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Fredly’s Surf Debate with Tasha The Surf Class-ridden Instructor: Her arguments don’t hold water

July 10, 2015

ME: Why is it, if you’re nice to the people in the water they see this as an opportunity to burn you? I have found the people with the worst attitude are the beginners. ANd the ones with the foulest mouths are the women. And the ones who usually say the ocean is for everyone that as an excuse to ignore the basic etiquette. Do you just go on a tennis court when someone else is playing and start playing because a park is for everyone? Every activity has rules. And you also ignore the hordes of surf schools that are charging people to find “stoke.” Where is theirs? In their wallets.

TASHA:If you think instructors at surf schools find “stoke” in their wallets you’ve definitely never worked at a surf school. It’s exhausting. It’s exhilarating. The stoke you get from it is exclusively second-hand and you’re compensated for minimum wage (with a take-home bonus of 5 new bruises a day) and sometimes not at all, depending on the purpose of the camp. It’s sharing your passion with a total stranger and giving them an open opportunity to fall in love with it as well. The gratitude and fulfillment you take home at the end of the day far outweighs the paycheck. Plus, instructors are the ones teaching etiquette to the newbies ahead of time so that they learn not to drop in on you.

ME:I can’t drink your Kool-Aid. It’s not proven by the reality of classes getting packed and charged in surf spots. If your passion outweighs your paycheck, why are you even doing this for a living. Why not go out alone, and share your stoke for free. Because, it’s the money. You don’t need to be an instructor to do what you’re saying.

TASHA: Who said anything about making a living? Many of us volunteer our time for organizations like Waves of impact or the Wounded Warrior Project or help out with youth camps on the side because we believe in the cause, regardless of a money-aspect.

Instructing and surfing are two entirely different things – both satisfying in entirely different ways. If you’ve ever taught another person (particularly kids) to surf, you know how contagious the thrill they get from it is, and that’s what teaching is all about.

While a check for your time is a nice perk, anyone who works at a surf school and only takes away the money they earn from it is in entirely the wrong line of work.

ME:Yeah, civic-duty. You bring the template of organizations into the water. Instead of one-on-one in daily living. Yes, then you network and run press releases, and have pictures of yourself in the paper. Sorry, I respect more people to do hospice volunteering. But good luck applauding yourself, you can hang out with other people like you, and pull up in groups, because you live for groups, being recognized by them, making a living within and from them, and playing in them–somebody always has to SEE and HEar what you’re doing me. And here you come with a crowd of smiling people carrying Costco foam boards and being positive, and driving everyone out of the water who doesn’t match up to your standards by your actions. My guess is you haven’t surfed for more than three years. Sorry, if I keep my hands in my lap while people who are just like you, applaud your own actions.

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