Australian Life Insurance – Unique Aspects That Determine Premiums

Actuaries are professionals tasked with the job of identifying the rates of premiums for Australian life insurance. They do this based upon such aspects as rate of interest and death data. Such factors apply to all insurance covers in general. Nevertheless, other one-of-a-kind factors might apply to specific insurance policies or particular people.

I Higher Number Of Claims Leading To Higher Premiums

Although there has actually been robust growth within the insurance market (The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) has just recently reported an increase of approximately 12 % of industry premiums, from $42.1 billion in 2012 to $47.2 billion in 2013), numerous insurance providers have also experienced an even greater number of total claims (AMP reports that insurance claims have more than tripled from $14 million in 2012 to $49 million in 2013, whereas TAL’s provisions and claims grew by a margin of 23 % to $1.5 billion). This unavoidably indicates that the insurance covers vulnerable to high claims would be re-priced.


The reasoning behind re-pricing high-claim policies is because such covers are considered to have higher threat. For that reason, to stay clear of bankrupting the insurance company with excessive claim payments, the insurance premiums would merely be enhanced.

II More Lapses Spurring Lowered Premium Rates

In the year 2013, numerous insurance suppliers reported some level of lapses. Especially, Clear View reported $100,000 worth of lapses, whereas Suncorp had an even greater quantity of $17 million. Essentially, a lapse happens when protection is canceled if the insurance policy holder fails to pay his / her premiums. This is essential consider rates of premiums for Australian life insurance.

Greater lapse rates would mean decreased premiums for the particular insurance coverage. On the other hand, low lapse rates would result in higher premiums on the afflicted life covers. The reason for this is just due to the fact that a lapse indicates that the insurance business no longer faces threat of advantage payment, despite getting premiums for a specific period.

To avoid lapses, make certain to just get insurance policies with premiums which you can easily pay for to pay. Otherwise you’ll wind up losing your cover if you fail to pay the regular monthly premiums. Fortunately, the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) has been pushing for enhanced prices of life cover provided by group insurers, which is currently occurring.

III Age and Health

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, the average age for Australians has actually enhanced by 4.3 years within the last 20 years. In 30 June 1993, the typical age was 33.0 years, but it went up to 37.3 years by 30 June 2013. This means that the populace of older people is much more than more youthful Australians, which will inevitably impact the premium rates that Australians need to pay.

Being older simply means that you’re much closer to passing away, hence a life insurance provider would set greater premium rates to hedge versus this enhanced risk.

Higher premiums also use in case of health problems. In fact, an enhanced risk of lethal disease is guaranteed to affect greater premiums by insurance companies. This uses with such conditions as cancer, wherein Australians have a 1-in-3 chance of developing cancer cells prior to reaching 75 years (based on 2008 research by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW).

Where To Buy Boys School Uniforms

There are so many venues to buy boys school uniforms. If you are a busy mom who do not have the time to spend for buying from local uniform makers on their location shops or visit the supermarkets to buy your boys school uniform needs, then online buying is more convenient for you do not have to leave work or office. You can also buy from location shops on weekends or if you have free time from work so you can personally see the quality of the materials being and most of all the kids will be able to fit the clothes right away.

When you choose to buy online, there are several things you need to consider. Yes, online shopping is very convenient, however, you need to be also aware that careless online buying transactions will lead to regrets and loss of money and effort. Take note to only buy from dealers who have high review ratings from the customers. This is one of the ways of securing your money. Most online dealers who are already in business for quite some time can give you the items that you need at affordable prices without compromising the quality.

Only buy from online shops which can offer wide variety of items. This is for you to have a lot of choices. There are websites which can even offer you more convenience by just letting you key in the name of the school and the post code so they can direct you to the page where the uniforms of the particular school are displayed and presented. From there all you need is to choose the size, the quality of the material and other considerations like the price offering.

