On stage at the Billabong XXL awards with two Playboy Playmates at his side, 75 yr old Greg Noll pulled down his pants.
While Noll was presenting Garret McNamera with a $50,000 check for Biggest Wave of the Year, everyone enjoyed “Da Bull” retell his own quest for the world’s biggest waves in his signature black and white boardshort. He then alluded to the fact that his original short style was being copied by surf companies and poser brands. But, patenting black and white stripes would be harder than laying claim to boardshorts themselves, so he did what any pissed-off surfer would, and mooned the crowd with his signature stripes across his bare ass.
It was not what many expected from a nice looking old man, but Noll is a real bad-ass and has a core perspective about wannabe fads in the surf industry. Here’s what he said about the trendy surf guitar genre of the 60s “Crap, all of it. That’s what real surfers thought. Dick Dale was okay, but the rest was garbage. We hated all that stuff; all the surf music and the Beach Blanket Bingo movies. It (The Beach Boys) just sounded kind of pussy to us.”(Warshaw, 2006)
Playboy’s Miss June 2012 Amelia Talon, and Miss April 2011 Jaclyn Swedberg weren’t the ones taking their clothes off this time, so they cheered him on along with the rest of the industry in attendance.
Who Stole Surfing?
Noll mentioning rip-off surf companies comes just weeks after Hollister Co. became the world’s largest (so-called) surf company, posting 2 billion dollars in annual revenues. This upset many in the surf industry who are dedicated to maintaining an ocean-first mentality, and an overall sense of respect to the heritage of people like Greg Noll.
Hollister aka “Mall-ister” mass produces kitschy knock-offs of our coastal classics, and waters down our sacred surf culture. Making shirts that say “Hollister Surf Team” is blatant rip-off of smaller surf companies who actually invest in their fellow rippers who keep the dream alive.
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Warsaw, M. (1996). Photo/Stoner: The Rise, Fall, and Mysterious Disappearance of Surfing's Greatest Photographer (pp. 46). San Fransisco, CA: Chronicle Books.