In 2005 Jerry and I explored the possibility of joining forces to write about our early experiences of surfing in and around Santa Monica. The idea developed after the editor of an online magazine (since folded) sent me an article he'd written about Bay Street that claimed that he had been the first person to surf the area. I have changed both his name and the web address of his former website to protect the guilty.

From: Robert R. Feigel
To: Jerry Whitesides
Sent: Saturday, October 15, 2005 2:23 PM
Subject: Bay Street?

Hey Jerry - Gotta request for an article from the editor of this website: <>.

What I'd like to do is an article on "The Bay" before the beach road connecting North Bay and South Bay (Pacific Avenue) was severed by the Marina. The focus would be on Bay Street, but would include bits about all the surf beaches that were within easy driving distance of Santa Monica High School and SMCC - like The Lighthouse, State, POP, Venice Breakwater, Hubbyland and D&W's.

This could be a joint effort (no pun intended), especially since you were one of the few genuine locals. If you take a look at an interview the mag did with someone named Sherman Berman you'll see that there's a bit of re-writing of local history to support his contention that he was the first person to surf Bay Street. If he wants to be a legend in his own mind that's his fantasy to work out, but I'd like to see the record set straight.

There are a couple of ways I can see a joint effort working and you may have some other suggestions. My two would be for you to write about your reminiscences or I could interview you. This could be great fun and another generation introduced to your "modified Hopalong Cassidy surf-bike and homemade board-carrier with Flexi-flyer wheels." Naturally, there's no fortune in this for either of us, just fame ... but I'll publish the article on as well.

BTW - there are a lot of new photos and other images from Santa Monica, etc on I don't know if you've seen them, but the links follow. Aloha, b



Subject: RE: Bay Street?
From: Jerry Whitesides
Date: 10/17/205 8:05PM
To: Robert R Feigel

BF on Bay Street

I read the Sherman Berman story. Is it possible to write something more boring? Where's the humor and pazazz? I guess that's why your in line for perceptively laying down where the grunion run and the submarine races started. Bay Street.

I may have been in jr lifeguards with young Sherman. If memory serves he was sort of a dork. That's probably why he didn't know any one else that surfed. There were guys that lived right along that beach in the pre parking lot days when the SM beach was all the way back to speedway, that were so fucking good it would blow your mind just to watch them. John Pellicci, Phil David, Wes Wegner. Beach break masters, that lived within sight of 

the waves. 

I lived three blocks up the hill and every day no matter how early I got there, if the waves were good they'd already be out. There were real locals that had it wired before Sherman took his first butterfly strokes.

So Bobby. I think you have a lot more experience and may even have some Idea where you want this to go. Perhaps an interview version to get the ball rolling and we can see if something else come out of it. I'll do it as long as it's not for . Sounds like fun.

Surfed today. Stoked and sliding


PS Been traveling to Maui quite a bit. Reunited with a really good old friend Jeff Munoz, (Mickey's younger brother) We've been hanging out and talking story. He's a Tibetan Buddhist living in a isolated Retreat on the remote North side of Maui for the last 27 years. Clear and cool! Good stories.