Since you are buying online, you have to also understand that what may be written on the description and how the pictures are presented may be different from the actual look of the items. To avoid wasting your money from buying the wrong one, you have to be assured that the dealer offers money back warranty. In case you are delivered with wrong items, you know already on how should be done. Most dealers in Australia will allow you to return the items without paying for the shipping charges. This is just among of the ways to let their clients know they offer quality products and services. This is the kind of website you need to look for online.

Should you also opt to buy from location stores, make sure the kids are with you so they can right away fit the uniforms you intend to buy. Local uniform dealers usually offer you cheaper prices since they will not be spending for the shipping fees. Once you want to buy the items, you will right way pay for it. If in case also that the item will not fit, then you can choose other sizes right away. You will also have a feel of the kind of uniform quality and the fabric they are made of.

Whether you want to buy online or from location shops, one thing you need to consider is to buy the high quality uniform products for your kids deserve to be comfortable while learning.

Getting The Best Piano Teacher

The piano is one of the most learned classical instruments in the world. The harmonious and peaceful melody it produces is just heaven to the ears, and you can tell what a the player’s mood is just be what he/she is playing and how he/she is playing it. It is also actually a great stress reliever because you can pour out all your feelings when playing it, and listeners would somehow understand.

However, not everyone is gifted with the natural ability to play the piano. For this reason, those who are really interested in learning how to play it should get a piano teacher to teach them. The piano is not a what-you-see-is-what-you-get instrument. You need to understand all the basics first before you can learn how to properly play it. Some people may be able to play by ear but a good piano player should always know how to read and write notes, and how to properly play them according to tempo.

Though you can learn practically anything from the Internet nowadays, the piano is not one of them. Yes, you will be able to research all the theories and the basics, you will be able to familiarize yourself with each note and you will be able to watch videos that will teach you how to play different songs in no time. However, the knowledge you gain from this is nothing compared to when you have a piano teacher by your side.

A piano teacher will not only be able to teach you all these things but he/she will make sure that it gets ingrained in your heart and mind. You will be put through countless hours of practice, even though your fingers hurt and you believe that you can never perfect a certain piece. You will be forced to do practice exercises, which may not really sound melodic but will definitely help you have faster and firmer fingers in the future. You will also be forced to learn pieces that you might not even want to play. It might sound harsh but it will definitely make you a very good piano player in the future.

Now, not all piano teachers can do the aforementioned things. Most are kind enough not to discipline you too much but these will not get you very far. If you want the best piano teacher in Singapore, then you should start searching high and low for someone who has the aforementioned qualities. Not only will this teacher be able to help you become a good piano teacher but you will also learn how to be disciplined in your everyday life.

Learning how to play the piano from the best piano teacher is definitely not a walk in the park. There will be tears and anger, and many times, you will think of quitting. During these times, keep in mind that your piano teacher is only doing this so that you can achieve your dream of becoming a good piano player. Remember that the difficulties you sow now will reap wonderful results in the future.

How to Choose a Mandarin Course in Singapore


Singapore is one of the leading countries in Asia when it comes to commerce and relaxation. This article on CNN makes the point tongue-in-cheek, but it’s nonetheless true. No wonder more and more people visit the country as the years as by. And, not so surprisingly, people started to migrate to Singapore and chose to live a life here permanently. It’s not such a complex decision to make because living here in Singapore is a breeze but there will be challenges along the way. One of these challenges is learning Mandarin – one of the main languages in Singapore. Thus, here are ways on how you can choose a Mandarin Course in Singapore.

Your Schedule

Before anything else, establish a schedule. When you enrol in a course, you will need to choose a slot for your lessons and that will depend solely on your available slots on your own timetable. There are lessons that run from an hour or more. Obviously, if you want to learn faster, you will need to have more regular lessons. But if you are not in a hurry, once or twice a week will do.

Your Level of Skill

There are students who enrol a Mandarin Course in Singapore with zero knowledge about the course while there are those that just want to develop a better understanding of the language. The course you choose will depend on your level: beginner, intermediate or higher. Beginner levels usually have one-on-one classes while higher skill levels usually have the classroom set-up.

