French Fries and Windansea
Editor’s Note: Adam Warren is a purebred Californian. He grew up at and still maintains order with the big dogs at Windansea and all over La Jolla. He is a surfer, bodysurfer, waterman, drinker, connoisseur of culture and has an appreciation for local traditions — but also a keen sense for knowing when it’s time to learn new things. He is a guy you want to paddle out to a new spot with, travel to a foreign town alongside or enter a no-name saloon in the middle of nowhere right next to. He knows how to operate. In his column, he’s going to offer his experiences, knowledge and how you too might learn to navigate life with both self confidence and wonder at the same time. —Travis
In eighth grade I had a crush on Ashley Ferlitan. She was fully developed, looked 16 and was really forward. I was the second smallest kid in my grade. I had long hair and looked like a little girl. One Saturday I was leaving the beach in my wetsuit to go buy French fries for lunch and I saw Ashley. She was walking with some older high school guys and she stopped to say hi. The older guys started making fun of me because my wetsuit was too big for me and the excess neoprene begged for unflattering jokes about sexual organs, which these older guys happily pounced on — a devastating blow at this age. Everyone laughed, including Ashley, and I was wrecked.
I walked off with my head down and a pit in my stomach. I took the $2 I had that was meant to last me all day, and instead, turned that pit in my stomach into eggs, found those fuckers who made fun of me while they ate burritos up the street and unleashed them. I was trying to throw the eggs so hard they were breaking in my hands. The guys chased me in my overgrown wetsuit all the way back down to the beach. By the time we reached the parking lot, I was sure that I would have sand in every orifice and black eyes by the end of it. But some older local guys saw me running scared and stepped in. They made sure nothing was going to happen. I felt like a made man. The locals backed me up. It was a moment that would prequel a lifetime committed to Windansea, where I’ve seen this incident repeat itself time and time again. And now I’m happy to pay it forward to the generations behind us, because that is how it is supposed to be, especially for the little skinny kids who need it. —Adam Warren