DFL Sk8 Graphic

by Spencer on January 17, 2010

Recently I was inspired to design this graphic and thought it might make a cool t-shirt.

Drug Free Lifestyle Sk8 Graphic

Drug Free Lifestyle Sk8 Graphic

Thanks, Spencer

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We are now home, but I wanted to document our last couple days in Portugal and summarize the 2009 World Surf Kayak Championships with one last post.

The view of the surf from our room.  We took one last surf session outside the hotel at Praia Azul the day before we left.

A reflection of the view of the surf from our room. We took one last surf session outside the hotel at Praia Azul the day before we left and it was an excellent time.

First, we’re selling some apparel to cover the costs of our trip.  These are assorted colors, so you have to choose the size, then color will be a surprise.  Hey, they’re a bargain, so stop yelling at us.

Drug Free Lifestyle Sweatshirts (click for larger image) - Assorted colors and come hooded, zip-hooded, and hoodless.  You may only choose size.

$25.00 - DFL "Flow" Sweatshirts - Assorted colors, hooded, zip-hooded, and hoodless. You may only choose size.

These are only currently available in large sizes.  They tend to run 1 size too small, so XL should fit a LG person.

$25.00

Sizes – run 1 size too small

Drug Free Lifestyle T-Shirts (assorted colors)

$15.00 - DFL "Flow" T-Shirts - Assorted colors

$15.00

Size

Rapid Transit Snail Sweatshirts (click for larger image) - Assorted colors and come hooded, zip-hooded, and hoodless.  You may only choose size.

$25.00 Rapid Transit Snail Sweatshirts - Assorted colors, hooded, zip-hooded, and hoodless. You may only choose size.

$25.00

Size

Our team, US East, officially placed 8th.  Trophies were awarded under a moonlit sky.  Most everyone ended up in the pool after or during the awards.

US East Team Captain, Anthony Bell, shows off our 8th place trophy.  Anthony was also our highest placing man in the Senior division.  He took 9th in Long Boat (ic)

US East Team Captain, Anthony Bell, shows off our 8th place trophy. Anthony was also our highest placing man in the Senior division. He took 9th in Long Boat (ic)

Team England taking their 1st Place Trophy for Team World Champions 2009

Well deserved and earned, Team England took the 1st Place Trophy for Team World Championship 2009.

Three of my teammates walked away as World Medalist.  Two thirds and a fourth.

US East 2009 World Medalists: Russ Buskirk, Lindsay Usher & Tom May

US East 2009 World Medalists: Russ Buskirk, Lindsay Usher & Tom May

After it was all over we were hungry.

A Santa Cruz restaurant, Au Coq, served a serious chicken dinner.  The four of us devoured two birds in short order.

A Santa Cruz restaurant, Au Coq, served a serious chicken dinner. The four of us devoured two birds in very short order.

As luck would have it, Joey found Attack From Mars, one of his and my favorite pinball machines (also Mars Attacks is pretty awesome which is the one with the video screen if you ever get to play it.  Both are awesome games), the night before we left and we spent an hour and several coins enjoying it.

As luck would have it, Joey discovered Attack From Mars, one of his and my favorite pinball machines (also Mars Attacks, different machine, is pretty awesome which is the one with the video screen if you ever get to play it. Both are awesome games), the night before we left and we spent an hour and several coins enjoying it.

On our final day we decided to sightsee a bit.  I saw this site and took a picture of it too.  This windmill was just outside a tower on one of the Castle Walls of Obidos.  This castle, which is very old (enjoy my history lesson here) still stands fully intact and functions as a town, full with restaurants and shops and lodging.  It’s a tourist attraction, we were toursist, and we were attracted to it.  Job well done.

View of an old windmill from the Obidos Castle Walls

View of an old windmill from the Obidos Castle Walls

Closer view of an old windmill from the Obidos Castle Walls

Closer view of an old windmill from the Obidos Castle Walls. It's pretty cool to see how well these people harnessed natural energy long ago and are still doing it today.

Flowers at Obidos

Flowers at Obidos

Hey man!  Heeeeey!  I might suggest that it's not a good idea to sunbathe with that complexion.  The sun in Portugal is much harsher than your computer monitor back in London!

Unsuspecting European at Obidos. Hey man! Heeeeey! Don't mind me, I'm just walking on the castle wall up above your poolside slumber at your holiday bungalow! There are also hundreds of other toursists with cameras up here if you think you might want to put your pants back on! No big deal! I might suggest that it's not a good idea to sunbathe with that fair complexion of yours! The sunlight in Portugal is much harsher than that of your computer monitor back in London! While we're talking, where can I buy "man" brand underwear?!

The Agua was locked up everywhere we went.  I assume these were public waterworks, like fire hydrants or something.  Regardless, I thought they were cool looking.  Actually the drinking water was good straight from the tap.

The Agua was locked up everywhere we went. I assume these were public waterworks, like fire hydrants or something. Regardless, I thought they were cool looking. Actually the drinking water at our hotel was good straight from the tap.

No aqua for you, it's locked.

No agua for you, it's locked.

