Wednesday, November 24, 2010

09 Trip to Jeri Revisited...Gaff Krew What What!

 Yesterday I got the opportunity to to fly the new 2011 Naish Torch 12 m2 and the new 134 Momentum.
Honestly I was caught by surprise. I had been flying a 08 Torch in NE Brazil for two years while living there and I was all about my kite C kites.

After I returned stat side, I decided to give the Helix a try in the waves and was impressed. They as well are wonderful kites but don't have the sheer grunt the Torch has. So in this revelation I figure the best way to show what I mean is to post some photos of the glorious trip we, the Gaff Crew took to Jericuacuara Brazil. This was certainly a trip for the books!
Day one at Jeri Kirk getting ready for a Shweet cutback

Yeah Kirk!


My "How are we fitting everything in here" face
Levs strapless raily

Speed Racer

  Chezarinos buggy Yamming down the coast.

The Gaff Krew 09 was an eclectic bunch of individuals all with an idea,  have a good time no matter what trails ahead.

Dave, Lev, Josephine, James, Kirk, Leo, Kelly, Astrid, Joe, Dudu, Alex and  Myself certainly all enjoyed this trip and the many more times we shared together.

If your thinking of planning a trip to Brazil make sure you do it in style with the Gaff Krew!!!!!

Check them at

Let the good times Roll!


Friday, November 19, 2010

Whats next for Meercat...

We are finishing up work here in St. Lucia and will hopefully be setting sail by mid next week. Our destination, Guadalupe. I've spoken to some local surfers and it seems we will be in for a treat, if we get some swell and wind. I've got my fingers crossed and always, feel like the wind will be in our favor.

This is going to be a special trip since Billy Parker, Matt Sexton and Alex Fox are all going to be coming on board to take part in this maiden Pro rider trip. Since we all came from the same area kiteboarding in St. Petersburg Florida there's no doubt about the good times that lie ahead of us.

One of the reasons I even got into this sport was watching Bill go bigger, faster and passing the bar higher than anyone I have, still to this day seen kiting. Matt and I were roommates our first year at Eckerd College and we got into the sport at relatively the same time. Matt was a Freshman and I, a transfer sophmore from Champlain College in Burlington, Vermont. Fox on the other hand was killing it when we got into the sport. At that time he was a young grom, throwin' down on the water & chillin' out at the beach with the crew.

One thing that must be said about St. Pete is that it certainly is a Kiteboarders paradise. Although the season is mostly during the winter months as long as you have a 4.3 or 5.3 wetsuit your good to go. You can kite in any wind direction due to the nature of the St. Pete peninsula and its surrounding barrier islands. From waves to flat water whatever your vice in the sport you can thoroughly enjoy in St. Pete.

So my natural inclination when I was thinking of who to bring on this trip was simple.
St. Petes Finest...

We have got a lot of enthusiasm for this trip and some pretty wild ideas to play with kites and the boat. I'll be posting updates less frequently since we will not always have internet connections while sailing.

One things for sure I'm sure no one has ever tried the sort of things we will be doing meshing kiting and sailing to another level.

Be stoked for the footage to come.

We will also have Will Bennet on-board representing Kite Surf Magazine UK. He was just Champion in the BKSA Wave Masters Sessions, Ireland. I'm pumped to see what he'll be bringing to the table style-wise and hopefully learn a trick or two from a master.

Here's a video of Bill and Matt doing their thing out in Hood River

the fantastic NA blend crew from Benoit Paillard on Vimeo.

Here's a oldie but goodie from Fox tearin up the St. Pete scene

Stay tuned for more!!


Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Help me help you and in turn help my sisters art project!

Aight so heres the dilly.
My sister is currently in France doing a simester/term studying the french language and art. So shes doing a term project and whould love a bit of the help you all and I can provide.

In a not too distant past, legendary novelist Ernest Hemingway once wrote a full story in six words: "For Sale: baby shoes, never worn." and I would like to ask all of you: what is your six-word memoir?

Mine would be: "Seek truth, never lie, love life."

Thouse of you who know me understand the importance of art and culture in life. Lets help Stephi make this a very succesful project with a great deal of feed back.

If you were not aware, the flicker stream on the side bar is some work I did while I was living in São Paulo Brazil. I was privlaged to paint with some of the most influencial artists in the Brazilian graffiti scene, this has greatly influenced my artistic style and appreciation. Stay tuned for some up and coming works I will be putting up as time progresses.

For me graffiti and street art show that the concreat jungles we inhabit are "alive" with colors and personalities who wouod not have been there otherwise. Whether you like it or not this is the largest world wide art movement of all time!

