Saturday, December 18, 2010

Final days fun.

So I have only been working whale watching trips for the last few weeks.  No more snorkel trips for me.  I am fully naturalist trained and pretty much an expert now on the North Pacific Humpback Whales.  Seriously, ask me anything.  Anyways, it's pretty much the coolest thing EVER.  I get paid to go cruise around the ocean several times a day and watch this:
A full breach.  Took two weeks to get this shot!

And I got two in the same day!

Leaving my boat on it's mooring for the last time.  Sad face.

Scuba Shaka!

backflip wave crash tide pool fun!

Under the Sea!

Diving cathedrals on Lanai.

Spinners at Lanai.

Spotted Eagle ray.

Down here it's better, here where it's wetter, under the sea!


Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Life of Late.

So here is a little of what I've been up to lately, since I'm not in the writing mood, you get photos!

This is Honolua Bay.  This is where I surf now that it is winter.  No, these are not pictures of me.  To avoid getting beat up for being "da kook wit da camera" I don't take it out there with me.  So, after I got out da water today, I took these.  You will just have to take my word for it that I really do surf here, and it was AWESOME!

Whale Watching!  Whale season is here and my boat is now the whale watching tour boat instead of the snorkeling boat.  This is pretty much the reason I am still here!  The whales are awesome!  I don't have any real great pictuers yet since for the first week I didn't have a camera.  Yes, I lost/broke another camera.  I took the last one too deep while scuba diving, it got the bends and died.  So I've only had the new camera for a few days. 

Don't mind my lame narration.  It's my job to be excited!

This is Lahaina Harbor where I work, at dusk.

So that's it really, whale watching and surfing.  Life is good.  And in case anyone was wondering besides me.  The Christmas songs that are played in Hawaii are the exact same ones played in snowy parts of the land.  There don't seem to be any tropic weather specific Christmas songs...the songs make me home sick.  But, Christmas in Maui is still awesome!  I surf everyday and it's December!  Sweet it is.  Sweet it is.  Aloha my friends!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Poseidon's Cannonball

Surfing is very fickal.  The waves, the reactions of 'local bruddahs', the tide, my personal abilities, etc...Read on.

(I know what you're thinking, but this isn't actually a picture of future old man Dallon.)
Recently, somewhere in the North pacific, silly King Ægir and his Goddess Ran hosted a raucous sea party and invited their friends, Poseidon, Amphitrite, Ophion, Oceanus, and Tethys. The godly party got so out of hand, and was so disruptive that they churned the seas into a titanic storm of Armageddic proportions, particularly out of control was Poseidon's giant cannonball! Thousands of miles south in the dead center of the Pacific ocean, on the most isolated island archipelago in the world, the residents of Maui reaped the sublimely powerful benefits from Poseidon's cannonball in the form of Double Overhead!  Alas, the past month here on Maui has been almost as bad as last January when not an inch of frozen bliss fell on my beloved Wasatch.  Not a wave bigger than a boat wake to be found...If I had a ski boat, Lake Pacific would have been perfect.  I don't have a ski boat though,(Santa dropped the ball on that one) and the glassy conditions have been rather dull and depressing.  There was that one little hiccup that hit the bay a few weeks ago.  Which resulted in Dallon getting his first tasty treat out of the Honolua bay candy jar.  It was oh so delicious.  But, back to the present.  Along with the cannonball swell came a small bump up from Land of the Long White Cloud sent to us by our Kiwi friends.  And for the first time that I have ever seen, my little breakwall got hit with a double swell.  Which made for some interesting and beautiful waves!  Here at breakwall they weren't quite overhead like they were up north, but still of a size to break boards and take off bikini tops.  So I had to decide between ripping my longboard or training on my shortboard.  I choose to shortboard...  

Tangent:  I like hockey, it's probably one of my favorite sports to play.  But, I learned how to ice skate well before I started playing hockey.  I learned to skate by going to public skating sessions where all skaters are told to go in the same direction around the rink in a circle.  Back in the good ole days no one had yet come up with the technology that enabled us to switch directions at the half way mark, this day I am REALLY good at left cross overs (turning left).  I am not nearly as comfy turning right.  Think Mario Lemioux, Sidney Crosby, Alexander Ovechkin when I'm going left, and Billy Madison when I'm going right.  (Be careful when I'm turning right, I might stab you with a skate...)  Which has also translated into my skiing.  I'm more comfortable turning left.  I guess I'm an amby turner. 

