Editor’s note: Things have been a little crazy for Matt Meola recently. If you can’t understand why, well, you’ve been camped out under a rock (it’s at the 5:50 mark). He’s flown into the company of Kelly Slater with the Spindle 540 he ever-so-slyly snuck into his recent edit, “Home.” So he has plenty of people asking him all about the air, the mechanics of it all, and even the claim. What many may not know is that Matt wasn’t even trying to boost a 540 to begin with. He recounts this, along with how pissed he was leading up to that one wave, while giving us the play by play.
That was a super frustrating two days of really good waves actually. And I just couldn’t pull it together. I was out of rhythm. I wasn’t on the best waves, I couldn’t land anything, and it was the last swell of the winter. I felt like it was my last chance to get some clips. So the first day I went home empty handed. No clips. But on the second day, I just reminded myself to keep a good attitude so I could rip. But the same thing happened. I was completely out of rhythm and just totally blowing it. They were the worst two sessions ever, but somehow that last wave everything came together and made it all worth it.
I stayed out way longer that day than I usually would have. I was determined. The waves were still really good. Some of the boys were out and they were ripping and getting clips the whole session. My buddies went in and I decided to just stay out until I did something. So I’m all by myself and then the wind just switches from kind of a side onshore to a bit of a side offshore. The waves got a little smoother and a little better. And when that wave came through I wasn’t trying to do the 540, I was just trying to pull the spindle flip part and land straight. The wave was so good that it popped me real high. Halfway through I’m thinking, “Holy shit I’m still spinning!” So I just braced myself for the landing because usually they’re pretty gnarly, but this one ended up being a little cushy. Next thing I know I’m going straight to the beach like, “Oh my god!” As for that claim, I had no control. As soon as I spun around I was so blown away by what had just happened that my arms immediately hit the sky. Everyone thought that was hilarious. People say that’s how claims are supposed to be: uncontrollable.
After that I just sat on the clip for a while. Everyone wanted to know what I was gonna do with it. I wanted to put it in the edit, Home, but I had a ton of magazines calling for it, asking what I was going to do. John John even called and said, “I want it in my movie,” but he also said I should do what’s best for me and that the best thing for me was probably to put it out myself. It started to get stressful. I’ve never had so much pressure thinking about making the right decision for something like that. I finally decided to just keep it in Home and let everybody see it when the edit dropped. It was crazy that something that’s been so celebrated could still be pretty stressful. But overall it’s been a great experience.