There’s this strange notion that once you’re a surfer (whatever that means), everything else in life takes a backseat to waves. It’s a stupid notion. While surfing is one of the best things in life, there are a lot of other things that are just as good. The Malloy Brothers have that figured out, I think.
Before I started working full time for this website, I did a lot of different jobs. I worked on pipelines in the winters. I was a forest fire fighter in the summers. I worked in a mill, I was a plumber, a pipe fitter, a snag faller, and finally, a utility arborist. Somewhere in there, I went to school for Communications, the vaguest of all diplomas. I wrote freelance for magazines just because I liked doing it. I surfed as much as I could between work, but never really put a huge importance on it–it was merely something I wanted to do as much as I could, but never something that really took a front seat in all the other shit I had going on in my life. I was barely ever on a computer, didn’t have a cell phone, and social media was the furthest thing from my mind. Now, of course, surfing and the internet is front and center ever day; between reading about it, writing about it, and surfing as much as I possibly can, it’s always right there. It’s wonderful. But the idea that a “surfer” needs to only be a surfer and nothing else is a ridiculous one.
The Malloy brothers are lots of things. They are, without a doubt, three incredible surfers. But they’re also family men, fishermen, hunters, and general outdoorsmen. That, as far as I can see, is something that is falling quickly by the wayside in many people’s modern lives–a connection with what is really real. The three brothers have created a life far more real than what is generally sought after–and what is quickly becoming the norm–and judging from my own experience, that lifestyle is far more rewarding.
A few days ago, I read a quote that depressed me: “Even though it’s a virtual world, I feel more alive in here than I ever did in the real one.” It wasn’t a real person that said it, but a character in a story about a time in the future when humanity had created a virtual reality mass multiplayer role playing game. But still, it echoes the sentiment of many, I think–a detachment to real life in favor of a fake one held in the vastness of the internet.
The Malloy brothers are living a very real life, full of difficulties and struggle and fun. Because the best things in life aren’t free, as they say, and the sweet ain’t so sweet without the sour. Hard work is good for the soul. Finding those real moments in life is better. And living a life where those moments become your constant reality should be what we’re all striving for.