The point is, here at breakwall where I live, the waves break in a way that makes them rideable going left.  (looking at the beach, you paddle, then go left)  Since this is where I learned how to ride a wave, I'm really good at going left.  Also I'm a goofy foot so going left is just a little more natural anyway.  Today however, thanks to Poseidon's northern cannonball, the waves at Breakwall were breaking right.  I have surfed rights before, never with a whole lot of success though.  Until...wait for!  I rocked it!  Well, I coraled it! (as in coral reefed it...try to keep up) Ouch.  Coral is pretty to look at, not to wrestle with.  Did you know that as an adult male approximately 60% of my body is water?  Well it is.  I know because I just googled it and everything on the internet is true.  But what you can't google on the internet is how the other 40% of the soft gooey and hard stuff that my body is made of reacts while getting pounded by thousands of pounds of liquid fury.  Imagine this: You are a piece of public restroom toilet paper (you know, the "gross!  I just wiped with my finger!" should have tripled up, crappy, falls apart TP) and you have been sitting in the toilet getting all water logged for about two hours.  Then you get flushed.  What happens to you?  You get sucked into oblivion and you break up into tons of little fragments.  Ok, so this is how I felt today.  Every wave that hit me forced me to swallow so much water that the parts of me that are all H20 decided they wanted to return to the great depths leaving the other 40% to fall apart and crumble to pieces.  Right, so now you understand that waves are strong.  Very strong.  Add a 6 foot long piece of fiberglass and styrofoam and tie it to your ankle.  Just one more blunt object for Dallon to hit his head on, or..errrr, other things.  Anyways, for the first hour I was out of my league.  Have you ever seen a cat in a wash machine?  Neither have I.  But I bet that's what I looked like.   The second hour I finally figured the take of.  On one take off I lost my balance and when I steadied I was heading right and ended up having a sweet ride, so the third hour was when I gave in and just started going right and got hit with the enlightenment rod of "hey dummy going right is easier on a shortboard for goofy footers".  Light bulbs appeared!  Then got smashed in a wave.  I got about five great rides before I was too waterlogged and sore to paddle anymore.  So for the fourth hour I just inconspicuously floated next to a bikini clad hottie!  She never lost her top.  Regardless though, it was downright spectacular day.  Thanks Posiedon!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Just another day in the life of...

 To tell my new story, I must first learn you some new stuff.  Some key points are important to understand before I can tell of my adventure.  So, the first vocabulary word is mooring.  A mooring is just something you tie a boat up to.  For the purposes of this story, a mooring is something very heavy at the bottom of the ocean with chains or ropes attached to some big floating buoys that we grab with a hook then wrap around the cleats on the boat so it doesn't float away. Go here for a picture.   A prop is the big spinny thing under the boat that makes it go vrooom!  It's really just short for propeller.  So, it's a big underwater fan.  Got it?  Good, try to keep up.  It gets more difficult now. Bio-luminescence is when living things glow.  For our particular purposes you will need to learn about bio-luminescent plankton, click here to learn more. Here is a video that shows it, mine was green though, not on.

Next you need to know about ocean currents.  This one is kind of self explanatory so if you need help click on the link, otherwise, continue reading on.  Ok, I think that covers most things that you might need to know.

So...last night was just an average cocktail cruise.  Only had about 35 passengers on board.  The only thing out of the ordinary was the excessive wind.  After the sun had gone down and the drunkenness had reached it's apex we were heading back into the harbor when the captain asks me to come up to the wheelhouse.  This is where he tells me in a quiet yet slightly elevated tone that "we hit a mooring and it's wrapped around the prop".  Ah crap, is all I could think of as I hurried downstairs to change into my swimming trunks and get my snorkel gear.  I always carry that stuff on all the boat trips for just such emergencies.  To date I have yet to have a night time emergency, only day time get in the water emergencies.  So my heart was a thumpin' somethin' fierce for sure.  We set Tera on 'distract the passengers' duty.  To her credit the little dance show she put on worked wonderfully as the only person on board who even seemed to notice something was amiss was the little 8 year old boy who quietly asked me, "why are you going snorkeling?"  "I'm just going to make sure the dolphins are ok!" I said.  Earlier that day we had dolphins following us playing in our pressure wake and the little guy was really worried that we would run one over.  We opened the gate and I looked down into the ocean.  Now we weren't moving, the captain had turned off the props and we were unintentionally tied up to a mooring.  But when I looked into the water, it seemed as if we were going at least 10 knots (a little faster than 10 mph).  The current last night was ridiculously strong.  Later, even most of the captains were talking about how they haven't experienced a current that strong in years.  So now I am getting into the ocean during the dead of night, under a 70 ton boat, in a 10 knot current, a two inch blade in one hand and a dying flashlight in the cut a three inch line off a five foot steel prop of death.  I was kinda freaked out...nothing of it though, had to be done.  So I jumped in.  This is when I first noticed one of the most amazing spectacles I have ever encountered. plankton.  Imagine laying on your back on the clearest night looking up at the stars, now take that picture and you'll have an idea of what I was looking at with my face down looking into the pitch black ocean.  Tiny glowing lights, millions of them, were floating all around me, sparkling just like stars.  Honestly, it was beautiful.  I have seen this bio-luminescence only once before, from the beach.  But it took me several seconds to remember what I was doing under a boat clinging onto a rope for dear life with a knife in my hand.  I came to my senses and got to work.  To remain in place without getting washed away in the current of doom I had to ditch my light (tied to my wrist) and use my left hand to hold on to the line I was trying to cut through.  The first thing I noticed was that this knife was definitely inadequate.  So I surfaced to tell the captain I needed a different knife.  This one was a leatherman with a serrated blade.  Much better.   Back under the boat.  Thanks coach for all those two a day workouts, I really needed that lung capacity last night.  Anyways, there was so much tension on the line when I finally cut through that I got taken on a little ride, remember I was holding on to it...  That was the scariest part of the night.  Although sticking my arm through a prop that big with a boat full of half drunken passengers, any one of which could have thought it fun to try driving the boat and throttling up the prop, was a bit unnerving.  Not to mention tiger sharks! (please click on that one and compare their description to my current circumstances.)  Anyways, I made it back to the boat, (thanks again coach) just to realize we were still not loose.  There was one more line to cut, so back under I went.  This time though I held on to the prop itself, (I'm a quick learner) instead of the line to be cut.  I could actually feel the boat jerk loose when I cut us free.  This created the new danger.  About 100 yards away was a sail boat on it's mooring directly down stream from us.  So I had to climb up the rescue line we had been using and get on the boat before we drifted into the sail boat, I got about half way up when the captain grabbed me and pretty much threw me on deck, he then ran up to the wheelhouse to start the engines and take us to safety.  Aside from a few strange looks of confusion as to why their bartender was in a swimming suit and sopping wet, still no one seemed to have a clue what had just happened.  Sweet moves Tera, sweet moves.  I dried off and went about the business of the cocktail cruise.  Crisis averted, danger surpassed.  The only casualty of the night, was that mooring line...Luckily I knew the captain of the boat who's mooring we had just mutilated so when we found them to tell them what had happened they weren't too upset.  In fact, they were all just astonished that I actually got in the water.  "That's pretty #$@% sexy!"  I kid you not, one of the girls on that boat said that to me after hearing me tell the story.  Even though at the end of the night we went out in the dinghy to fix what we could, their (the Pacific Whale Foundation boat Ocean Discovery, Dad and Derrek, we went out on this boat last year) mooring was no good, luckily they had an extra mooring they could use.  Now, only a day later...I find that I am somewhat of a legend in the harbor.  I guess the Pac Whale people are quite the gossipers.  People I've never met were asking me if I'm that crazy SOB who jumped in the water last night.  Apparently it was really dangerous or something...whatever.  I got this!  Yeah right, that scared the crap out of me.  But being a mini celebrity is pretty cool, and bio-luminescent plankton...that's cool stuff!  So it was totally worth it.  How about a raise?  Anyways, just another day in the life of Dallon!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