Your Location

Some people who plan to live in Singapore but are not yet in Singapore who travel frequently should go for private or online lessons. Mandarin is also taught via the World Wide Web through video messaging applications like Skype. You don’t even need to go to Singapore to enrol. Everything you need to process including enrolments, payments, scheduling and lessons can be done online. It’s really convenient for a busy person such as a businessman or a parent.

Your Budget

Your budget is also vital in the Mandarin course you will choose because schools that teach languages have different rates. If you are on a budget, you will most likely have to take cheaper classes. Generally, online classes do not require much expense because all you need is a stable internet connection, a computer and money for your tuition. Also, online classes do not ask for a big tuition fee because they do not pay rent. There only resource is their internet connection and their computers as well.

Once you’ve established all this, you can go ahead and start looking for courses that you can enroll in. It make take some time to process your enrollment because of the paperwork and your location so it’s great to start early. This way, when you’re finally settled in Singapore, you can go ahead and start with your lessons right away.

Don’t forget to read up in advance. Ask for the topics you will learn and help yourself out by doing your own research.

Where To Get The Best Laminate Flooring

Moving to a new house or renovating an old one is much harder than it seems. You will have to consider all the specifics of the house, from the roof to the floor. You will have to make sure that the paint and the furniture complement each other, and you have to make sure that all the materials used in building and finishing the house are made of only the best materials. One of the most important things you should consider is your flooring. Many people take this for granted because it’s not exactly what guests would see first but having a nice floor will definitely make a lot of difference in your home.

There are many different kinds of flooring, the most popular being hardwood flooring and laminate flooring. Though hardwood flooring is more durable than the latter, laminate flooring is becoming increasingly popular because of its fairly numerous advantages. For one thing, it costs a lot less than other flooring materials, and it is fairly easy to install and maintain. It may not be as durable as hardwood floors but they can definitely last for at most 5 years when used for domestic purposes. It is important to note, however, that laminate flooring is made out of plastic that is made out of formaldehyde. This may cause some health problems if not taken care of properly, so you should always exercise due care if you choose to get this type of flooring.

When getting laminate flooring, it is important to always keep them clean and dry. If left uncleaned, dust and dirt may scratch the surface of your floor and prolonged exposure to water or moisture could cause it to swell, warp, or deform. There are many brands of laminate flooring that are water resistant nowadays but it won’t hurt to always clean up your floors just in case. Laminate floorings are very easily scratched, so it is advisable to use carpets or adhesive felt pads under your furniture so that this can be prevented. Some low-quality laminate floors would gradually separate from each others and would need constant fixing. For this reason, it is important to get high quality flooring that wouldn’t give you such problems.

Laminate flooring can be installed by professionals but because of their easy installation nature, you can choose to install them yourself. In fact, they are so easy to install that you can even get your kids to help you do it. is a service that offers both professional laminate flooring services and DIY packages.

When looking for house flooring, laminate flooring may be one of your best options, especially if you only have light domestic use. There are many different kinds of laminate flooring, from low quality ones to incredibly good ones. It is important to consider the qualities of each one before choosing which one to install. Because of their ease of installation, you can also choose whether to hire a professional or just install them yourselves. Not only will this be a fun project for you and your kids but it will also help make your home look better.

Create A Flyer Using Photoshop, Illustrator And Indesign

The first part of onsite graphic design courses is the flyer setup. When you primarily conceive a new article you are asked for sheet dimensions, margin dimensions, bleed and slug dimensions. Also required is number of sheets and pillars and gutter size, all of which alter with each document. usually you would choose a benchmark metric page dimensions, some of which are encompassed in the drop-down register. although, you are also able to conceive custom sheet sizes. This will mostly count on your allowance and the limitations particular by your publish provider. It’s best to ascertain with them first if you are contemplating an unusual page size. But you can change the sheet size at a subsequent stage if essential in File, article Setup. A full register of specifications should be requested from your copier as a direct to the entire flyer setup.

