“Surfing Teahupo’o doesn't separate the men from the boys, but, it does separate the living from the dead!”
Greetings surfers. This article is about the "Dared-by-the-Devil" leviathan wave surfer from Hawaii, Laird Hamilton, who is a bone fide local. Born March 2, 1964 at the Jaws Memorial Hospital on the North Shore of Maui, Hamilton is best described as a suicidal maniac, who is the only human, apart from Capt. Ahab and Capt. Nemo, to have actually made the ocean proud..
Such is the respect which the sea has developed for Hamilton that it is possible for him (unlike wizards who can only call down storms) to defy gravity and summon up waves that reach proudly into the sky, allowing him to elegantly ride them to a satisfactory conclusion, after which he kicks out, allowing the waves to crash on the rocky shore line with the force of a GBU-43/B Massive Ordnance Air Blast.
As a top secret US government project Hamilton was actually produced to test the limits of the "perfect surfing machine". Tests using Hamilton have so far demonstrated that there is simply no limit with him, and that the only limits lie with the ocean, which can hardly satisfy the adrenalin junkie Hamilton has become. In addition Hamilton is noted as the only surfer who has not had a single wipe-out, which is convenient as he was in such a hurry to go surfing that he never actually bothered learning how to swim.
In his teens and early adult life, Hamilton was known for a violent temper, destructive friendships, and frequent public outbursts, including public nudity, urination, and mailing pubic hair to enemies (really, according to Wikipedia), friends and relatively distant acquaintances. From early childhood he was an incredible dare-devil, perhaps most famously recorded when he once jumped off the edge of the world just for the hell of it causing the earth to move 200 feet to the left and catch him - thus the wobble.
Entering fatherhood and approaching death appears to have mellowed Hamilton's personality somewhat to the extent that nowadays if Laird has a bad mood he just goes and beats the hell out of the ocean at Banzai Pipeline. Unfortunately this has been proven to actually have a significant effect on global warming such that the IPCC now agree that the best way to cool down the planet is to keep Hamilton in a good mood.
Kind enough not to compete
Like Alfred E. Neuman is the founder and editor for life of Mad Magazine, so it is for Laird Hamilton and Surfer Magazine. Even though Surfer Magazine ranks Hamilton as the greatest surfer in the magazine - he has never actually entered any surfing contest for fear of winning. The truth is that no surfing contest ever had the courage to enter Laird Hamilton.
Biggest waves ridden
“Sometimes I scream at the ocean, 'Is THAT the best you can do?' but so far it just hasn't taken the bait.”
“Oh My GOD” was the title of a famous Surfer Magazine cover shot (top page) showing Tahiti’s gutsy Teahupo’o (a horrifying killer-wave with sharp reef) risking its life by surfing Laird Hamilton.
Hamilton holds the title for biggest wave rider when he conquered Cortez 100 miles off Dana Point. The wave was so big it cast a shadow over the entire planet. Many physicists thought it to be an unprecedented Solar eclipse until Surfer Magazine informed them "No!! It's just, Laird."
Hamilton took off on his 23rd birthday, started dropping-in, and had already turned 26 by the time he reached the bottom. This amazing ride lasted 3.2 years making it the longest ride in history; and was the same wave that took out Poseidon. He survived that long by eating raw Jello Fish, and turning salt water into fresh water by grinding it with his hands.
Note: Since that time Laird has never again eaten another goddamn Jello-fish. He's not too fond of "hand-made" water either.
While other surfers pray for surf, Hamilton spends time praying for a force 16 earthquake off Hawaii that will generate a 1,000 meter high tsunami. In absence of earthquakes Laird alternately prays for asteroid strikes, and has even been seen trying to provoke international conflict in various waters in the hope that someone might set off a nuclear weapon deep under the ocean. In fact, Laird has a special asbestos surfboard ready for the occasion.
Basically Laird's religion is HUGE Surfism. And he is considered a realized Surfi Master. Apart from this, Laird is in a jam, having heard that in heaven the ocean is cold, flat and tranquil, but in hell the water is warm with perfectly formed 1,000 meter waves. Decisions, decisions.
Water-breaking legal case
ground ocean breaking legal case Laird once accidentally wiped-out, and successfully sued the Pacific Ocean under international maritime law. The wipe-out was retracted and expunged from his otherwise perfect record. Ken Starr, representing Hamilton, contended that, "A kook on a jet-ski caused the 'bowl' to collapse, thus unduly ruining a perfect ride."
Verdict: It was ruled that kooks be outlawed. Because the wipe-out was deleted from his record, Laird's surfing insurance was unaffected - but from then on he was required by law to use foot straps.
Laird Hamilton facts
- When Laird was 7 years old he went over Niagara Falls on a skim-board - and "made it".
- Laird Hamilton wishes Mount Everest was made of warm water with himself on surfboard at the summit.
- Laird doesn't ride waves 50 times better than you, but he does ride waves 50 times BIGGER than you.
- If Laird Hamilton ever rescues you from the jaws-of-death, you can thank your lucky “Laird Hamilton”.
BLOW YOUR MIND
- Sex Wax ad campaign blurb, April 2006
- Adrenalin Times, March 2006 issue, "Can our adrenalin become totally dry with over use?"
- Surfer Magazine Vol 13, 2005, Laird Hamilton: Did you know?
- STAR BORES Journal, "Astral Physics Baffled by Laird Hamilton Ride - cosmos plunged into darkness!", Vol iii, June 2008
- Future Science Yesterday, "lunatic surfer eclipses the Sun and Moon on huge killer wave" - Dec 2007