Slices From The Pie
B. B. Riefner
The first slice involves two Canadian males from Manitoba, which is landlocked and that could be used as an excuse for their stupidity. Street Norris wanted to believe that neither of them had ever seen a wave before, especially waves twelve to fifteen feet high, waves which produced terrifying undertows and generated enough power to pull a body surfer’s trunks down around the ankles, the twenty footers which could break bones and kill if the challenger made even the slight mistake in judgment, waves which attracted imbeciles, daredevils, travelers, and professional surfers to come and test their mettle at this still undeveloped West Coast Mexican fishing village called by visitors like Street Norris, The Pie.
He met them after a sunset that was spectacular even for a place claiming some of the best sunsets in the Western Hemisphere. Mark, very lean and dark complected, claimed to be a long haul trucker and Nick, blonde and Hollywood handsome was a bricklayer. ‘We’ve been friends since we could crawl around the yard and poop in our diapers,’ Nick offered as they sipped beers.
Before they went off to bed, Mark said, ‘We’re here to ride the waves until the money runs out.’ That was when Street and the other three veterans told them they had to be very careful.
‘Study the home cooking before you get in. These waves have killed lots of surfer. The rule you never break is when you get on top, look down. And if you don’t see anything but sand, you got to get off that instant,’ Norris concluded.
They both listened carefully, but the next morning when Norris ventured out on the beach, they were both about to drown in the big breakers. They were in the Death Zone where the most powerful waves curled, tipped and crashed down like great green and white fists.
Street was not certain he could manage to save even one of them by himself. He was about to run and get help from a group of beach boys kicking a soccer ball on the other side of the hotel grounds, when a huge breaker lifted them. Fascinated at their potential death, Norris watched their bodies slowly somersault, in the translucent centrifugal forces. Then one of them shot out like a torpedo and surfed along the breaking wave until he was flung up on the beach.
Street ran, trying to reach the floundering body before the next gobbling surf pulled it back. Before he got there the man was on his feet, turning to stare at his friend, who by some miracle had surfaced like a bobbing black beach ball amid the fearsome foamy water.