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Name- Matt B.

Stance- Regular (sometimes Pig Dog, sometimes Stink Bug)

Board- Main board is a 6'4" Fish; 9' CC (nose) Rider from Bruce Grant on the way--I'm stoked!

What got you started surfing- I moved to California in '94 and didn't learn then for fear that it was all I would ever want to do. 2 1/2 years later, John, the first surfer I ever really knew, died at age 29 (no it wasn't from surfing!), and I realized that if I didn't learn soon, I probably never would, it's the only thing I ever want to do...

What keeps you surfing- It is the most fun thing I that bad?

Most memorable surf- Superbowl Sunday '98. San Onofre was pretty much double overhead and mostly closed out--the biggest I've ever seen it there. My friend Rob and I were hung over and late getting down there, it took 10 minutes to get outside, and I was so freaked out by the size, I didn't even catch a wave. Rob did. Afterward, we ate pancakes at Tommy's Family Restaurant in San Clemente, and the waitress was a pretty strawberry blond named Kelly. How's that for a memory?

Dream surf trip, whether you've already taken it, or dream of going- I want to go back to France in the late summer and surf Hossegor, Anglet, Guethary, and also Mundaka in Spain on a nice healthy swell. The waves are fun, the Cote d'Basque is beautiful, the food and wine are fantastic, the people are nice, and even the ugly girls are good looking.

Favorite break- LA: Zeros on a huge south swell, and another spot I can't mention. VENTURA: Gotta be Hollywood-by-the-Sea SLO: Cadiz -- not the greatest break, but the only place I know where you walk across a cow pasture to get there. SD: Blacks Beach. Mex: uncrowded San Miguel (yeah, right!)

How has surfing changed you- I'm happier, more confident, and on a day where I've had a really fun session, everything else is easy. I also know how lucky I am to be able able to do I'm a more grateful, mellow person.

What do you do when there are no waves- Besides pray for swell? I bicycle, read, listen to music, hike, and take photographs.

What are you trying to do or learn to raise your level of surfing- Surf every day I can, and go even when I know I might not make the drop...

Favorite surfers- Rob (best buddy), Joe (pushes me and snakes me), Carolyn (for making such a cool site and letting me spout off), Veena (will be when she's no longer a kook-ha!), Bruce Grant (surfer and super shaper), Kirk and Conan (the Nordic Twins), Scott (though I think he got married and quit) Heather S. (she's truly surf crazy!), my neighbor Stuart (may be the nicest man in the world), Marissa (surfing lawyer), Jessica and Alan (Surfrider Vounteers extraordinaire), Laura (honorary--she can't even swim!), Rennie Yater (yes I have met him), Randy Wright (he's ridiculously good and totally unafraid), Josh the Preacher (rules Drainpipes and Zuma), and John (R.I.P.).

Surfing pet peeve- Snakes of course; also spongers in my way (they are so vulnerable down in that water, I fear for them!); dudes who ask me for the time (get a g*dd*mn watch!)

Ideal surf conditions- Slightly overhead, semi-hollow beachbreak that seems like reef surf because the rides are so long!

Anything to add- Carolyn rules?