Australia is a big, lucky country. 25,670 kms of coastline, chock full of bays, points, pubs, and pro surfers that I've disparaged. There are some places in the surfworld that it may prove unwise for me to visit - Brazil, Basque Country, the North Shore... places where I've stirred the pot enough to expect to deal with consequences.
In all honesty, I did not think Australia was one of those places. Usually, Aussies are more likely to "get" my sense of humor. They've been raised with piss-taking, and most Aussies aren't egotistical, sensitive divas who suffer from insecurity issues.
So when I scheduled an Australian stopover last week, I figured, "no worries, mate." As mentioned, it's a big fucking country, and I didn't plan on visiting the Gold Coast or Maroubra or other areas where Aussies-who-hate-me happen to live. Then Jed Smith published his
"I’d love to meet him face to face. It wouldn’t go real good." Drew told Stab.
Flash-forward to the present. I'm standing in a parking lot in rural New South Wales, off the beaten track, looking for a little solitude, hours away from any city. I've barely seen any other surfers. So it struck me as a bit strange when Drew "Benjamin Button" Courtney pulled up and parked next to me.
What are the fuckin' odds? Of course, I was compelled to introduce myself to Mr. Courtney. If nothing else, the result would be post-worthy. Naturally, the conversation was a wee-bit awkward, as I'm sure both of us felt the coincidence to be a bit too unlikely to chalk up to chance. There was part of me that wondered if Ben Button was stalking me, so I can only assume that Ben Button, faced with the unfathomable improbability of encountering "that seppo" in the middle of nowhere, must have assumed I was stalking him.
No punches were thrown. I gave Drew my usual spiel about why I write what I write, and he mostly just stood there and nodded pleasantly. "Well, nice to meet you, anyway," Mr. Courtney finished with. He was true to his word, I'll give him that: I met him face to face, and It didn't go real good. Ben Button didn't say or do one goddamn thing that was interesting enough to post about.
Damn you, Drew Courtney! Well played sir. Well played.