So help my sister and I make her project one to remember.

Cheers, and I look forward to hearing your 6 word memoir.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

A great day in St. lucia...

So today I got to catch a bit of the swell thats comin through these parts. Although I have a small board its still great fun just getting out in the water and play in the waves.

Here are my good friends Big Gigantic. If you've never heard of them you chould check it and get wi it. They kill live shows and are often crushin the scene with STS9 or Lotus.

This is one of my favorite tracks to get me pumped up for a sesh I hope you enjoy!

Find more artists like Big Gigantic at Myspace Music

Here are another two bangerz...

I Need A Dollar (Big Gigantic Remix) by Big Gigantic

Wide Awake by Big Gigantic

Make sure you check their mayspace page where you can get all their albums for free or you can be a G and make a greatly appriciated donation to the band.


Friday, November 12, 2010

Fresh Cuts by my boy Jay-O

Bringin back the good ol' sounds of my boy Jay-O. Hes been mixing up a fresh new batch of goodies and I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to share it with the crew.

This be that L.R.M album, L Ride Music.

Keep a lookout cuz Jay-O's on the rise!!!

Hope you enjoy...

For more peep his site here:

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

An Epic swell hits St. Lucia

Today I got to see just how epic St. Lucia could get. We work up at dawn to get out of the marina and make some water. Since the hurricane the entire island has been without tap water and since we were under the impression we were going to be hauled out after the storm we finished up our water supply...bad move.

Thus we have been like wooks at a music festival since the storm hit a week and a half ago, minus the good tunes. We were in desperate need of water so we grabbed the bull by the horns and made our way out about a mile offshore to make some good ol' fresh water.

While we were going out I figured it was a perfect time to do a little fishing. Having been marina locked for the past few weeks it was certainly nice to be out at sea again and in Meercats element. 

Although it was prime time, the sun was rising, the water was clear the fish were not biting... 


I was stoked to try out the hammock my sister ever so kindly lent to me on the bow of the boat. I attached the ENO hammock to the genoa and mast. A perfect location since if you flip around cacoon style your looking through the trampoline and into the crystalline waters below. 

As the boat rocked back and forth so did I in my hammock. At times I though I was going to do a complete 360 with the momentum the hammock was generating, or break the slap strap and come face down on either the deck or the trampoline both would not be of ideal preference. 

Good thing nit her of the possibilities actually occurred and I was left enjoying the rocking of the boat. 

We knew we would be in the dock for a while having work done so we filled up the water tank until she overflowed and made our way back to the dock. Coming in I knew it would be a good day to surf even though I wouldn't be able to kite, since we were in the leeward side of the island.

Jammin' out to some 90's underground hip-hop, Mos Def, Common, Kweli and Gang Starr I got pumped up for the surf session that was to follow our arrival. While reading "A Long Strange Trip" by Dennis Mcanally...conflicting styles No Way!
The Dead are the shiznit and reading about them to hip-hop really worked. Don't believe me give it a try.

Hopping into the dinghy I made my way out of rodent bay and scoped out the conditions. 

It was going to be a special session.

Prepping the dingy I got my Vibram Fivefinger shoes, 5'8" Naish fish and hit the channel. So stoked I was practically shaking with yammage. I made my way over to Sandals an all inclusive resort where I should have gotten a cocktail but decided to hit the waves first.

Sitting on the rocks puttin' on my Vibrams I realized this was a legit swell with over head+ waves and a serious riptide, not to mention the fact that I was jumpin' in on jagged rocks... I was solo. 


Swimming out I instantly came to terms that I need to do more surfing without the kite. It is not an easy task just making it out past the break and this took me a good ten minutes having not surfed in quite a long time and especially in good waves. The waves that I had caught thus far were chest high with the occasional head high.

Alright, so here she comes, nothing but mother nature, my board and me. Let's do this! As the wave approached I began paddling my ass off with each stroke I could feel myself gaining momentum for the drop. And as I looked back to see if I was in the right place, nope I was in too deep. The feeling of having your feet come up behind you and become the wave is priceless. I became the wave and entered the washing machine.

Gaining my breath I began the arduous paddle back into the line up. The feeling of being alone in the epic force of mother nature is a glorious feeling. Aight, so now that I'm in the right spot... I guess. I knew this was show time and I had better bring my A game cuz as of now the score was:

 mother nature 1 Oli 0

I had to change this game. And with the next wave I scored it was clear I was gonna have a good day. Paddling in I catch the drop zone and plant my feet in for a ride. The rush from the initial drop in makes me look around my shoulder and realize yeah this is over my head. With a smooth bottom turn I approach the face a bit off balance I didn't manage to pull off the cutback but I knew it could be done.  Making the score:

Mother nature 1 Oli 1/2

Not too legit and to make it worse I was beat. I decided to come in and get some grub, n a brew. I paddled back to the rocks I had jumped in from and tried to think of the best way to approach the mess that was before me. 