♪"For a three hour tour, A three hour tour..."♪

One of the many...We see spotted, spinner, and bottlenose.

Yesterday, I was lifeguarding at a place called Mala Wharf.  It is one of the snorkel spots we go to on our cruise.  We'd only been there a few minutes when my co-worker Raquel starts screaming gleefully at me that there are...wait for it...dolphins!  Right behind me!  They were a couple hundred yards away, so a bit too far to send all the snorkelers out there, but we had an extra crew on board to help lifeguard so I paddled my board out to sea to swim with the dolphins!  There must have been hundreds of them and I was right in the middle of them!  There were three dolphins in particular that took notice to me, after all the others had swam away these three would swim right up to me, just a few feet away then swim away, circle around a bit then come back in close for a good luck at me.  I am not sure who was more giddy, me or them?!  It was only when I felt too guilty for ditching everyone back by the boat that I climbed back on the surfboard and paddled back to the boat.  The whole thing though was one of the most amazing experiences EVER!  We see dolphins all the time on our snorkel and cocktail trips, and once before I've been in the water with them, but that time I just got a quick glimpse as they quickly swam by.  This time, I could have reached out and touched them and it lasted about ten minutes.  It was awesome...and this is my job!

working hard, saving lives.

Speaking of my job...I think I am going to stay a bit longer this year than I did last year so that I can work the whale watching tours.  Whale season officially starts December 15, but they have been known to show up as early as mid November.  Whales and dolphins!  Yippee!  Also...I get really good health insurance through my job, and I'm still super stoked on surfing.  Don't worry though, the Utah powpow will pull me back.  I miss my beanies and jackets!

I have to show the passengers how to do it safely first!
Cindy with Honu.

It is now cruise ship season here in Lahaina.  This means that on any given day there 1-2 ginormous cruise ships moored in the channel.  Since I work in the harbor these days get quite crazy.  The tenders are back and forth all day between the loading dock and the ships, but there are only three loading dock spaces and it's pretty busy already.  We have to wear special IDs and the dock is just like an international terminal at an airport.  Security guards everywhere.  The average age of all people in Lahaina probably goes up about 50% as the population triples on these days.  The cruise ship passengers always come out on our snorkel trips and it's a lot different from normal due to the elderly average age, the diversity of languages, and the (unfortunate) decline in the amount of fabric worn by the portly gentleman on board.  But everyone so far has been very nice and they seem a little easier to please than our normal crowds.

Under the boat.
Did I mention I work on a boat?  And swim with dolphins and turtles and bikinis every day?  Well I do, and it's the golly darn coolest!
"Would you like a cookie?"

I taught him everything I know...LDS bartenders, that's a laugh ya?!
Know what else is cool?  Northern swells on Maui!  Seasons in Maui are measured by where and how big the swells are.  Today, there was a massive north swell and the Bay, Shitty's, S turns, were all going off!  I am not quite ready for overhead waves at the bay but i went down there anyway.  It was a full on party, people lined the the ridge above the bay in beach chairs with video cameras galore.  I'm pretty sure I saw Dusty Payne too...I WILL surf the bay this year, just gotta wait for a training day before I go out on a day like today.  Honolua Bay...look it up, it's a spot on the women's pro tour.  I did go out on my longboard today though, caught some of the best waves of my life! 

Cindy on the slide!

I do it all!
 I lost my camera, so these photos are all kinda old, but enjoy.   Aloha my friends, keep it pono.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Nice guys finish last...

