Cat in the World’ and her brother, Boomer. They are famous for having incredible abilities, and have been trained by their owner, Robert Dollwet, who is a professional animaltrainer.

The fabulous furry siblings do things like ride skateboards, balance on skim boards, and also SWIM. In the SEA.

They also ride on the backs of their sibling dogs whilst they swim, and Stand Up Paddling is no problemo for these magnificent, bodacious felines.

That made me think about people who achieve great things, and wondering if having a furry companion encourages people to attain greater heights of achievement.

Kelly Slater has his cutiepie dog called Action The Dog. Seeing as Kelly has won the World Surfing Title eleven times, this makes me think that perhaps Action The Dog has enhanced Kelly’s surfing abilities purely by being near his side.

Mick Fanning, three time World Champ, has his furry companion as well. And as we all know, Mick is an outrageously talented, truly phenomenal surfer.

Lisa Andersen, four time world surfing champ, has a furkid that’s so cute it looks like a toy.

Isabella Nicholls, the body-double surfer in the movie The Shallows, has a number of hairy hounds.

Ok, there is no doubt in my mind that animal companions enhance the abilities of their owners. (or their staff, if the human lives with a cat.)

But the big question is: which animals are doing a better job?? Is it cats or dogs?

We need to delve deeper into this issue…and not only look at surf legends.

Stephen King, for example, one of the most prolific and scary horror writers, has included both cats and dogs in a number of his stories. Cujo, the story about the dog that traps a family in their car in the middle of nowhere springs to mind. And Pet Semetary featured a cat that came back from the dead. King is the owner of both cats and dogs.

Ernest Hemingway, the Nobel and Pulitzer prize winner and author of novels such as The Old Man and The Sea, had as many as twenty three cats at any one time.

A quote by Hemingway:

‘A cat has absolute emotional honesty: human beings, for one reason or another, may hide their feelings, but a cat does not.’
He referred to his cats as “purr factories” and “love sponges”.

Charles Bukowski, another prolific writer, was quoted as saying: “The more cats you have, the longer you live. If you have a hundred cats, you’ll live ten times longer than if you have ten. Someday this will be discovered, and people will have a thousand cats and live forever.
It’s truly ridiculous.”

Pablo Picasso, the Spanish artist, had a beloved Dachshund named Lump. He also had a boxer dog and a goat called Esmeralda. But Lump was the favourite and ruled Picasso’s house. Lump ate at the dinner table, slept in Picasso’s bed, and relieved himself against one of Picasso’s tall sculptures, treating is as his own latrine. Picasso drew inspiration from Lump
and included him in a number of his paintings and sketches.

Frida Kahlo, the Mexican painter, owned a pet Hawk, a pet Deer, and two Xoloitzcuintli dogs.

Hemingway, in addition to his 23 cats, had nine dogs, a cow and an owl.

So perhaps that says it all.

Kurt Cobain was a cat lover. Just saying.

Article about zen surfing



Attract the attention of a multiple-world-title-holding surfer and still look cool

One would think it would be a simple matter of wearing one’s skimpiest Brazilian-cut bikini bottom (those ones that look like you’re wearing your bikini back-to-front) and then shredding the waves, including as many reverse aerials, bottom turns and sick, deep barrels as possible. Add a bunch of waves that are so carved up that Freddy Krueger would be impressed, and BAM! You’ve got the attention you were seeking from the Dude who Rules the Waves.

Sounds like a wetsuit-sealed plan….except the sea these days is teeming with an abundance of radical female surfers, like Stephanie Gilmore and Tyler Wright, and the upcoming Sabre Norris – who would just make you look like an uncoordinated, wobbly amateur in comparison. Or like Stephen Hawking having a good day.

And then there are the Coffey gals from Australia – known as the Kardashians of the surf world. But that’s another story, best left to fans of the Brazilian-cut bikini bottom.

The plan clearly has to be adjusted.

So I started thinking about artists that are catching people’s attention all over the world. I’m thinking of Banksy, Andy Warhol, Steven Cohen….all artists who have captured the attention of the world with their outrageous, original creations.

Ok, so Steven Cohen was arrested for his recent Art Work, which involved a cock attached to a human body part. A rooster, I mean, before you start thinking weird thoughts. He was in France at the time. Just saying. I still have a very distinct image in my head of Steven Cohen in the middle of a shack settlement that was being dismantled by government workers – the red ants – wearing just a very large chandelier and extremely high heels.

Then there was Andy Warhol (the REAL Warhol, not the artist series surfboard range)(which are very cool and very clever – a silkscreen of The Last Supper on a fish, a silkscreen of a gun on a gun.)(a fish is a speedy little small-wave surfboard, a gun is a long, big-wave board). No-one can forget his Campbell’s soup cans or Marilyn-inspired screen prints. And the bad hairstyle. So much like a surfer…he even made a surf movie a long time ago.

Banksy and his stencil type graffiti, featuring rats (not surf rats, REAL rats) and becoming progressively more and more political, has gathered a large following. His true identity is still not known. His American trip featuring the artwork Sirens of the Lambs had a slaughter house delivery truck filled with cuddly stuffed toys taken for slaughter, resulting in both children and adults reacting with amazement (and horror).

Now those are all good ways of getting people’s attention.

So what about a combination of all of these? Surfing whilst wearing a giant chandelier and high heels, whilst simultaneously juggling soup cans and balancing a rooster (or a pig – they seem big right now) on the front of the surfboard, which would be festooned with paintings of the Last Supper (everybody loves cheeses, after all).

And wear a brightly coloured balaklava at the same time, Pussy Riot style, because you may not want to reveal your true identity to the one you are trying to impress after your performance.