Surf’s Up

Looks like all of our problems are solved.

That’s right, Californians can rest easy now that we have an official State Sport. Sorry, rest of the US, you’re on your own.

Okay, yes, I’m sure it was an important lack. After all, every other state already–what? Really? Only twelve? Never mind.

Seriously, though, surfing is now the state sport of California. And yes, I’m sure the five percent of Californians who surf* are totally stoked, Dude. And yes, I know surfing is totally identified with the state in the public mind, thanks to fifty years of music and movies. I’m even aware of California’s many contributions to the technology of the sport.

* That’s a guesstimate. Various surveys show the Californian surfing population somewhere between 1.1 million and 2.5 million. The total state population seems to be right around 40 million. So, five percent.

But, really?

No, I’m not bothered by the fact that surfing is already the state sport of Hawaii, where it was invented. After all, rodeo is the state sport of South Dakota, Texas, and Wyoming, and they seem to be sharing the burdens and joys without significant conflict. And Delaware’s state sport is bicycling, and I’m quite sure bikes weren’t invented there.

I just wonder if this was really the best use of the government’s time. Especially in an election year, with a hell of a lot riding on the results.

I’ve seen it suggested that this action will help fight federal efforts to open the California coastline to oil drilling. Excuse me while I go laugh myself sick.

The bill was authored by a Democrat. Maybe it’s an effort to recruit the surfer vote. “Democrats made surfing the state sport, so come out and vote against Republicans.”

You know, now that I say it, that almost sounds sensible, compared to most of the political news. Maybe we could swing a few older voters further east with similar strategies. Any Democrats in Nevada and New Jersey want to sponsor legislation to make gambling your state sports?

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