 At the end of writing this I am starting at the beginning, as a guy who has not even attempted to dive into the dating pool, not even dipped my little toe in it in almost three years...I admit to having very little grounds upon which to write this.  But, I offer here my opinions and limited experiences in hopes of helping those to whom I refer to as "girls these days".  Please note that I intend here absolutely no hidden messages, agendas, or personal plugs.  So...

What's the deal with girls these days?  All I hear from the XX chromosomes is how there aren't any good guys out there.  I understand that you are sick of guys who are as deep as the kiddie pool, popped collar pompousness,  muscle flexing cell phone self portraits, and dates where you can't get a word in because he won't stop bragging about his car, job, six pack, hotness of his ex, and how good of a missionary he was  Well, let me help you out ladies...

The first thing we need to do is change your definition of a "good guy".  OMG he is so hot! ;)  NO!  Just because a guy is charming and confident when he first meets you doesn't mean he is "good".  In fact, the most likely scenario is that he is just good at convincing you he is something that he really isn't.  Of course confidence and knowing what to say is attractive, but beware of these smooth talkers.  They are confident and so smooth because of their extensive experience in getting what they want from you, which is not likely to be the same as what you want from him.  Some guys are jerks, it's science.  But don't fret, believe it or not, they are not ALL jerks.  The chances are that there are a few guys in your life that you would consider a BFF, or besty.  What are his qualities that make him such a good friend?  Does he do nice things for you because he cares and not to score booty points?  Does he listen to you when you are whining about that jerk of a boyfriend you have without criticizing?  Is he honest?  Hopefully the answers are yes, because he is your FRIEND.  This is a good guy, and I would dare say that MOST guys really are actually good guys.  The good guys though, are not the aggressive ones with the amazing flattering skills.  So you really do already know what a good guy is, it's just realizing that a good guy's qualities are deeper down and may take a while to dig themselves out.  This is also true, unfortunately, for the bad guy qualities.  There are red and green flags to look for that give subtle hints as to which side of the force he is on.  Don't ignore these!  Just because he hasn't been mean in a long time doesn't mean he is a saint now.  Even someone that has no idea about the story of Star Wars could tell you after Episode One that Anikan was on a path to the dark side. Don't make Padme's mistake.

So, second, you need to know what to look for and how to recognize a "good" guy.  Start with those same friends.  Chances are you are in the friend zone due to circumstantial events.  But, you never know where these could go.  Remember, everyone wants to spend their lives with their best friend right?  Now, there may be a matter of physical attractiveness here, let me challenge you to expand your standards here, expand but not lower.  It is one of the most important parts of a relationship, but it is scientifically proven (probably) that the better you get to know someone, and the more good things you learn about them, the more attractive they become.  So when you first meet boys, don't wright any of them off on looks alone.  The good boys are camouflaged behind their average looks, plain clothes, and humble (shy) personalities.  This is why it seems to you that there are no good guys.  Because the bad guys are the ones working so hard for your attention and saying all the right things while the good ones are stumbling over their words, are too embarrassed to talk to you, and may feel a bit insecure because they don't drive jacked up pick up trucks.  They're hidden in the social shadow...but they are there.  Avoid hot guys that know that they are hot, these guys are used to girls throwing themselves at them.  But they may be complete idiots when it comes to how to treat you. (italics added)

Third, how do you find them? You might have to put in a little more effort to find a good guy.  Don't get me wrong, I am fully invested in the notion that if he wants a date, it's his responsibility to make it happen.  But there are things you can do to make it easier for him.  Remember, nice guys may be the shy guys.  So, if you are even remotely interested but he just won't make a move.  Give him a big smile and some eye contact.  Try talking to him first, even a little flirting.  Anything to give him the confidence to make a move.  You need to help him get past that "I could never get a girl like that" attitude.  Help him believe he has a chance.  DON'T play the hard to get game.  The nice guys don't know the rules to that game.  Also, try changing your "places to meet guys".  Bars, tanning salons, loud parties, and abercrombie and fitch, are all out, gyms probably not that great either.   Try your friends, a grocery store, a hardware store, your church, in the crowd at a game or concert, on the ski lift, your place of employment, anyplace people go where they aren't already in the mindset of trying to impress everyone else that is there.

And finally, remember that you are not in high school anymore.  Who cares where he works, what he drives, if he's rich, if he can bench press a toyota, or what other people will think of him.  What matters is how he treats you, how he makes you feel, and will you be happy every day with him.  Remember what's really important and you'll find your "good guy".  I promise.  He exists.  My very last bit of advice though, is that this all goes both ways...I hope this doesn't offend you, but good guys, well...they are looking for "good girls".  The best thing you can do to find him, is be worthy of him. 

In closing, know that all I have said here is of course circumstantial.  That abercrombie model driving the porsche on his way to the tanning salon may just be the greatest, nicest, sweetest guy ever.  And that shy, funny, plain, nice kid may actually be the next uni-bomber.  In the end (but hopefully closer to the beginning) it's up to you to decide.  But please, until you've tried something different from whatever you are doing now, stop complaining that there are no "good guys" out there.  The "good guys" are sick of hearing about it...but of course, we're good guys, so we'll keep listening.  So for the three girls that I intended this advice for, I hope it helped.  Too bad I doubt you will ever read this.  For those of you reading this, you are married and I just wasted 5 minutes of your bad.  Now I must go, I've got a date with a nice girl.  She is a 6'8", full epoxy, Pyzel wave shredding babe.  We are going surfing.