Also required at the start is margin dimensions, bleed and slug. These will alter according to your paper dimensions and what requirements your publishing business has for bleed. A general direct of thumb is to permit for an A4 flyer about 12-15mm margin. For a lesser flyer like A5or DL permit about 5-7mm margins. And for bleed, most printers require between 2-5mm. Bleed is necessary where you have hues or images which will be published to the very brim of the sheet. These flyers will be printed 16 or 32 to a sheet, then cut with high-speed trimmers. although, because the trimmers are not 100% unquestionable you’d get a small white narrow piece at the edges of the sheet. To counter this we create a 3-5mm bleed direct when conceiving the flyer, and scale any tinted sidebars or images up to that guide. This bleed overlap will be trimmed off when the flyers are cut up, but it ensures that the hues and images arrive to the very edge of the article.

Slug is an locality usually at the bottom of a sheet which comprises data which will not be published, like fold brands, or name and designated day, or colour data. Since this data is generated automatically in a PDF, you can disregard the slug, so depart it at none.

The number of pillars is usually 1-3 on a flyer, the gutter being the space between those pillars. I usually depart it at the default and adjust later if essential. You may use this setup afresh in future, so bang Save Preset and it will emerge at the peak of the dialog next time you conceive a new article.

We would now conceive coloured sidebars with the shape devices, and add colours from the Swatches or Color panels. Text could be conceived on the sheet itself, or imported from a Word article, then formatted using the feature and Paragraph panels. And images could be imported. Any hue or tonal adjustments or retouching should be finished in Photoshop first, however. And any logos or diagrams should first be created in Adobe Illustrator, then imported into Indesign.

Eventually the flyer would be exported as either a PDF, or packaged utilising the bundle function. Which procedure you use will depend on the obligations of your publish provider.

It Can Only Get Better Part 2


On a recent post post I talked about how much a GROM means to me and how important they are to the future of surfing. Now I’m going to talk about ANOTHER KIND of grom that can also play a significant role in the continuing evolution of the beach life style. Please read on if you’d like!

When you say GROM, a young little kid with surf stoked enthusiasm and a promising future comes to mind. If you agree with that description, than let’s apply it towards NEW SURF COMPANIES that are spring up all around us. Much like older surfers, many of the mainstay surf companies that we have grown up with are looking real hard at their future in the surf world. As these MONSTER BRANDS struggle to either grow or maintain some sort of market share, older surfers can also struggle to maintain a decent surfing level and a place in the lineup at their local areas. While age and competent surfing will give you a certain amount of respect amongst the younger and hotter surfers around you, it still takes some work and adjustments to prolong a TRUE SURFING EXPERIENCE!

A start up surf company, much like a grom, knows no boundaries and can reach for the sky as they pursue their dreams of making a mark in the surfing world. Some companies will have rich daddies that will try to buy their kids future. Others will start off slow and learn from mistakes made as they work their way down the road towards success. Some might get lucky and be in THE RIGHT place at THE RIGHT time while others will have the good idea or product line but either can’t make it work or don’t have the balls it takes to lay it all on the line. In my opinion, what ever you do in life should be done out of the love and passion that one feels towards achieving that goal. Over the years, I have been fortunate to have watched just about every SURF COMPANY that you can think of RISE, FALL or EVOLVE to where they are today. The main key to success has been to stay true to yourself and beliefs and don’t pay to much attention to what the OTHER GUY is doing.

Some of the best that’s out there now are from NEW companies like RHYTHM and GREENLINES. Both are new in the market place and are coming from different angles and backgrounds.

Rhythm’s line is aimed more towards the youth market with bright colors and aggressive graphics. Being small and fresh lets them float out a more forward look. They can also adapt more quickly to a possible new trend or change of direction in the market place. The principle players that I have met from the company are young and stoked with that charge ahead attitude that you need to be competitive against those MONSTER COMPANIES that have ruled the surf apparel industry for what might have been to long now!

Greenline is more of a product driven company that is not bent on conquering the world. Their product line is smaller and more focused on function, fit and sustainable materials. Although the line will appeal to a smaller segment of buyers, that seems to fit their over all game plan. The idea is to make good basic board shorts that are made of softer natural materials supplemented with some basic Ts etc. to help brand the name. The folks at Greenline are a bit older BUT no less stoked to put serious watermen into their products. They are not really selling any thing new or trying to start or follow trends. What they are doing is putting out a solid product with a hands on grass roots approach to marketing. They are very confident that if the word gets out, and people wear their goods, the business will slowly grow and find its own niche. They could be right!

