Yesterday morning at 7:30 am I paddled out with 40 or 50 other surfers dressed in costume for the Fourth Annual Doo Dah Surf at my old break Sunset. Sunset is a modest point break on the northern end of Will Rogers State Beach in Pacific Palisades, California where Sunset Boulevard meets the Pacific Coast Highway at the Gladstone's parking lot.
I started surfing Sunset about nine years ago when I was just a kook. What a nice, easy going spot it's been over the years. Sunset is where I first heard about the planes hitting the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. I haven't been surfing there nearly as much as I used to since I moved to Santa Monica. It's hard to get in the van when I have a beach break just a few blocks walk away.
A few weeks ago I got an email from an old neighbor announcing the Doo Dah which I had never heard of before. On Friday night a friend of a friend reminded me about the event and I was stoked to be able to make the paddle out. I put on a white shirt, a bow tie, a cumberbund, and my old tux jacket after parking near Dos Baños on PCH. I met a guy named Dave from Chino who had seen a Doo Dah promo video on YouTube. He was unable to help me with my bow tie but luckily a surf sister down the way was able to assist me.
The event keeps getting bigger and bigger every year and it has picked up some sponsors along the way. There's a beach clean up thanks to the Surfrider Foundation, a 9:Fish surfboard giveaway, a best costume contest, some Jack Daniels chili from Kurt Bormann, and a general aloha spirit I found to a rare and beautiful thing for the old break. I shot some super 8 and 35mm film that I'll get back by the end of the week.
I also had the Canon G5 point and shoot in a water housing. I managed a few shots out in the lineup but I wasn't able to get some Doo Dah'ers up on waves. I'm hoping someone got me on film or digital while I caught three nice waist high right hand peelers in the 45 minutes I was out there. I had to come in kind of early since it was exhausting to paddle around with forty or fifty extra pounds that the wet tux put on me.
What a great time. I hope to do it again for years to come.