Dallon's Guide to Staying Not Fat.

All you need to know about staying thin.  Part One of One.

First of all, eat whatever the heck you want whenever you want.  You don't have to count calories, or carbs, or grams of anything.  You don't even need to know what that nutrition stuff is.  In fact, take an online nutrition class in college with all your roommates so you can get the quiz answers from them and not actually learn a single thing. 

Second, you have to have good jeans.  Make sure you buy ones with holes in them so people will think you've had them a really long time.  And make sure they have tiger stripes on the thighs so you will be invisible in the jungle, Get really uncomfortably skinny ones too because we all know everyone wants to see you try to move in those things.  Don't forget though...crack kills, hanging your but out is so last year.   wait...crap. 

I mean...Second, you have to have good genes.  Try changing your mom and dad to get better ones if yours aren't working out.  Most government agencies and federal courts can help you out with this one.  Lucky for me, this wasn't necessary.  Thanks mom and dad for the awesome genes!

Don't worry so much about exercise, it's not very fun.  You'll get plenty of exercise from your everyday lifestyle.  For example: Brushing your teeth: shoulders.  Pushing elevator buttons: biceps.  Reclining your lazy boy: triceps.  Getting out of bed: abs.  Driving around the parking lot ten times to get the closest spot possible: calves and arms.  Ladies, toilet hovering is a great hamstring workout. It's also a good way to compete with the boys to see who can get the most urine on the toilet seat.  So just keep not doing everything your not doing and enjoy the benefits!
Eat super chewy food, like the fatty strips from prime rib, and charleston chews.  If you burn so many calories from smiling, think of what all that chewing will do!  Keep track of your chewing routine.  I find that circuit training of 3 sets of 10 chews with a one minute break between sets works best.  Don't chew too much too soon though, you don't want to pull a muscle.  Also, don't eat heavy foods like watermelons.  Those suckers are heavy!  You'll gain like 100 pounds if you eat a 100 hundred pound watermelon.  I recommend light foods like cheetos, doughnuts, cotton candy, and marshmallows.  Pick all that nasty heavy stuff out of your Lucky Charms and just eat the marshmallows.  Those are the lucky parts anyway so it's a win win. Don't be fooled by food that claims to be "light" though.  Light yogurt is just as heavy as regular yogurt, Bud Light weighs just as much as Budweiser.  It's all a marketing scam but don't let them get the best of you!  And on that same note, budweiser will actually make you stupider if you drink it, I mean, those idiots don't even know how to spell wiser.  Just don't drink it.  So...When choosing foods at the store, weigh them at the produce section scales to find the really light stuff.

Finally, when you get bored, go eat.  In the simple act of getting out of your chair (abs and legs) opening the fridge (arms and shoulders) and then chewing vigorously you will have added a bonus workout to your day.  Eat some cake to celebrate!  You deserve it.

All this has worked for me so I'm sure it will work for you!  I actually weigh LESS now than I did in high school!  Except for the jeans part anyway, that crazy tiger thought I was a tiger...boy was it awkward when I had to take my pants off to prove I wasn't...Now of course these are just basic guidelines to get you started, you'll probably want to consult someone else for additional information.  Good luck!

Oh I almost forgot!  Some sort of recalled prescription drug that destroys your ability to process food normally (accutane worked for me) is a great way to never gain an ounce. 

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Real Salt Lake. Repeat? Yes please!

 For those of you who don't know, I'm a pretty big RSL fan.  For those of you who don't know what RSL is, RSL stand for Real Salt Lake.  For those of you still lost, Real Salt Lake is a professional soccer team who happen to be the reigning MLS champions (check that out here).  This blog is a shout out to my boys playing for RSL.  I worked for the team during the 2008 campaign.  RSL has been around since 2005 and with the exception of a few rare moments, their existence as a fun team to cheer for has been quite dissapointing.  That all changed last fall when RSL went on a hot streak and qualified for the playoffs as the last team in and only after winning it's very last game of the season to secure a playoff spot.  They then tore through the playoffs and ended up beating the star studded and over paid L.A. Galaxy to become Utah's first ever major professional sports champions!  Everyone said it was just a fluke, that they just got hot at the right time.  Well, this season, those naysayers have been proved WRONG!
This year RSL has been by far the most exciting sports team for me to follow.  The Jazz were good in the late 90's, but this is soccer, this is my game, and RSL have been exciting no matter what sport you like.  So far they have won more games, earned more points, scored more goals, and allowed fewer goals than in any other season.  And the season isn't over.  They have already clinched a playoff spot.  They are only two points behind for the best record in the league and winning the supporters shield.  They are on pace to break the MLS record for goals against average.  They are currently in the middle of a 30 game home unbeaten streak and 24 games in league play, an MLS record.  They have already qualified for the knockout round of the CONCACAF Champions league (think world cup but only for teams in N. America).  Only the 3rd MLS team to ever do so.  They have achieved the 3rd and 4th longest streaks in MLS history for not letting opponents score, both this season.  And they are on pace to break the record of shutout games in one season.  And they have done all this with out any Designated players (big fancy players that expect lots of money).  If fact, RSL has one of the smallest markets in the league and thus have some of the lowest paid players.  But with their blue collar work ethic and strong depth, RSL have given us the greatest soccer season EVER!  And the best part?  It's not even over!  See you in Toronto at the MLS cup on November 21st Real Salt Lake!  To my boys for giving us something to cheer about again...Mahalo! 