After a few attempts and a few cuts and scrapes I managed to get myself onto the jagged edges and up to a safe place. I sat there admiring the sheer beauty of the rough sea and headed back to the meercat.

Sitting on her stern Susy asked how the waves were and I told her "Epic" with that Ged came out of his slumber and asked the same question and I replied the same and when he asked if I would want to take the dingy straight to the break, my reply was simple...

"Hell yeah!!"

And off I went on round two. This session would prove to be much more beneficial to my game. And a bit bigger. 

Susy decided to join me in the water and get a close up view of the breaking waves. It's funny I was literally there maybe an hour before alone and now the break was packed with local surfers. 

Killin' it!

I got into the line up and prepped myself mentally for a win. Watching the swell approach I decided I would go for the second one in the set. Good choice, I paddled again with all my might and looking down the face stood up on my board and rode out, bottom turn, Bam! Cutback steez into the next bottom turn where the wave lost it's force and mushed out. 

Making my way back I found Susy and she was all good so I proceeded to wait for the next opportunity to crush. That I did, this next wave was big I paddled in and hopped up on zi board flying down a perfect Caribbean wave this time it closed out but I got a sweet ride nonetheless. At this point I could feel my arms turning into green eggs and yams and decided to make my way back to the dinghy where Ged was waiting patiently. I was so stoked I'm pretty sure the stoke was seeping out of my ears. 

Looking at Susy and Ged I asked them if they were down for a happy hour celebration at Sandals, damb right they were. But being a all inclusive resort we were quickly spotted by the forces that be and the man came down asking us to please leave their precious establishment. 

Oh well. I'm here now at IGY marina at The Boardwalk enjoying my happy hour pre paid Pitons.

Hope you all enjoyed this epic session and this will certainly not be the last.



Sunday, November 7, 2010

Green Flashes and The Clementines

The other day Susy, Ged and I decided to do a little dinghy wakeboarding so we shot out of Rodney Bay planning to yam out in front of Reduit Beach. as we were approaching the end of the channel I turned on the GoPro Camera and was filming some locals playing on a monohull sailboat. They were hanging off the side while they jibbed and havin' a good time.

I was looking at the sailboat and the scenery of St. Lucia. While I was looking at the darker backdrop in front of me Ged exclaimed that the sunset looked like it was ripe for a green flash.

Yeah Right, how many times in my life have I sat out on 2003 Gulf Way telling someone to look close and just maybe they will see a green flash... many.

I honestly have always thought it was a beach legend. I mean I thought I had seen it before but I was never really sure.

I looked over to the sunset I pointed the Gopro in the same direction seeing if it could capture the fleeting sunset as it immersed itself beneath the horizon. As it had its last glimps that we all know very well this burst of green flashed before us...

It didn't just flash quickly either it sat there for a good second+ while I stared in disbelief. I was in shock I couldn't contain myself. Looking back at Ged and Susy they also saw it just as well as I did and we confirmed.

"Yes this was REAL"

I've seen a great number of sunsets and to see a G.F. here in St. Lucia was quite special. Now i looked back at the camera still buggin' out and checked that it was on.


Dope so we should have footage of the green flash when we get back to Meercat. Something inside me was saying that even though I filmed it, it probably wouldn't look like a G.F. since cameras rarely capture the colors and brightness we see.

We rode for a bit until it was too dark to see and headed back to the boat. Talking about how cool it would be to see it when we got back we were all pretty anxiouse to see what came out.


Since I was looking at the dark backdrop that the sun was shinning on when I looked over to the sunset the camera was adjusting the exposure while the G.F. went down.

I knew it, the footage was priceless even though I'm buggin out cursing you can tell in all of our reactions we witnessed something wild.

My advice to anyone who is going to try and film a green flash... keep your camera still and pointed directly at the sunset. I should have known.

On another note, I'm going to start putting up some of my friends that are musicians who are doing some pretty amazing things musically. Music is an integral part of my life and even though I cant play anything I sure know good music when I hear it.

Andrew Marr is a good friend of mine who used to provide some of the best yams in high school with a group called "djehli" Now livin out in the Sunshine State he's rockin' out with his new group "The Clementines", here are a couple of tracks fresh out the studio.

