Above photo taken by Steve Domjan at the Bowl. Thank you Steve, you could have been sailing you

  • Above photo taken by Steve Domjan at the Bowl. Thank you Steve, you could have been sailing yourself instead of taking photos of me.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

what is Windsurfing?

Windsurfing: Pronounced, windsurfing. Also referred to as shredding, Sailing, Boardsailing, or “I don’t care what cha’ call it: you can’t do it here.”

What separates this type of surfing from all others, is the use of a universal joint to merge the sails power with that of the surfboard. This allows windsurfers to travel great distances in order to catch waves, or be rescued.

It is unclear who invented this asinine sport. Only one thing is clear; whoever it was…had way too much time on their hands. The activity gained its greatest popularity in the 70’s. Two out of work engineers; Hoyle Schweitzer, and Jim Drake, patented a universal joint designed specifically to hit you in the nuts when it disengaged from the surfboard. The 70’s were undoubtedly the halcyon days of the sport. While there is proof that people have windsurfed for 1,000 of years; the sport reached its pinnacle during the “head dip” performed in the opening credits of Miami Vice.
This “epic” moment was the last time Windsurfing was considered cool.

Modern Windsurfing is usually practiced by middle aged men who drive large vehicles, but never actually leave them. Archeologists believe this is because they have spent all their money on gear, and actually live in their trucks. The windsurfers themselves claim to be waiting for the wind to fill in?

It is the author’s opinion that Modern Windsurfers spend most of their time waiting for the second coming of Robby Naish, deciding what gear to rig, and complaining about how much access they have lost to kitesurfing.


PeconicPuffin said...

Frank, me droog, Drake readily admits that he and Schweitzer were proceeded by (and new about) Newman Darby, who is recognized by the Smithsonian as having invented the universal joint (though he didn't get a good patent on it.) Drake did a great interview in American Windsurfer in which he readily acknowledges all of this.

Schweitzer and Drake successfully created a commercial product and launched the sport (thank you gentlemen!!!)

Joe said...

Spooky, how did you know that I'm a gear head?

drysuit2 said...

Ah, Michael; I knew someone would bring up Darby. I’m glad it was you. You always give me great ideas. I did mention Darby, in an earlier version; but edited him out for space. I am home today, and still not able to sail yet … so I’ll see if I can elaborate.

Thanks again for re-kindling my love of windsurfing.

PeconicPuffin said...

Frank, I'm always happy to stoke stoke (and need I remind you about the first jibe I ever saw...yours!)

Anyhow re Newman Darby, I feel bad for him. He was a failure at getting patents, a failure at marketing his invention, and still has to fight/be fought for to get his place in windsurfing history while so many people want to give all the credit to Drake/Schweitzer (who launched the sport brilliantly.) I always appreciate Drake stating in no uncertain terms that Darby was first. Classy.