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Struggles with Cyborality.

Well...I have no idea what to blog about right now.  Just feel some sort of cyboral obligation to do it.  I remember Mr. McConkie teaching me about creative writing and brainstorming and stuff.  He said just start writing and it will come.  I just made up the word cyboral.  Cyber Morals...Cyboral.  Give it a few years, then look it up on wikipedia.

Cyborality:  a sense of behavioral conduct that differentiates intentions, decisions, and actions between those that are good (or right) and bad (or wrong) within the cyber world.  Including, texting, twitting, social networking, online dating, instant messaging, emailing, cell phone talking, skyping, or any other fake or imaginary replication of true physical, face to face, human interaction.

I have now contributed to the English language.  Acceptable member of society, check. 

Surf has been flat to zero the last several weeks.  We did have a few good days and I was finally able to get out on my new board.  I went to good old breakwall and got all confident.  Then I went to Shark Pit and got smacked in the arse by the humility paddle.  Man I got worked.  Got hit in the calf by my skegs and I've been walking crooked ever since.  I did personally discover why they call Shark Pit "Shark Pit".  It was already a shady spot to surf without all the breaching sharks.  But alas, Breakwall was really going off the other day (shoulder to overhead) and I was able to go out on my new board again and got my mojo back.  Although I may not of looked it, I sure felt like I could have been in a surfing magazine that day.  I tore it up brah!  One of the bast surf days ever!  I say that at least once a week... Really though, I finally got the speed and size of wave to really see where I'm at.  Now that it's fall the north shore swells are coming in!  Bring it on!

There, blogged...check.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Season 1, Episode 15. The season finale.

Ok, so it is only one year late...but here is the final slideshow episode from my first year in Maui.  This is episode 15.  It is only the last few days from last November right after my dad and brother left and before I went back to Utah.  There's a few pics from my trip to Big Island, and the rest is just random from my last few days.  Again, most pictures will be boring to you, but as this is my digital journal, they're meaningful to me.  Aloha!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Scuba Duba Doo!

So I finally got to go diving.

Scuba diving has been something I have wanted to do my whole life and I've always felt a little weird that I haven't done it yet seeing as how I've done just about everything else humanly possible in the water and love it so much.  And just as I is now one of my most favorite things to do EVER!  These pictures are from my first ever dive at Mala wharf, an old Pier that collapsed in a hurricane in 1993.

Tera and Dread Jake.  Garrett in the back.

Reef shark!
The old pier.
Spotted Eagle Rays.
Underwater pole dancing?  Go Tera!
Dread Jake and a cool starfish.

Cool Tera has cool gloves.

 So I have actually been diving every day since!  No pictures though....frowny face.  Today at work though I got to dive with dolphins!  On our way back to Maui from Lanai we came across a pod of spinner and spotted dolphins and since we had a very small number of people today the captain let us jump in with them!  It was pretty sweet, unfortunately an open water dive with tourists means I didn't have a free hand to take my camera into the water with me, but the dolphins were really cool.  I did get some shots before we got in.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Scratch That

In keeping with my new tradition of blogging about surfing, like I originally planned when creating this blog, I have some surf news.  Tonight's report pretty much tromps last nights report.  Remember that epic wave I caught last night?  (see previous entry)  Well, add about 5-10 feet to that wave, then times it by 10.  LNW+10ft. x 10 = Greatest Breakwall surf session EVER!  Tonight had nothing to do with beautiful sunsets or pretty colors, tonight...was all about the waves.  The biggest waves I have ever seen here on Maui.  Every set had at least overhead waves with a few double overhead sets coming about every ten minutes.  This means these waves were 10-15 feet high!  Do you have any idea how it feels to get hit with a 15 foot wall of water?  I do, and it's pretty incredible.  Whats even more incredible than getting churned around like a rag doll in a washing machine is RIDING a 15 foot wave!  The only thing that has come close to making me that silly with happiness is a 60 degree spotless slope of shoulder deep powder.  I rode these perfect waves for three hours tonight.  I've never surfed that fast, I've never surfed wave faces that big or for that long, I've never made such fun turns,  I've never been worked that hard...until tonight.  And tonight, most definitely takes the prize for being my most epic surf session ever.  Now I must go drain a gallon of sea water out of my sinuses...

Das da good kine brah!