You can laugh at this if you want.  It’s not a complaint, just a record of what happened.  We (Joey, myself and other team members) got some kind of cold or flu before we left Portugal and were blessed with clogged sinuses, runny noses and throbbing headaches the whole way home.  Lovely I know.  The flight was long, around 9 hours and we sat beside some awful couple who kept bickering at one another as well as the flight attendants the entire flight.  Nothing they were served was good enough, the seat wasn’t comfortable enough, they wanted our seats (which we took great pleasure in saying “NOPE, we chose aisle seats for a reason”), and the list goes on.  There’s more to this experience but the part you need to know is that basically it was miserable.  Luckily we can look back on these type of experiences and laugh.  I guess that is if you survive.  The funny thing is that if one were to dig up any old trip reports which my friends and I may have written about these kayaking trips over the past 8-10 years you would find many similar stories.  Thumb through the blog archives of Effort.tv and you may find such stories.

Joey Snoozin on the planeride home.  We caught some Zs off and on during the 9 hour flight home.

Joey very comfortably snoozin on the plane ride home. We caught some Zs off and on during the 9 hour flight.

I’d like to give a final thanks to everyone at home who helped us get to Portugal, to the Portuguese and WSKA for a great event, and to all our friends and competitors who visited this site and read about our experiences.  We hope to see you all again at another beach or the next World Championships in 2011… wherever that may be.  Maybe OBX, Australia or an undisclosed “world class break,” tba…

*Special Thanks mentioned at bottom.
Sincerely,
Spencer Cooke
US East Surf Kayak Team 2009

Joey on left and me on right.  We were practicing what it would be like when we got lockjaw from the disease we caught in Portugal.

(Joey on left and me on right) We were practicing what it would be like when we got lockjaw from the disease we caught in Portugal. Can't ever take too much precaution. Always thinking ahead, us guys.

Special Thanks go to:
Families:
Cooke, Robins, Hall, Lavell, Sherburne, Acuff, Jenkins, Auer, Houck, Davis, Foley, Cooper, Kee
Individuals:
Shari Robins, Mason Cooke, Maria Young, Raymond Cotton, Drew & Eileen Hayes, Margaret Matthews, Jacques Lewin, Chris McMillan, Michael Pesant, Clark Cross, Paul Moreno, Andy Gates, John & Kara Weld, Roger Loughney, Craig Langford, Jonathan Nameth, Adam Motes, Jeff Rivest and Simon Martin.  (Sorry if anyone has been forgotten.)
Businesses:
Mike Byer Auto & Truck Repair, Nantahala Outdoor Center, Asheville Pizza Company, Dwellings, Drinkin’ Beanz Coffee House, Highland Door Company, Dirt Girl Design, Tomato Jam Cafe, Trout Lily Market, Troyers, The Fairview Town Crier and more.
Kayaking Sponsors:
Immersion Research, Shred Ready, Astral Buoyancy

Visit http://ESKAsurf.com for more detailed info about our team and organization.

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Hello to everyone back home.  This may be the final correspondence before we return.  The 2009 Surf Kayak World Championship Finals wrapped up yesterday and today with some very notable performances.  Conditions this morning were not extremely favorable but ended up providing ample waves to choose the World’s Champions.  Swell size dropped in half from yesterday to today giving waist to chest high waves.

I saw at least 20 hours of the competition like this.  My eyes are tired.

I saw at least 20 hours of the competition like this. My eyes are tired.

My teammates from the US East, Lindsay Usher, Russ Buskirk and Tom May gave noble competition efforts resulting in two 3rd places and one 4th.  Each of them definitely have what it takes as surfers to get the gold but all the puzzle pieces didn’t quite fall into place today.  I’m very proud of these guys for persevering to the finals and I think they all have feelings of achievement.  If not, hopefully they will find the passion and drive to give it another shot at a future World Championship.  This type of motivation can sometimes be difficult to conjure up in oneself, but I feel it needs to be one your own terms.

Sand, lots of sand.

It is crammed into, caked onto and stuck inside of everything we own.

It is crammed into, caked onto and stuck inside of everything we own.


More Notes, some strange:

Sugar comes from elephants in Portugal.  Little known fact.

Sugar comes from elephants in Portugal. Little known fact.


Nathan Eades, Welsh, shredded his way to the short boat finals today.  Nathan happily came out of the water with a 3rd place.  Yesterday the guy was simply ecstatic to make it to the semi-finals, so I think he hit and exceeded a competition goal with a bronze medal.  I’m psyched for both of these guys.  Pretty cool for a couple to both do so well in a world level event.

Nathan Eades with his 7'7" HP boat made by Airtime, the new surf kayak division of Downtime, a UK based composite manufacturer.

Nathan Eades with his 7'7" HP boat made by Airtime, the new surf kayak division of Downtime, a UK based composite manufacturer.

David Speller made his debut into the Men's class this year after his past two (three?) World Championship titles as a Junior.  Here he is seen throwing a gigantic lip move in the long boat class.

David Speller from Team Jersey made his debut into the Men's class this year after his past two (three?) World Championship titles as a Junior. Here he is seen throwing a gigantic lip move in the long boat class.

Nathan Eades and David Speller congratulate one antoher after the finals.

