A recent article about Cleveland surfers
— you know, those dudes who brave hypothermia and feces to catch waves not unlike those at the YMCA lap pool — is holding steady as the most-emailed story on New York Times
web site. The story, penned by one Christopher Maag, is what literary experts might call "some nasty-ass prose."
"Surfers watch their friends for signs of hypothermia, urging them to leave the water when their eyes glaze over and their words slur. Ear infections are a common affliction.
"To reach the lake, surfers drag their boards across snowdrifts and beaches littered with used condoms and syringes, Mr. Ditzenberger said. The most popular surf spot is Edgewater State Park. It is nicknamed Sewer Pipe because, after heavy rains, a nearby water treatment plant regularly discharges untreated waste into Lake Erie."
Now, before you start complaining about that turtle-neck wearing, curly-haired punk from New York swooping into town for some quirky feature that disses Cleveland, you should know that Maag is a turtle-neck wearing, curly-haired punk from Cleveland. In fact, he used to write for this very rag, but The Management got nervous when Chris — yeah, he was just plain old Chris back then -- kept talking about the International Monetary Fund during drinking benders. Unfamiliar with the term, The Management feared Maag might be a terrorist or, worse, from Seattle. He's since been begging to come back -- we're thinking about it. In the meantime, he's been forced to slum that New York paper and something called Time
magazine, which is apparently a periodical devoted to clocks or something.
Anyway, if you want to Maag's surfing story, you can do so here. — Joe P. Tone