Be sure and check out Part 1 if you missed it and keep an eye on the men's and women's surf pages at Patagonia.com,
or here at The Cleanest Line, for Part 3 coming soon. Also, stay tuned for details on Gerry's new
book Surf is Where You Find It.
If you like surfing and an intimate setting where you can see and
listen to some of surfing’s most interesting and influential
characters, consider visiting the Patagonia Surf Shop in Cardiff for their next event. On Saturday, March 1, join shortboard trailblazer and five-time world champion Nat Young at the shop, where he will share slide images of pivotal moments from his newly revised book The History of Surfing. Following the show, Young will have books available for signing.
Storytelling in any form has always fascinated me. Whether penning a tale, shooting photos, helping make a surf film or just leafing through a good read, I always become completely enveloped in the process of how a story is built and ultimately unfolds. This quirk of mine sent me on an incredibly fun ride as a writer, photojournalist, and surf magazine editor. The journey allowed me to meet heaps of interesting folks and hear their unique stories. My more recent move to running a surf shop for Patagonia in Cardiff, California certainly didn’t slow or hinder my affinity for employing the story telling process on a daily basis.
Inspired by his good friend Don King – who is making a documentary about his son who has autism – Patagonia ambassador Gerry Lopez recently participated in the Surfers’ Environmental Alliance (SEA) Paddle NYC White Water fundraiser to raise money and awareness for autism. The event consisted of the first-ever 28-mile surf paddle around the island of Manhattan and a benefit auction for which Gerry shaped and donated some surfboards. All proceeds from the event benefited Surfers Healing, Autism Speaks, NJCOSAC and SEA. Here's how the paddle went down in Gerry's own words:
[Gerry Lopez paddles by the Empire State Building. Photo: John Decker]
Autism is a dreadful brain development disorder that is diagnosed in many children today. So many that it is believed to be more common than pediatric cancer, AIDS and diabetes combined. Autism is neurobiological, very complex and little understood. It lasts an entire lifetime. There are no boundaries ethnically, racially or socially and boys are affected four times more readily than girls. Children with autism have difficulty communicating, interacting socially and are prone to repetitive behavior and rigid routines.