The U.S. Open of Surfing winners have been crowned, the hundreds and thousands of oglers have left Huntington Beach and those who, as one wag put it, "painted their bodies with dirty messages and phone numbers to do dirty things" have showered. One hopes.
But a lasting image to go with surfers, waves (or lack thereof) and babes was that of a plane overhead toting a banner with this anti-Nike slogan: "Don't Do It."
Shapely young things also handed out "Don't Do It" stickers and, before you ask, no, they were not lost abstinence ring chicks from Placentia High.
Neither was it all an ironic advertising ploy by the Beaverton, Oregon, shoe giant that joined Hurley and Converse in hosting a U.S. Open blowout in the Shorebreak Hotel's Zimzala restaurant.
No, a genuine anti-Nike "movement" came to our Surf City from that other Surf City, Santa Cruz, reports San Clemente-based Surfing Magazine. There is actually now a bonafide Don't Do It Foundation that boasts this mission statement on its website:
The Snow, Skate and Surf industries were born out of passion. These passionate hands are what nurtures and guides the industry to grow on the proper path. We all have the power to help direct the course of these industries by what we purchase and who we support. We encourage you to empower those companies who were born out of passion, rather than those companies who wish to take someone else's passion down their own path.
"KEEP OUR INDUSTRY IN PASSIONATE HANDS"
OK, stop screaming!
Some may suspect the douches at Adidas are behind this. Actually, a May 2006 Business Wire item lays the blame at the gnarly feet of independent manufacturer Consolidated Skateboards of Santa Cruz.
"For the last decade, the sporting goods companies have been on the sidelines watching the action sports industry evolve and grow but now, suddenly, they want to stake a claim in this business because they see the potential for making a lot of money," Steve "Birdo" Guisinger, Consolidated's founder and president, is quoted as saying in the piece.
"These companies had no hand in building our industry and we refuse to let them take away our business that we, as industry founders and product innovators, have all worked very hard to build."
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It's all about showing the groms what's what, Guisinger went on to explain.
"If you look at the history of board sports and how they have developed over the years, it's always involved struggle in one way or another: skateboarders having to fight to legalize their sport; snowboarders having to fight to be allowed access to the ski resorts; surfers having to fight for clean coastal waters to surf in," Guisinger reportedly said. "Unfortunately, today's youth are perhaps not as educated as they should be about the history of board sports and how their founders struggled to build the sport from the ground up. It's Consolidated's mission to educate these people."
Indeed, but their edumacatin' ran into cold-water reality at the Open, where the winners included Julian Wilson (sponsored by Nike) and Lakey Peterson (ditto), while finalists included Miguel Pupo (who rides for Hurley, which is owned by . . . three guesses and the first two don't count).