Politics of Alpha Males and Dropping In

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filthbarrel
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Politics of Alpha Males and Dropping In

Post by filthbarrel » Sun Jul 03, 2005 10:37 am

Surfer A is sitting waiting. Another bloke (Surfer B) - fitter, younger -paddles out past A and sits in prime position where take off is vertical. Younger bloke takes off on the best set wave. Other bloke decides not to drop in. This happens twice and then on third time A decides it will happen all day if he lets it, so he drops in on B

Of course B is outraged and screams and shouts. B does not understand that A cannot take off in the spot B is taking off but he still wants to ride some waves and will get none if B just keeps doing what he is doing.

Is A justified in any way or must he succumb to the unwritten law of the jungle? Does he have a right to challenge the validity of that law which seems to favour strength and physical superiority over a sharing philiosophy?

I am thinking that surfer B can get stuffed.
Last edited by filthbarrel on Sun Jul 03, 2005 1:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Johnno
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Post by Johnno » Sun Jul 03, 2005 10:44 am

Matter of location, in a lay back spot sharing would be the go, but in a high profile spot if you can't get deeper........... well you are going to watch a lot from the shoulder.

robh
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Post by robh » Sun Jul 03, 2005 10:44 am

Of course A is outraged and screams and shouts. A does not understand that B cannot take off in the spot B is taking off but he still wants to ride some waves and will get none if B just keeps doing what he is doing.
I think you got the letters bck to front..or maybe im just not thinking

pooshkie
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Post by pooshkie » Sun Jul 03, 2005 12:02 pm

what is surfer A doing out there if he is just going to sit on the shoulder all day.... he should be surfing somewhere he can handle. since i surf winki a bit i will try to use it as an example.

winki is steap takeoff into a barrel on the first section right next to the ledge. if you are taking off on the shoulder it isnt even barreling and you are just getting in the way of about 15 other people who are taking off on the right spot. (on an uncrowded day)
therefor dont you think that the person should just move to bower if thay cant take the drop?? then they would be getting a much longer wave that they can handle instead of a 15 meter ride.

then again if there is only surfer A and surfer B out i think it may be different. if i were surfer B i would be trying to talk him into taking off a bit deeper... that way at least he is in the proper spot and even if he doesnt catch a wave, at least they have experienced where your meant to take off and had a good perspective so they can come back next time and have a dig instead of sitting on the shoulder.

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chris_010
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Post by chris_010 » Sun Jul 03, 2005 12:36 pm

Surfer A should just catch the wave after the best set wave of the day?

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bc
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Post by bc » Sun Jul 03, 2005 1:19 pm

In Indo, at waves like Shipwrecks, and Bingin, some surfers will pay locals to get them into waves. The local will sit deepest, paddling for the wave, meaning he has priority over the other surfers, the paying kook on the shoulder is then called onto the wave, and the local pulls off.
If you try to drop in, more than likely you'll be thumped, or have NO chance of getting another wave.

The other problem in this circumstance, is when the alpha males keep sitting deeper and deeper, until most waves are wasted because they cant make the takeoff - Any thoughts on rights then? I feel if i dog a couple of takeoffs in a row, then i dont mind being dropped in on -if the surfer is competent, and will flick off rather than spear me with his board if I actually make it.

Laurie McGinness
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Post by Laurie McGinness » Sun Jul 03, 2005 3:56 pm

I wrote a short, funny (well I thought it was!) article in SW about fifteen years comparing behaviour in the surf to hierarchical behaviour in other male primate groups. I still think it is true. Put a bunch of blokes together in a competitive situation and you usually end up with a hierarchy, but one of the things that isn't always appreciated is that lower status individuals often do quite well for themselves by having a low profile and being shrewd.

Being the alpha male is also a health hazard since you're expected to repel predators (or take the heaviest waves) plus deal with all the up and comers who want the spot. It's all very stressful so it's not a great long term strategy.

The Bingin stunt sounds like a variation on the double team drop in that was popular at a few spots in the eighties. If you got inside the locals, two of them would drop in, the first to straighten you out and the second to have the wave.

The surfer A, surfer B scenario isn't realistic because this kind of behaviour doesn't really kick in until there is a group. Two surfers (or two gorillas) will not usually have to compete, there will be enough bananas (or waves) for both.

