Baby Take it Off!: Shawn Dollar vs. Garrett McNamara

posted by / Blogs / February 8, 2013

 

Baby Take It Off!

Shawn Dollar is one of the most fearless big wave riders of our time. He is a perennial Maverick’s standout, riding the biggest wave ever there in 2010 and making it to the finals of this year’s event. He paddled into a monster at Cortes Bank. A real monster that is nominated for XXL awards in the Monster Paddle and Ride of the Year categories. He is a man. A man with a fine name. Yet with all his amazing accomplishments, and his fine name, he has a job. A 9 to 5 like you. He works as a rep for Reef and oh the injustice! Oh the painful, painful injustice. You deserve to work. You don’t drop into fiery bombs.

I called Shawn Dollar to hear the pain in his voice and to soothe him.

C: Why do you have a job?
SD: Hahahaha. You know, big wave surfing doesn’t have the exposure yet that the World Tour guys have. The web impressions and magazine stories just aren’t quite there.

C: Do you hate the pansies that surf Trestles?
SD: No, no, no. It can be a little frustrating but the guys who are charging now are like pioneers and hopefully, in ten years, kids will be making money riding big waves. Hopefully we are the inspiration for the future.

C: You surf giants so that your kids will make money?
​SD: No! I hope my kids don’t surf big waves.

His voice has no pain. It has joy and happiness and the rare contentment of a man living on the very edge. But, still, he should not have to have a job. He should spend his non-surfing hours talking to Anderson Cooper about his vast accomplishments. For reasons unknown, Garrett McNamara has this distinction. God save big wave surfing from that strange man. God grant it to Shawn Dollar.

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  • rogermeras

    i like the point of this article, but it is very hard to read

  • ryan

    a rep for a surf company is hardly a tough 9-5 job

  • Jimmy Provalone

    The job that should be in question is not Shawn Dollars, but rather, the journalist, Chas Smith’s. This is one of the worst articles I’ve ever read from any publication, let alone a surf magazine. The comparison between Dollar and McNamara, which is the title of the article after all, is a mere afterthought tagged on to the end of a boring and too-brief interview.

    This whole thing was published to convey to the reader, who surfs crappy beachbreaks every day and is lucky to even have a job right now, to feel bad for this surfer because he has to have a job and can’t make his living surfing waves? Give me a break. Boo hoo. I feel so bad for him. He has to work at Reef, a major surf corporation, instead of surfing all day.

    Any high school newspaper journalist could write something of higher quality than this garbage.

    And by the way, as someone who is currently looking for a job, I would gladly drop into a big wave at Mavericks if it meant I would be able to get a job at Reef, or any other surf company for that matter.

  • Jimmy Provalone

    The job that should be in question is not Shawn Dollars, but rather, the journalist, Chas Smith’s. This is one of the worst articles I’ve ever read from any publication, let alone a surf magazine. The comparison between Dollar and McNamara, which is the title of the article after all, is a mere afterthought tagged on to the end of a boring and too-brief interview.

    This whole thing was published to convey to the reader, who surfs crappy beachbreaks every day and is lucky to even have a job right now, to feel bad for this surfer because he has to have a job and can’t make his living surfing waves? Give me a break. Boo hoo. I feel so bad for him. He has to work at Reef, a major surf corporation, instead of surfing all day.

    Any high school newspaper journalist could write something of higher quality than this garbage.

    And by the way, as someone who is currently looking for a job, I would gladly drop into a big wave at Mavericks if it meant I would be able to get a job at Reef, or any other surf company for that matter.

  • Karl

    Finally somebody talking about tho BS. Gime a break….
    BIggest Wave ever, doesn’t even break.
    HAHAHA, Garrett trying HARD again, im’ sure the Billabong XXL clows will buy that crap.
    Lies,myths,marketing,$$…. Big Wave Surfing is bigger than all of that shit…
    So don’t let those clowns represent the sport.
    So many humble chargers around,really doing it…..
    Fuck Garrett with that bullshit , that fuckin wave never even broke ,there were bigger waves ridden that day, like Keali Mamala, carving,fading and really surfing a proper big wave.
    KEEP IT REAL.

  • Zack Parker

    Well written Chas. They both surf way bigger waves than I do. Good for them… Better for Shawn.

  • Jim

    Well said Karl!
    The angle makes gmac’s wave look twice as big, then his marketin bs team does the rest, and the media eats it.

  • Sorry

    Stop hating on Garrett. Get out there yourself and surf big waves instead of hating on him on the internet. Not that I like the guy but he’s living life. Be it Shawn Dollar or McNamara or any other surfer in the world, lets REMEMBER they’re not heros, no matter how the media tries to put them on a pedistal.

  • Mik

    I don’t know Garret, so I have no opinion as a person, but that wave was HEAVY… And even if it didn’t, as some are saying, break top to bottom, he didn’t know what was going to happen when he took off… And I guarantee that ALL of the haters here would not have gone. They wouldn’t even get in the ocean in that environment. So Garret is a charger. He went after the biggest wave that the ocean could throw at him, and he dropped in. Gnarly. Fact.

