Thursday, October 6, 2011

"A Day With Corny Cole", by Cal Porter

As a tribute to his surfing buddy and lifeguard pal "back in the day", Cal Porter has written the following short story about an epic day of surfing at Malibu in 1948! So sit back and enjoy this rare and wonderful story.


"A Day With Corny Cole"

Malibu Surfrider, 1948. Photo Courtesy & Copyright Cal Porter.

One day not long ago Corny Cole and I were gazing at this photo that is blown up and framed hanging on my wall. We reminisced about that day in 1948 when the six of us decided to all get on the same wave and have a girl we knew on the beach take our picture. The camera was mine, and from the looks of the photo it must have been a cheap one. If you can believe it, we were the only ones in the water on a pretty good day of surf at Malibu, but that’s the way it was back then. In the early morning five of us had jumped into Corny and Peter Coles’ 1930’s open air Packard Phaeton automobile to make the trek to Malibu from Santa Monica. There were Buzzy Trent and Don McMahon, who were Santa Monica Lifeguards, Peter and Corny, who were just 17 and would be lifeguards in another year, and myself, a Los Angeles County Lifeguard. We met up with friend, Kit Horn, who joined us on the wave. Corny’s memory was better than mine and he said Peter was the first on the right, Buzzy was the fifth, I was the skinny guy third from right, and he thought he was number six. Surf legend, Bob Simmons, joined us in the water later, and Corny said we visited with surf greats, Matt Kivlin and Joe Quigg who were on the beach that day. Corny recalled that he, Peter and Buzzy were all riding Simmons boards while I was on my old Pacific Systems balsa redwood. What a great day that was with a bunch of great guys.

This isn’t exactly Corny’s Packard, but if you put a few dents on it, dirtied it up quite a bit and stuck in five or six surfboards angling skyward this is what it looked like. Photo courtesy of Cal Porter.

Cal Porter


Copyright Cal Porter 2011. All Rights Reserved. Used here with permission. Please do not reproduce without permission of Cal Porter.

*** Many Thanks to Cal for sharing this wonderful story and tribute to Corny Cole.


Until next time.....

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