The above companies are just a few of many that are out there in the apparel side of surf retail. The same type of struggles AND opportunities await new board builders, shade, sandals, accessories companies etc., etc. These types of GROM companies will always be there to nip at the heels of the BIG DOGS! I just hope that as some of them grow and gain ground in their respective areas, that they will remember their younger days. Keep that grom stoke and drive. Most of all though I hope they don’t forget to support their local surf shops that helped open the doors for them in the first place.

The Seal of Approval

So! Every body has an opinion about the Seals at the Children’s Pool in La Jolla. Let’s look at the Pros and Cons of this situation in, as a good friend of mine always says, “A FAIR AND BALANCED WAY”! Then you can decide for your self which side of the Sea Wall you prefer to stand on.


On the side of the seals staying we have a boat load of good things that have happened since they have claimed domain on the area. The streets and park have become crowded with cars and people all trying to get up close and comfy to watch these cute creatures. The pictures that can be taken of the smiles that broaden on their children’s faces while observing all of the mammals crammed on the beach is awesome right? The noise and smell that emanates from this sliver of beach can’t be duplicated any where else in the world. Think of all the money that the T-Shirt hawkers are making with out having to pay any silly sales taxes to the Government. After all, the small businesses in the area already pay enough. Think how much safer all those children, swimmers and divers are now that they can’t partake in any of those activities near this area any more. Let’s not forget about the La Jolla locals who would have nothing to do if this bit of drama was put to rest. They would have to return to the mundane world of protecting the area from full time parking meters and the idle, homeless vagrants that on occasion try to spend the night in the park. These are but a few of the good things that are happening right now!


Those DAMN seals have got to go! We have the right to return the Children’s pool back into what it was intended to be. The stench of the seals and the constant barking is keeping more people AWAY from the area than it brings in. Since this pack of mammals has been allowed to congregate in this area, it no longer offers up that pure and simple hope of seeing one of these creatures in its natural state. Now they are almost as helpless as trained circus animals. How much fun would it be to go into Yellow Stone or Glacier National Park and see a bunch of bears or deer that were left to take over one or two of the camp ground areas? Do we really need a shark feeding ground right in the center of one of the most beautiful areas in San Diego? If you don’t think that hundreds of loud and smelly seals draw Whitey and his friends to the shallower waters of our coastline then you obviously have not grown up near the ocean. Seals have been and always will be in this area if they are left alone to share the ocean with the other mammals of the world. How many of these people who are fighting for seal rights, have lived in and around this part of town back BEFORE they were given the chance to take over this beach? As Joe Roper put it , ” If a few coyotes started to hang out at one of the more rural ball fields, and then continued to propagate and swell in numbers, wouldn’t Animal Control be all over it”? Before you could even blink, those “Yotes” would be disbanded and chased back out into the wild. That would be the NATURAL and RIGHT thing to do, as much for the animals sake as for the surrounding populace. If you are not an ocean person then you might have a problem trying to relate to that example but in reality there is no difference. What makes seals any more special or unique than any of GODs creatures? (Sorry to all the people who might be offended by bringing GOD into this debate). Should not Sea World and the San Diego Zoo be the place to go and watch seals all packed in together waiting for feeding time or to do their tricks.

I know that this can be a lot to ponder so take your time and read over the above words a few more times. Me! I’m going to go surf and hang out with the seals, dolphins and all the other creatures in the ocean. I’m sure that none of them will mind as long as I don’t bring out a whole pack of humans with me to displace the local populace with our unwanted and unneeded presence.

I’m on Fire

It’s been at least three years since I started to ride surfboards made by a company that would eventually turn into the Fire Wire brand. If you have a few minutes and you want to find out more about my thoughts and views on these boards then read on. If no, then go back to work and do what you are probably getting paid to do instead of surfing the internet!