    And on the other hand, I have had the positive experience of surfing with Shawn in Santa Cruz, and he is both friendly and rips: big, small, whatever. So congrats to him for his growing stature. Deserves it, totally. A quiet legend.

  • bufu

    Well said Mik.

  • bufu

    Oh yeah stupid pointless article. Nice job Chas

  • G unit

    I guess since gmac is not an industry “bro” you have to rip the guy. The non surfing public doesn’t care about paddle vs. tow, they only care about the size of the wave. Total shame you a$$holes have a problem with the guy because he does things differently than your industry “home slices”. In the end both a great surfers, one has a “crappy job” working for reef while the other surfed probably the biggest wave ever ridden. I guess both at least get legitimate money unlike a lot of guys these days collecting unemployment like government teet sucking locusts to fund their surf trips.

  • Jax

    Agree 100%
    GM is a just a kook…
    let’s forget him…

  • dgb

    I don’t think Surfing mag have really grasped how to conduct their online writing course.

  • Squidlips

    Seriously! SD charges and lots of kudos to him. He’s one of the shining paddle surfers that’s making comps like Mavs amazing to watch.

    GM have been charging for years. Pointing a finger at GM you might as well include Laird, Double D & Dave K. They were the guys who made tow surfing what it is today. It’s two different surfing disciplines, don’t get it confused!
    Rant over…

    PS check out what Chris Bertish have been doing… Planning a cross Atlantic SUP crossing (for charity). XXL & Mavs winner with NO sponsors & self-employed!

  • Norcal

    Garret charged, but Shawn rocked it! Dollar is owed on that one, check the side shots…I guess Shawn just needs to call MTV to edit his vid, and have his agent call Wolfe Blitzer next time.

    Billawrong!

  • dumb

    terrible. this is worse than Stabmag.

  • Jimmy the Saint

    Dear Chas,
    I didn’t renew my Surfing subscription partly due to your writing. There were other reasons of course, the magazine looked like some toddled had scribbled all over the text with highlighers. Then there was the absence of a letters page, the over realiance on certain teenage surfers, a page for ‘core score’(what?), a page for ‘vs’ (huh?), a page for ‘girl in a shirt’ (why?) at least two pages of content dedicated to up and coming groms (whatever!), some surfers personal shit (yawn), some shitty article about some underground music (this magazine is supposed to be about surfing), the Brazil issue (the real clincher to be honest), I could go on… Bascially in a nutshell, your magazine is more concerned with being cool than having quality. I think your writing embodies this ethos. But the funny thing is the only thing I miss about the magazine is the way your writing pisses me off. That is of course the whole point, isn’t it. Chas – you really need to stop trying to be Hunter S. Thompson (everybody who tries fails), stop trying to come across as cool in your articles (you don’t), stop believing that repeating a phrase lends some gravitas to said statement (it doesn’t, it doesn’t). Having said all that I do think you have some talent as a writer, you certainly have a talent for pissing me off, but still I can’t help myself from reading your articles.

  • IsoceleseTiangle

    Woah…
    Forget the wave for a moment and that Anderson Cooper “duded” GM but, on a scale of 1 to 10, what is the creep-out factor of Mc Namaras, Charels Manson / Ax Murderer looking eyes during his Skype interview with Anderson Cooper?
    “Put’s the lotion on the skin”, or what?
    Made my skin crawl.
    And Chas, you are still the consumate, poseur / douchenozzle non-journalist par excellance …

  • Richo

    Chaz… Have you ever surfed anything over 6ft? Seriously, you suck!
    #unsubscribe due to douchebag chaz. Who gets called Chaz in any case?
    Kisses for you Chaz

  • BoneFish

    Just another great way to start a stupid blog that makes fun of humans and no real substance….

  • masniffur

    maybe Lost can give Jimmy Provalone some work but make this dude charge Mavs…

  • dirk

    I think the real question here is,
    what would Jesus do?
    amen brothers. keep it real.
    be safe out there.
    xoxo
    gossip girl

  • adam

    cmon guys! tighten up the articles!!!!

    -ALL made really good points! Chaz clearly is not the guy who should be writing an article comparing two legend big wave surfers… Leave the fashion crap to him… Both these guys both DESERVE waay more respect…
    -If u dont got anything good to say… dont say nothin at all… Seriously read Squidlips comment… lets hear about Chris Bertish!!!! dont hate on Gmac b/c he knows how to sell himself, the guys been chargin just as hard as anyone for years! and dont beg sympathy b/c S.D. has a job? so does 90% of the whole Mavericks lineup! the guys has a family obviously he’s prob stoked to have job security and support his family!
    this article is shameful?
    Good for Shawn, bad for Garret, and poor form for Surfing.
    Leave the guy alone!