So contrary to what the naming of my blog implies, I haven't really reported on the surfing that much.  I shall now make amends for this travesty and blog giddily about how much I love to surf!  In fact, one of my most favorite things to do in this whole beautiful world is surf breakwall at sunset.  Breakwall is the name of the surf break a few blocks from my house, it is so creatively named on account of it's proximity to the harbor's breakwall.  I have written about surfing here at sunset before, but I am going to do it again because it is so amazing.  Tonight was no exception, well except one, that I'll get to in a bit.  The colors in the sky were still as beautiful as ever, the clouds above the Maui mountains were lit up in a way I've never seen before.  The mountains had gone dark the sun still lit up the bottoms of the clouds above the mountains, the effect was quite breathtaking.  The whitewash behind crashing waves leaves lots of tiny bubbles that when they pop send tiny sprays of water into the air, the low sun lights up these little droplets and the effect looks like a golden blanket covering the water.  Across the entire horizon the sky is a smorgasbord of pink, yellow, orange, blue, purple and black.  The palm trees light up like they are on stage when the sunlight hits them from such a low angle.  The Luau at Lele still provides Polynesian rhythm with it's drums and music.  It's still as beautiful every night as it ever was last year.  But tonight, the difference was this one wave...One wave that has filled me with endless giddiness.  A wave that I will recall every time things in life seem to be a little less than awesome, to lift me up and remind me how amazing life is.  Waves are measured by their height from the top of the wave to the bottom of the trough (looking at the wave from the beach)  Hawaiian style of measuring used to be from the back of the wave, but to stay politically correct we'll use the official measurement.  So saying a wave is overhead, means that it is at least 6 feet high in my case.  (it's over my head, scientific)  Normally I would put the average wave height at breakwall at about 2-4, this would be a good day anyway.  And tonight this was the case.  But in every swell there are always a few waves that break the day's mold.  These are hard to catch though because you have to be in the right spot, and if you've been catching small kine waves all day you will be in too far (too close to the beach) these larger waves break much further out.  But tonight, by the great graces that be, I found myself completely surprised by one of the most gorgeous waves I have ever seen at breakwall.  And I was in the perfect spot!  I caught the wave with only a few paddles, and shot down the face.  My first bottom turn back up the wave was so fast my face was only inches from wave face.  I got at least 10 bottom turns and just as many top turns, I was ripping off the top break getting the nose of my board all the way out of the wave and bombing back down into the trough at speeds I'd never felt on a board before.  And this wave kept going and going.  It was such a long ride!  At the end I was making another bottom turn with a huge giggly grin on my face when I noticed something I have never seen at break wall.  This wave was barreling!    Oh it was gorgeous, unfortunately I was not expecting this and since I was making my bottom turn I was not in position to get into the barrel.  I tried anyway though, well duh.  But alas, getting into a barrel after it's closed is all but impossible...water is heavy.  So I just got knocked silly off my board.  The ride was over, but my exclamation as soon as I came up said it all, "best wave EVER!!"  When I got back in the lineup several bruddahs actually told me how sweet of a ride that was, this my friends = Hawaiian respect.  I probably sound like a hippie to most of you, but Reed, Josh, Audrey, or any other surfer who might be reading this, you know exactly what I am talking about.  It was most definitely, Pono.  Everything is awesome my friends...

Thursday, August 12, 2010

F = MA

The Kaulana of Maui

So, although I am now famous Island wide as El Asesino de Plastico, yesterday I fought I battle that I lost miserably. It wasn't lack of strength, determination, or will that was my downfall, however, it was Newton's laws that did me in! On my boat the Kaulana of Maui (see above) we go to two snorkel spots everyday. The first is on the island of Lanai, the second is on Maui at a place called Mala. At Mala there is no bullet buoy on the mooring so I always have to jump off the boat and swim around to find it. Normally I sit on the bow and wait for the captain to get the boat as close as he can using the gps, he stops the boat, I jump in and he reverses until I signal that I have found the mooring. So yesterday I jumped off the bow of the boat after giving the captain the thumbs up and yelling "diver in!" so he knew I was going into the water. Everything normal. Now, keep in mind that The Kaulana is a 70 foot catamaran (it's not small). We had come to a complete stop making it safe for me to go, except the captain somehow seriously misunderstand my signals. Is soon as I hit the water he throttled up, I was already diving for the ocean floor and headed towards the starboard side where I knew the mooring to be. But alas, all those years of swim and polo practice were not enough (sorry for goofing off so much coach) as the two 1500 HP diesel engines quickly overtook me and WHAMO! The starboard keel nailed me in the back! A total blindside. I tumbled under the keel for a few seconds bouncing off the boat every few feet like a human bobber in a washing machine. About the same time I realized what in the world was happening, and after I had released my underwater cursing rant (I only curse under water, I promise) I realized what lies at the back of the boat, A large 3 foot diameter spinning prop of death! I probably wasn't nearly as close to the flesh eating blending machine as I thought, but that didn't matter! Human flesh + large metal prop = almost certain's science. I was scared, and of course you all know that I don't get scared of anything! So I paddled my guts out and kicked my chicken legs like never before to get clear of the boat and finally popped up about mid ship, right under the captains pilot helm. "Hey! What are you doing under the boat?!" The captain yelled at me... Ugh, that was an annoying question from the man that just ran me over. I've got some gnarly bruises (I don't bruise easily) and bumps but I'm fine now. Lesson learned though, never go in until I'm SURE the captain is done moving the boat around! And the laws of inertia are very heavily favored against me... I think I'll start going into the water from the side of the boat from now on too...

The worst part, got lousy tips that day.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

My life among the tourists...

Have you ever had a scattered brain? I have...