Nathan Eades and David Speller congratulate one antoher after the finals.

Urko Otoxa from the Basque Team (Spain) won his first World Title today in the Men's Long Boat class.  I competed against Urko in my first heat of the worlds last week and he very nicely eliminated me from the contest.  Very nice guy, Urko (pronounced oord-ko) and I'm glad to have been slain by him.

Urko Otoxa from the Basque Team (Spain) won his first World Title today in the Men's Long Boat class. I competed against Urko in my first heat of the worlds last week and he very nicely eliminated me from the contest. Very nice guy, Urko (pronounced Oord-ko) and I'm glad to have been slain by him.

England's Gary Adcock, a Master (40 and over) paddler pulled by far the largest aerial of the entire contest in his long boat and landed it perfectly.  I have this on video and it is outstanding.  There is also a really sick photo of it on kayaksurf.net

England's Gary Adcock, a Master (40 and over), performed by far the largest aerial of the entire contest in his long boat and landed it perfectly. I have this on video and it is outstanding. There is also a really sick photo of it on kayaksurf.net Gary is a man of large stature. He carries his kayak under his arm like a surfboard and it doesn't look at all awkard. Big boy, big air.

Edu Etxeberria of the Basque Team (Spain) performed some of the most memorable maneuvers of the entire event.  He was certainly a favorite for many, but walked away with the 2nd Place in Mens Short Boat.

Edu Etxeberria of the Basque Team (Spain) performed some of the most memorable maneuvers of the entire event. He was certainly a favorite for many to win this event, but walked away with the 2nd Place in Mens Short Boat. Notably, the entire Basque Team are rippers. These guys looked like they trained and trained well for this contest. They should be proud.

An unknown lady slashes the lip in the Women's Long Boat Semi-Finals.

An unknown (to me) lady slashes the lip in the Women's Long Boat Semi-Finals.

Rui Caldon of the Portuguese team and Watertech Kayaks.

Rui Caldon of the Portuguese team and Watertech Kayaks shows one of his shiny new boats.

Pete Blenkinsop of the English Team (now the World Champions) drives the line in his old trusty blue trident.

Pete Blenkinsop of the England, the World Champion Team this year, drives the line in his old trusty blue trident.

At the North Contest Location the Skimboard World Championship went down.

At the North Contest Location the Skimboard World Championship went down.

And a final note to my wife and son waiting at home for me.

Dangerous.

Dangerous.

Still dangerous, but if we're gonna do it let's do it together.  A true test of our love.

Still dangerous, but if we're gonna do it let's do it together. A true test of our love.

See ESKAsurf.com for today’s World Final results for the US East Team.
Visit KayakSurf.net‘s News for tons of amazing photos and full World Surf Kayak Championship Results.

Later,
spe_photo21
Spencer Cooke
US East Surf Kayak Team 2009

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Report #8 – World Surf Kayak Championships, Portugal

July 30, 2009

Hello friends.  Final results for our team is 8th place.  Not our wish but that’s what we earned this time.  None of us seem too heartbroken over this and there is a general air of accomplishment among the team regarding our performance.  Just happy to be here representing our country, home towns and families. In […]

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Report #5, 6 & almost 7 – World Surf Kayak Championships, Portugal

July 29, 2009

This update is covering the past three days.  Really it only covers the 27th, 28th and half of today, the 29th.  Things got really busy and I’ve been too tired. The announcer at this World Championship event has been the highlight of each of our days on the beach.  He is a local surfer with […]

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Report #4 – World Surf Kayak Championships, Portugal

July 26, 2009

Today we headed back down to the beach for more individual preliminary heats.  Low tide has been hitting in the late AM making for some interesting conditions.  Today the swell was as small as we have seen it, around waist high consistently with head high sets.  It was also pretty windy by the time most […]

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Report #3 – World Surf Kayak Championships, Portugal

July 25, 2009

Okay, settle down now, she isn’t real.  I should have known better.  I’d like to think that she was carved from a single pillar of stone a hundred years ago by the first surfers.  Perhaps they used their surfboards to paddle out and catch fish with hand-lines outside the surf break.  Later they would bring […]

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Report #2 – World Surf Kayak Championships, Portugal

July 23, 2009

The Portuguese coast is rocky and dry, and the water, a cool blue.  Air temp has been cool at night, sweatshirt weather.  Days have been warm with cool water temperatures, I’d say around 60˚.  As long as you are moving or in the sun you keep pretty warm while surfing. We woke up this morning […]

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Thanks for getting us here.

July 22, 2009

To all our friends, family and neighbors, THANK YOU for helping get us to Portugal.  Joey and I arrived safely yesterday morning in Libson and made it to the surf for a short session before evening and are now enjoying our second day here.  Opening ceremonies for the World Championship event is Thursday evening.  Competition […]

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Why I’m “Drug Free” – Joey Hall

July 17, 2009

Will you remember my reply when your high horse dies? – The Shins I don’t know how to break the news, but It’s pretty clear you’ll be asked to choose, between what you lack and what you excuse – Aimee Mann I am 31 years old. I have never tasted a drop of alcohol, never […]

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