I was lucky to have had a relationship with Nev Hyman from years of both riding and selling his surfboards. Nev is not only a good shaper; he is also very keen on making the best boards that can be built. There for when I saw him and some of his mates jumping up and down on a few boards that were lying deck down on the floor at one of the Action Sports Retailers shows here in San Diego, I had to find out what was up! The crowd around his demonstration area was pretty large so I let trying to talk with him go for awhile. I knew that he would track me down (as he has done over the years) and divulge his latest and greatest FUTURE SHAPES to me! Sure enough, a day or so after the trade show had ended he rang me up and we agreed to meet with in the next couple of days and talk about what was going on with his boards. Little did I know how much this upcoming meeting would end up affecting my thoughts and views on surfboards up to this time?

If you don’t know or haven’t ever met Nev than you won’t quite understand how infectious his enthusiasm can be. He was at the top of his game when we met. He quickly brought me up to speed as to why he was so excited about the technology behind the board’s construction. By the end of the conversation I was all FIRED up and ready to try one of the three boards that were being passed around to demo. Since the one and only short board was in someone else’s hands, I grabbed the 9’1” long board. Although I am not a long boarder on a regular basis, I have spent some time riding them. The board that I rode was contrary to everything that I was used to in an LB. It had BANNANA rocker with a tight pintail type of outline with a tri FCS fin set up that was moved way forward off the tail of the board. The nose looked as if it had been finished shaped with a butter knife but what the hell! Let’s give it a go.

The first time out on it I was sold! Paddles like a LB should, but surfs about a foot and a half shorter than it really is. The flex and twist of the board made it extremely forgiving and very fast. Solid nose rides one minute than full wrap around cut backs the next. Hard turns off the bottom that would project you straight back up the face or anywhere else on the wave you wanted to go. The well used term AWESOME pretty well sums it up. Now, I had to try a short board to see if the STOKE would carry over to that style of water craft. It took awhile but finally I got my chance.

A few months after riding the Long Board, the company Fire Wire had been established and plans for production of the boards was being plotted out. Mark Price was put in charge of the overall operation in the US and as luck would have it San Diego would be the place where the boards would be built. I was on my way out the door for my yearly two week Tavarua Tour when Price calls me up and offers to let me take the only short board demo with me to the Island. I had already packed my five boards for the trip and the engine was running for the drive up to LAX, so what was I to do? Why meet Mark at the freeway off ramp in Solana Beach and squeeze a sixth board into my bag. The loaner board was 6’2” x 18 5/8” x 2 ½” and a squash tail as well. Not my type of board really, as I prefer a fuller, thicker board and I can’t stand squash tails, as a general rule. We made it to LAX and down to Fiji no problem. The swell was rumored to be pretty solid down there with more energy heading out way. I had oh so many boards to try and so little time.

Well the surf was firing with waves at both Cloudbreak and Restaurants living up to their reputations. It was surf hard all day and go to bed early. My usual boards were working very well and the pre Fire Wire demo was just sitting in the corner waiting to be ridden. After a week of solid surf with more on the way I had to make a hard choice. Do I continue to ride my tried and true boards,or do I risk trying out that demo and perhaps sit through a four hour shift of pumping waves riding a board that I could not stand. With less than a week to go before returning home,and after all the extra effort that had gone into bringing the board down I decided to give it a go. On the first go out I brought the demo only just so that no matter what, like it or hate it, the board would be given a fair chance to prove it’s self. The surf was running in the 3 to 5 foot range with some solid overhead sets clocking through pretty regularly. I jumped off the boat and paddled over to my favorite spot to pick off some swing sets. The board felt short and narrow but it paddled real well. My first wave was a solid over header that had wrapped in off the top and was charging right at me. A quick spin and three or four solid strokes and I was in, or so I thought. The wave started to suck me back up the face and I hung at the top for what seemed like a very long time. Then the bottom fell out and I was in full flight down the face into the pit! At this stage of the game, digging the nose into the bottom of the wave is the most likely thing to happen. You might land the drop but would, most likely either have no speed to come off the bottom with or worse yet, just spin out completely. I was bracing myself for the worst. What did happen was completely unexpected. Upon connecting at the bottom of the wave, the nose flex up while the board twisted to let the inside rail hold in while the outside rail had full release. I was able to come off the bottom so fast that connecting into the next bowl section was not only easy but almost automatic. A few more pumps and the board pulled me right thru and down the line to exit at the end of the reef. Unbelievable! Was I just lucky? Not hardly. On the next wave, as well as on every wave after for the rest of my trip that board let me into spots and even more importantly got me out of certain areas on waves that I never thought I’d be able to explore. That demo was the ONLY board that I rode on every session until returning home and returning it to Mark Price.

