Surfing with Team USA: Dreams of a Comparatively Rather Old Girl

I have decided to become an Olympic champion surfer. I think it might be too late for Tokyo, since the games have already started, but I am paddling towards Paris 2024. When I told my mother about this new life goal, she duly noted that the next summer games are actually only three years away, which is good news because that is less time to worry about the unexpected, like injuring my MCL or getting struck by lightning. I just need to buy a surfboard and learn how to surf from YouTube.  

My passion for surfing started after vacationing at the beach and walking by a surf shop on the way to a bar. The shop had a large sign that read, “Surf Lessons” and there were people in bathing suits crossing the street, toting boards under their arms, lining up at the shop door, probably to get their gold medals. I continued to the bar and had four Michelob Ultras to officially start my training as a professional athlete. I might be a new face to Olympic viewers, but I have been dreaming of this moment since Memorial Day weekend.

After looking at the fresh faces of the USA surfing team, it is pretty clear that what they are missing is a 46-year-old poser. There are only two men and two women per country right now, and I do not want to unseat anyone, so I am willing to go as an alternate. I could be a real asset to the team because I can probably pass a drug test, as long as Xanax is not considered a performance enhancing drug, and the Olympic committee doesn’t have to worry about me having sex with anyone in the village, at least this year, because COVID made it so nobody could bring their dad.

Before I set my sights on being an Olympian, I was just planning to take some lessons, but then one morning on the beach I saw a group of small children in a camp learning to paddle and riding the boards in on their bellies, and I am pretty sure I got the gist. I have paddle boarded, and I am extremely good at standing on the board if there are no waves. Also, I have never drowned in a giant wave pool, and in addition to all that, I have seen the movie Point Break

If I am going to put all this time and money into a new hobby where I could find solace in connecting with the ocean while simultaneously working on my fitness, then I should at least make it aggressively competitive. If I quit my job and move my kids to the coast and start doing two-a-day surfing sessions for the next three years and do not get eaten by a shark in the meantime, then I will probably be able to qualify for something, like perhaps a conservatorship.

If for any reason, I am not a natural water shredder, and when I looked this term up, Google made suggestions for “water shedder”, so I learned a lot about losing water weight, but if it turns out that I am not the fifth best goal-oriented surfer in the country, then I have some back-up plans of other sports that should be deemed Olympic, so I can fulfill my dream of being part of Team USA, like maybe Pictionary, the game of quick draw or Taboo, the game of unspeakable fun. I don’t even need to hone my skills—I can get on a plane to Tokyo right now, motherfuckers.

However, I feel fully confident in my Team USA surf plan. I have also considered learning to do tandem surfing tricks with my dog, the only Labrador retriever who doesn’t know how to swim, but all that means is she is damn sure not to going to fall off, even if what she really wants is to escape to shore and find a lawyer. I have not seen any tandem teams, so obviously this will add a degree of difficulty to my maneuvers, which is what I will need if I want to medal in Paris—the surfing capital of the world.

P.S. If anyone has a surfboard I can borrow please let me know.  

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