Erik Logan is already suited up when he slides into his souped-up golf cart, a light blue stand-up paddleboard tenuously strapped to the roof as he drives from his Manhattan Beach condo a few blocks to the ocean. The sun is just coming up over the horizon and the winds are light. The South Bay has waves on this crisp, late-winter morning. Good, clean waves, as waves go in this part of Los Angeles County.
Sporting short, closely-shaven hair, Logan takes a deep breath before taking his first steps into the sea, hops on his board, and paddles out to find his own peak, respectfully avoiding the crusty longboarder with the beard and giving the teenager space to throw the airs he won’t land. This has been Logan’s routine for nearly a decade now (“Oprah would refer to it as my church,” he told me). At one point in his surfing journey, he might have been spit on or hissed at for riding his SUP in an L.A. lineup. But he ignored the catcalls, eventually becoming as local as any other South Bay transplant. He gets more than a few “hellos” these days, having won over those crusty locals with his easy smile and relentless positivity.