Since that time Fire Wire has become well established and has progressed in both shapes and construction. One of the very few draw backs are that you can’t have a board custom shaped for you which means that if you can’t find a shape or style of board that fits into you normal dimensions you will have to make an adjustment. Every month or so Fire Wire adds a new shape or makes dimension additions to the existing line to broaden the consumers options. Another issue is that you are limited to what whoever designed and shaped the board was into at that time. Recently though, Fire Wire has worked out a deal to make certain LOST SURBOARDS models designed by Matt Biolis. I took one of his Stealth shapes down to Tavarua this last trip and again it was the only board I rode. Perhaps in the near future accords can be struck between other shapers so that the technology behind the Fire Wire designs can be put underneath the feet of legions of other surfers. My mind can only wonder how well a CI or Rusty shape/design would work with the Fire Wire treatment being used.

I could continue rambling on about more Fire Wire experiences both in the water and on the sales floor but those tales will have to wait for another day.

It Can Only Get Better

I’ve bitched and moaned enough over the last week or so that I have probably either pissed people off or scared them away. After surfing some decent waves over the past week or so the anger and frustration that I have felt towards the SURF INDUSTRY is starting to slowly ease. There are a couple of reasons for this and if you continue to read on I’ll tell you about one of them.

The first stoker is a spin off from some of the things that I spoke about in my previous post. If you didn’t give it a read, you might want to do so as it will help to set the tone for tale that is to follow.

AHHHHH, the good old GROM! As I have mentioned in the past, groms are the best. Not only are they the future of surfing, they are also one of the best ways to keep my surf stoke charged up. As I was having my usual Saturday lunch with my pal Peter Rubens and his 9 year old son Ryland, we were discussing his next contest that would send them up to surf huntington beach. Over the last few years I have watched Ryland grow up quickly in the often crazy world of competitive surfing. Although he is full Gung Ho about all of his events he is still just a surf stoked grom. Credit of course goes out to his Dad Peter for not pushing him so hard that the true love and stoke of surfing is lost and replaced by a wall full of trophies. Ryland surfs hard and he hates to lose but when the events are over, win lose or draw he’s right back out in the water. He knows the importance of surfing just for the thrill of it and I’d bet you a new board that he’ll pass that right on down to his future groms.

A few days ago I answered the phone to find another friend, Chris Rising on the line. His grom Noah has recently taken to the surf just like a duck to water (nice analogy right). While Noah has not been surfing long, his stoke is strong and he is making the gradual drops down in size from LB to Fish and now to a grom sized board. Being that I have a few kids of my own, an extra pint size board is always lying around waiting to get back in the water. As CR and I carried on a brief conversation, it was centered on borrowing one of my son Jackson’s old boards from when he was around Noah’s age. When I gave Chris the ok to swing by the house and grab it, in the background I could here the excited shouts of YES YES obviously coming out of the mouth of one stoked grom. CR and Noah showed up at my house a short while later for the board hand off. Now Jackson’s old board is a nice, but well used South Coast that R.P. shaped for him about 3 years back. It has been quietly awaiting some one to ride it while it sat amongst the multitude of other boards in my shack. I had one of the boys at the shop give it a good cleaning and set it up with the proper set of FCS fins. As soon as Noah saw the board you would have thought that he was eyeing a freshly built ride that was made out of gold or something. His eyes were wide open as he picked it up and check out its weight and outline. His jaw dropped in awe when I told him how Jackson had ridden that very same board down in Main Land Mexico on what was a double over head day for him at that time in his life. I could just feel his anticipation! CR and I just kicked back with big smiles on our faces as Noah’s stoke lit us up. After a few more words and a big THANK YOU hand shake from the grom, board and people were loaded into the car and they were on their way to adventure land. The very last thing I heard was one stoked kid cheering YES YES as they drove down the road.

