As a young man growing up in Ventura, California, I spent my summers with my friends scouring the coastline between Ventura and north toward Santa Barbara looking for the perfect wave. Unlike my brother, Mark, I never became a very good surfer. But to this day, I still love the ocean, and on occasion I will paddle out in search of the perfect wave and a long ride. Unfortunately, especially these days, I spend most of my time under my board and under water.
The key to surfing is position and timing. First, you have to paddle yourself into position before the potential wave, and then, you have to begin paddling hard at the right time to get into the wave. And, finally, you have to keep paddling until you’ve been caught by the wave and are now moving under its power not your own. Only then can you stand up and ride the wave. If you start paddling too soon (or give up too soon) the wave will pass you by, but if you wait too long, the wave will grab you and throw you head over heels.