Gaining respect in Hawaii comes from how many tattoos you have, how successful you are at growing marijuana in a bucket in your backyard, and how you act in a lineup (surfing).
Getting respect in Utah comes from your job title and salary, where you went to college, for what degree and for how long, whether you served a mission, and your marital status (after age 25). I'm pretty low in both places, and I couldn't care less.
What's the deal with the "f" word? Seriously, just because I'm a dude that doesn't mean I want to here that word shoved between every syllable. I miss my friends that don't talk like that.
So I have a dream job in paradise...except for maintenance days. Along with trusty sidekick Tera (well, almost trusty, don't trust her with a wet vac), I pulled bilge tank duty the other day. A bilge tank is the lowest section of a vessel, it's filled with swash tanks, or tiny metal compartments filled with all sorts of crossbeams and other fun, sharp, metal objects. A bilge tank contains bilge water, for your convenience I looked up bilge on wikipedia, it says "Bilge water can be found aboard almost every vessel. Depending on the ship's design and function, bilge water may contain water, oil, urine, detergents, solvents, chemicals, pitch, particles, and so forth." So let that paint a picture for you, now in this painted masterpiece add about 110 degrees, poor circulation, and Dallon and Tera with a roll of paper towels, a wet vac, some degreaser, and a pressure washer. now stare at this painting for 6 hours! Oh but don't worry it didn't get boring at all! Tera managed to dump the wet vac onto her head, only to repeat this feet later. The second time though she was much wiser and instead of on her head she dumped it all out over the newly spit shined sections we had just cleaned! But I forgave her because getting the wet vac all wet gave me the shock of my life. Literally! I screamed like a little girl getting chased by a spider, falling into cold water, and seeing Zac Effron take his shirt off...all at once! But on the upside, I have a new funny tingling in my whole left arm. And at the end of the day, the Maui Princess has the cleanest bilge tank that NO ONE will ever see! Should have called Mike Rowe, good times, good times.
Working on a cocktail cruise:
  • I've been told I have the greatest mother in the world because I don't drink or smoke. I agree.
  • I'm been kissed while her husband took pictures.
  • I've been invited "back to our room".
  • I've made lots of new friends. None of which I will ever see again.
  • I've learned how to mix all sorts of drinks that I'll never taste.
  • I've fallen of the boat. I wasn't drinking.
  • I've discovered dance moves I never knew I had. Who rocked the boat?!
  • I've learned how vulnerable drunk people are.
  • I've increased my appreciation for the fact that I don't drink. Thanks Mom.
  • I've memorized all the lyrics to "September" by Earth, Wind and Fire. But who hasn't...
Cutting a two inch thick rope at 20 feet deep with a tiny pocket knife...not an easy task. But I've done it before. My bucket list just keeps getting shorter!
Watching shark week and working in the ocean everyday = awesome pranks on silly co-workers who are afraid of sharks! for example:

The other day there was a mass panic amongst the bobbing, snorkeling tourists when someone on the boat spotted something large in the water. Captain Dave ordered me to slay the man-eating beast and like a monkey on a banana tree I attacked with zeal! The water being my natural habitat I was able to catch the aquatic monster while whisking bikini clad touristas onto the boat with one hand and fend off the attacker with the other. The battle for strength, honor, and dominion of the sea was brief but fierce and alas, the hero, the knight, the warrior, the man...broke the surface a victor and claimed his oceanic throne! That slimy floating garbage bag didn't stand a chance! I ruled the day! At this very moment it sits in some landfill where it belongs, never to torment a hapless tourist again! Surprisingly though, everyone on the boat, after swimming for their lives, didn't find my flailing, kicking, and splashing about one bit humorous when they found out my opponent was just a trash bag. I however, had a great laugh...
My best friend and roommate Reed just left. This happened last year too. We come to Maui together, holding each others hand for comfort and support. Then he leaves me here all alone. Now I know how all his girlfriends feel... I had to move to a new house because the room we shared held too much memory and emotion for me to handle. So I live in a new place now, with a room all to myself...on the bright side, maybe I'll blog more.
Luckily, before Reed left we stowed away on a boat and went to Molokai. We found some 12 year old kid to be our tour guide (thanks Nathan) and explored the last Hawaiian island I hadn't been on. We tried to hike down to Kalaupapa, site of the Hansen's Disease (leprosy) colony. The colony is on a peninsula below the highest sea cliffs in the world. You would know them from Jurassic Park helicopter scenes. But bullocks...the colonists had recently revolted against the evil caretaker and in the battle somebody cut the elevator cable so there was no way down. I also heard something about a mudslide taking out a bridge, but whatever happened all I know is that we weren't able to make the hike. Bummer. I'll go back, sorry Reed. So instead we hiked to some other waterfalls and woke up a giant lizard. I also learned that my bare feet don't have as good traction as Reed's shoes. That hurt. But we slept on a beach, a three mile long beach (the longest in all of Hawaii) and had the whole thing to ourselves. Well, except for all the sand crabs that cozied up with us. It was pretty awesome. There are no people over there on that side of Molokai, just a ghost town and a dilapidated resort. So that morning when we still had the entire beach to ourselves, we did what any normal person would do, dropped our drawers and ran around and snorkeled the way man was meant to be! It was Reed's birthday after all, gotta wear the suit on your birthday! Beware of burning your buns if you choose to snorkel in the buff however...ouch! Molokai was cool.
We saw a shooting star that made us both think someone took a picture, it was just like a camera flash. Then a few nights later I saw one so close I could actually see it break into pieces and could see actual flames. Those were both awesome. Everything is awesome.
Once, it took me 15 minutes to find the mooring, I could touch the ocean floor before I could see it that day. THAT was a little disheartening, they never show the ocean like that on shark week.

Ahhhh, so much less scattered now. Mahalo!