Selling Out



surf shop


Just when you think that there is nothing left that can be stripped away from what little is left on the bones of your local surf shop out comes the knife again! I wonder if most people even know what a REAL surf shop is. For better or worse, over the past forty years, I have seen the rise and what may very well be the fall of independent surf shops. If you have had the kind of experiences that only working with a local surf shop can give you read on if you’d like. If you have never had that opportunity then you must read on!

Back in the so called day, a surf shop was a rare thing that existed only because of surfers for other surfers PERIOD!

Board and Body Surf

California Board and Body Surf

Well, I don’t know about you BUT I’m ready to put away my full suites and put on a spring suit! Although the water isn’t quite warm enough to go out for a long surf the freedom could be worth it. Even though the days are starting to warm up and stay light longer, the California wind can be a spoiler. If you don’t have a springer not to worry as they cost far less than a full suit and can be used for a wider variety of surf sports.

Let’s take a look at some of  these other surf sports:

o    Stand up paddle boards AKA SUP’s
o    Body surfing
o    Skim boarding

If you haven’t clicked me off yet at the mere mention of SUP’s than here is something to ponder. With any type of wave riding equipment it’s the operator and not the ridden object that can cause problems. Having recently returned from Fiji where I spent some quality time on the flat days paddling around Tavarua on a SUP with Rusty and my pal Jard, my opinion on them has changed some. The most obvious benefit from riding one is the physical work out that you get. No matter how hard you surf you still are using only certain muscles of your body. On a SUP not only are those same muscles getting  a work out, so are a bunch more that you might not have known that you even had. My stoke was just the basic feel of moving through the ocean and looking at it from another point of view, literally. I feel that from the new perspective it helped my regular surfing by increasing my wave knowledge and over all balance sensation. That being said, the view looking down into clear water and seeing the multi colored fish and reefs was a real visual bonus. I did ride a few micro rights for a couple of hundred yards which was fun, BUT I’m not ready to put away my normal board just yet. Of course if the surf remains as bad as it has been for the last nine or ten months I could change my mind!

Now, body surfing has always been a blast! For most surfers that was how you first learned how to ride waves and survive some serious poundings. If you like the freedom of not wearing a GOON CORD (unless it’s a matter of life or board) like I do, you still are body surfing regularly to fetch your board after a minor or major miscalculation on the prior wave. When I intend to body surf I will put on a set of fins and hit the waves in stealth mode. By this I mean that you can slide in and out of crowds and pick and choose all the little corners and bowls you could ever want. Some one drops in on you no problem. With the flick of your fins you’re out the back of that wave and setting your self up for the next one. And how many times have you been nearly or actually been hit while paddling out by some joker trying to impress you with his version of a Dorian tube ride or a Slayter cut back. When it’s just you and your fins you should be able to duck under these clowns with little to no effort at all. No problem with melting wax or a bulky board to load in and out of a car. Just slide a pair of fins on the handle bars of your beach cruiser and peddle your way down for a go out.

Have I saved the best for last? Not really. Although I have ridden a skim board before, it was back in the days when I still had long hair and ate at fast food restaurants. I have no need to go back down that sandy and painful road again. It is fun though to watch people crash and burn at your local beach break. Or if you up in Laguna Beach, track down that skim board crew and blow your mind on the moves and madness that these guys possess.

Now that I’ve clued you in on other ways to enjoy riding waves, give it a try! Oh by the way, as much as you might love to stand up surf, the above forms of riding waves are equally as pleasurable to those who choose enjoy the ocean in their own ways. Cut them some slack huh!