And I'll confess here, I teach biology!

filthbarrel
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Post by filthbarrel » Sun Jul 03, 2005 5:38 pm

Laurie, you are saying the scenario aint realistic -surfers c-z are out there too -just because they are not mentioned does not mean they are not there. Invisibility doesa not mean total omission

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marcus
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Post by marcus » Sun Jul 03, 2005 7:40 pm

bc wrote:In Indo, at waves like Shipwrecks, and Bingin, some surfers will pay locals to get them into waves. The local will sit deepest, paddling for the wave, meaning he has priority over the other surfers, the paying kook on the shoulder is then called onto the wave, and the local pulls off.
If you try to drop in, more than likely you'll be thumped, or have NO chance of getting another wave.
thats a pretty low act, the kooks that pay the locals should be blacklisted of some sort.
do they get the evil eye from the other surfers?
Oscar Wilde - "I am not young enough to know everything"

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bc
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Post by bc » Sun Jul 03, 2005 8:05 pm

as a generalisation, it tends to be the japanese surfers that do this.

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loco4olas
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Re: Politics of Alpha Males and Dropping In

Post by loco4olas » Sun Jul 03, 2005 8:53 pm

filthbarrel wrote:Surfer A is sitting waiting. Another bloke (Surfer B) - fitter, younger -paddles out past A and sits in prime position where take off is vertical. Younger bloke takes off on the best set wave. Other bloke decides not to drop in. This happens twice and then on third time A decides it will happen all day if he lets it, so he drops in on B

Of course B is outraged and screams and shouts. B does not understand that A cannot take off in the spot B is taking off but he still wants to ride some waves and will get none if B just keeps doing what he is doing.

Is A justified in any way or must he succumb to the unwritten law of the jungle? Does he have a right to challenge the validity of that law which seems to favour strength and physical superiority over a sharing philiosophy?

I am thinking that surfer B can get stuffed.
Pretty much with you there.

But there's heaps of variables-number of surfers in the water-wave frequency-skill level of surfers-the relationship between the two (are they father and son? ;-) ), is the young bloke a booger? On a mal?

Subject to A being a competent surfer-if A is a learner for instance, well my tribal training tells me, time to pay the dues.

Sounds like B is doing a little over-reacting. Maybe needs an empathy slap from the old bull.

Matt

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marty
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Post by marty » Sun Jul 03, 2005 9:40 pm

Seems when its heavy and suckky you get a few morons who paddle deep and get dusted on the takeoff. everytime.
Maybe a alpha-male immitator...
Such a shame when it happens repeatedly, the best waves going unridden by an idiot getting pitched on the takeoff...

guess karma will sort it out.
Just on Karma. The Early on Sat morn. after being in the water for quite sometime, i was caught in a bad position paddling back out. Got a few on the head and was struggling. Solid on comes through, stick swings around to stroke in real late. He decides no go, and bails over the top. Anyway I'm bout 5 metres back and just scrape under the lip. Flipper is ripped clean off and never to be seen again. Karma i guess, for me being in a shitty pos, stuffing it up for the certain stick (he wasn't going neway).

There's a lil proof that karma will sort everything out. Alpha-males and shoulder hoppers included.

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loco4olas
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Post by loco4olas » Mon Jul 04, 2005 6:07 am

merkin wrote:Does bring to mind the old story Matt...

Young Bull - "Hurry up, quick, let's go down the paddock and screw some of them cows"

Old Bull - "Slow down, take your time son; let's go down the paddock and screw ALL of those cows"
Exactly what I was eluding to.

Matt

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Post by Nick Carroll » Mon Jul 04, 2005 9:48 am

There's usually more than one wave in a set. :wink: Surfer A should probably know that by now.

And if Alpha Male Hell Boy B paddles too deep for himself under pressure, guess what, he's not Alpha any more, he's Beaten.

Sometimes upon entering the surf, cruelly, instead of simply paddling around B and taking the inside, I have been known to waste five minutes nudging him too deep for himself, until the inevitable occurs. Perhaps A should try this before dropping in. A achieves his desired result, without forfeiting the Moral High Ground.

If B is so good he has no deep-slot limit (ie Andy Irons, Kelly Slater) then perhaps A should just sit back and applaud.

xxnc

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