I Would Die To Be by AndrewMarr

Up we Go by AndrewMarr

Stay tuned for more to come!!!


Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Hurricane Tomas hits the Meercat

There is never a dull moment onboard Meercat. We watched NOAA diligently as the tropical depression organised into a tropical storm and with the ferocity of a metro train flyin through a subway station, it then formed into a category 1 hurricane as it approached St. Lucia.

We prepared ourselves for the perfect storm...

It was a stroke of good luck that we had not been hauled out when we were intended to be, since this would have been a much more dangerous position to be in. At first we were confused that they pushed our haul out date back a week, as we watched the storm form in the atlantic it all became very clear. The best place to be in a bad storm is tied up to the dock. Even though if a storm serge of more than 3 feet came through we would have been floating attached to the entire dock... no good.

The serge never came through and we were spared on that aspect.

We secured the Meercat using close to 15 independent anchors. We did this while the front closed in during the early hours of the morning. It was crazy to see the marina fill up with boats and yachts taking shelter. We had been on this dock for a few days and were one of the only boats there and when I awoke on sat morning the entire dock was full. Not to mention almost all the slips in the super yacht dock.

Securing the boat "properly" was quite the task. The difficult task in this is making sure that all the lines have tension at the same time so when the boat gets pushed away from the dock the lines all pull together. We managed to do this relatively quickly making sure it was done right.

My pops always used to say "son, never forget the six p's"

I haven't and this is something we took very seriously while preparing for the storm.
For those that don't know about the six p's heres your moment of enlightenment...


Wise word of wisdom passed on through generations.

the marina was a mad house boats comin, noone leaving and the Island Waterworld shop no longer had any more mooring lines. Honestly if they were smart they would have seen this opportunity to make a killing with extra lines...but they didn't so we made do with what we had.

The system started with strong winds and rains and let me tell you if you've never experienced anything like this.

Its fuckin' scary.

The amount of energy was incredible I watched massive palm trees sway with a good 6 feet of movement, starring out the back of the boat was like looking at a snow covered mountain with a strong breeze. It seemed as if the rain never actually touched down, it just flew across in a floating manner. The sky was a dark grey that the suns rays could not penetrate through, only the deafening howl of the wind passing through the masts and lines echoed through my head.

 I felt a sheer sense of just how small we are in the larger scheme of things. Mother natures wrath is certainly not to be taken lightly.

Even though we were in the middle of a hurricane there was still work to be done and a good time to be had.

We saluted Tomas and cracked open a round of Beers. What a better way to ease the tension than with a cold brew and a good laugh.

Thats when I decided this would be a great time to sit down and edit the footage we have been working on since we got to St. Lucia. Since we were practically boat more landlocked bullshit, it was the perfect desision.

It got my mind off the impending danger and I was making a great deal of progress with the film...even though final cut is a bitch. Its a good feeling to put time into something and see it materialise into something great.

Being an artist is the same way. i love to look at a blank wall or canvas and see what I'm going to create within its constraints and when the task is complete there is no better feeling than seeing the work you've  accomplished.

But I'm running on tangents here lets bet back to the real story...Tomas.

We drank, ate and watched as Tomas devastated the island. I know now that 12 people died since there were landslides and rivers that overflowed. My heart goes out to their families and the rest of the St. Lucian population that was on the windward side of the island that took the greatest part of the storms fury. 

We were constantly watching the wind meter to see just how intense it would get. We registered sustained winds at 55 kph. doesn't sound like much but bare in mind that one we were in the leeward side of the island and two that there is a mountain that separates us from the windward coast. the island itself on the windward side registered winds speeds that exceeded 120 mph and a swell of 30 ft.

This shit was LEGIT!

I laid in my bed and didn't sleep due to the amount of movement we were experiencing due to the high winds. every time the lines wen taught i though one would snap. I kept telling myself to just chill out and  let the storm pass but as the morning approached i soon fell into a deep slumber.

The storm itself raged the island for 20 hours just for you to get an idea of its tremendous size.

I'm happy I was able to experience the storm in a safe environment but I am truly saddened by the destruction she left behind.

Still right now we do not have any water and the southern and northern parts of the island are separated due to two bridges being destroyed.

This storm has changed my outlook on life and drastically altered the lives of many St. Lucians.

Again My heart goes out to the affected and I will continue to help in any way possible.


A Little sumting...

This video was shot on our way up from Grenada to St. Lucia.

Although we didn't have much footage to use we made the best of what we had.
I hope you enjoy and let me know what you think.