Local Surfer Has No Idea What Long Twin Fin Doing Under Arm
In an unexpected moment of self-awareness, easily-persuaded Toonalook surfer Gordon Gallagher has paused midway down the stairs at Toona Point this morning to ask himself exactly what the fuck this long-railed twin fin is doing in his grasp.
“Well, fuck me!” Gallagher exclaimed with a snort of amazement. “What in God’s name IS this thing?
“What, exactly, have I gone and spent fifteen-hundred hard-earned on NOW?” he giggled nervously, examining the almost-eight-foot channel bottom country soul twin fin, as if for the first time.
“I mean, it’s a thing of beauty and craftsmanship, no doubt, right down to the extra bits of stringer running along the fin boxes, and with this length and volume it’ll paddle into waves nice and easy, but what little critical thinking I can bring to this scenario is SCREAMING at me that I’m NEVER gonna be doing anything other than nurse this thing through whatever shaky redirections I can manage.
“Seriously – and I’m not kidding here – if I end up trying to do some high-line soul-arch crap, simply ‘cos I can’t break trim, I sincerely hope someone paddles up to me and gives me a smack in the chops.”
With a rueful chuckle, and smacking his palm into his forehead theatrically, Gallagher continued his self-directed tirade. “When will I learn to discriminate between function and fashion? Like – all the clips of those ruggedly pretty retro lads surfing quality point waves on these long-railed twinnies – EVEN I CAN SEE IT’S NOT EASY FOR ‘EM! And though they’re at that crazy-talented level where it’d actually be satisfying and fun to solve such a puzzle every time they catch a wave, I – unremarkable, harmless and easily swayed Gordon Gallagher, with my middling skillset – really should know better.”
“Dear oh dear,” Gallagher sighed, running his hand along a seemingly endless straight rail, “nothing but false promise and heartache here, I suspect.”
“Truly, this is beyond the pale. How many more fibreglass parlour tricks must I fall for before I wise up?”
Slumped against the wooden guardrail, Gallagher racked his brains to try to piece together the unfortunate sequence of events that led to this absurd-yet-irresistible board under arm.
Now addressing himself in the third person – perhaps to better find the clarity required to parse the story – Gallagher went on, “It’s gotta be Instagram I suppose. Yeah. That’s where you first saw ‘em, ya goose.”
“Remember? You fickle thing, you! One moment it was Thruster this and quad that, and the next it was like Simon Anderson never existed! Just ‘presto!’ – the magical middle fin disappearing act! Twinnies everywhere. First the functional little guys, morphing into, oh dear, this thing!
“And you fell for it all, hook, line, and Simple Ben sinker, didn’t you?! You saw one Boardporn post too many, showing those long ones with the round tails and the channels and they got you feeling nostalgic for a time in history you never experienced, while at the same time hungry for the jolt of novelty they promised, not to mention the intimation you’d be kinda cutting edge somehow.”
“You’re a good fella and all, but really, you DO know you fell for a marketing programme every bit as crafty anything the Big Three ever put out. Arguably even more cunning – commerce cloaked in disingenuous country soul. Curated to appear as un-curated and authentic as possible.
“Hats off for the ruse, though: On the one hand it’s a grand entry-level board for your cashed up clueless COVID gumby – basically a mal with a twinny’s pivot point – and on the other hand, to surf it well in a half decent wave, you’ve got to be a frothing genius…and here I am, neither of these things, caught in no-man’s land of my own making!
“It’s a mug’s game, and you, Gordy ol’ pal, you’re the mug.”
And so, sadly burdened with such self-recognition, Gallagher made his way down the stairs to paddle out at the point, and – correctly assuming a skyrocketing degree of difficulty on his backhand – is currently wishing desperately he was a natural footer.
// DING ALLEY
Ding Alley is illustrator David @maccatoons McArthur, (who’s actually really open-minded and curious about boards), and writer Gra Murdoch, (who hasn’t actually surfed one of these boards, but hasn’t let that stop him being an absolute kaaarrnt about ‘em.)