Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Andy Irons, Master Of Whine

Ok, I'm a bit late on this one, but it needs calling out...

Andy Irons did his first "real" interview a few months ago. It basically consisted of the former 3x World Champ basically blowing his fuse for 20 minutes.

You can read it here.

During his rant, which didn't really touch on any of the specifics of his competitive fall from glory, he complained rather passionately about the surf media and all the lies and slander they've printed about him over the past couple of years, not to mention all the shit us "internet bloggers" were talking about him.

At the prompting of the interviewer, he actually compared his life-under-a-lens to that of Kobe Bryant and other professional athletes.

If this were a movie, that would have been the point where I sprayed Starbucks out of my mouth.

Quick note to Andy: The backup catcher for the Toronto Blue Jays gets ten times the media scrutiny that you do.

Professional surfers are the most non-criticized athletes on the fucking planet. Period. Which is bad enough...because listening to and reading the surf media, which is just the PR arm of the surf industry, is boring and repetitive. But having to listen to professional surfers actually complain that they're the targets of critical, mean spirited journalists, is...fuck...I don't even have a word for it.

It's idiotic.

It's inane.

It's so fucking delusional and pathetic it makes me want to tie them up with leashes, stuff them in boardbags and bury them in the desert (sorry, Gator, didn't mean to steal your idea).

Andy, do you have any clue what happens to real professional athletes who have spectacular competitive flameouts amidst endless rumors of alcohol and drug abuse?

First off, the don't stay rumors for very long. They become FACTS. Legions of reporters and journalists start sifting through your trash and calling your cousins on the phone in Kauai and showing up at your father's job and interviewing your 3rd grade teachers. Every time you leave a strip joint or a bar or a westside plate lunch stand, a half dozen photos get snapped. You wind up on the cover of Sports Illustrated with headlines like "Wipeout!". You have 7 page exposes written about you in the LA Times and Vanity Fair with photos of you in mid-yawn, looking bloated and hungover, and that nasty white clag in the corner of your mouth.

The only professional surfer in history who has gotten even a taste of true sports celebrity is Kelly Slater, and even Slater, the NINE TIME WORLD CHAMPION, is still more well known outside of surfing as the guy who had a bit part in Baywatch and once dated Pam Anderson. He's not even C-list. At red carpet events they tell Kelly to get out of the way so they can get a shot of Andy Dick.

Know this, Andy Irons: the entire surfing industry is on your side. You're good for the sport and you're good for sales. When I met with the head of marketing for Hurley while back, he couldn't stop talking about how many pairs of "rising sun" boardshorts you had sold for Billabong. They are the best selling boardshorts EVER.

So quit your fucking whining. When you've got Evan Slater drilling you about hookers and blow and your wife is telling Chris Mauro about what a distant limpdick you've become and how she's going to dump you for Derek Jeter, you may complain.

Until then, you are a professional surfer who gets paid very well to travel around the world and ride waves. You are part of a billion dollar industry, with virtually no independent media outlets, that provides you with more privacy and less criticism than in any sport in America.

Have a Bintang and a smile and shut the fuck up.

The Colonel says, "At ease."