Monday, June 26, 2017

The Legends Series: INTERVIEW -- Socks Clawtooth (Originally Posted 7/24/2008)

Within the pages of SurfWatch is the rich history of Second Life (SL) surfing from the mouths of the surfers that created or developed or promoted or excelled in this virtual sport over the years.  Enjoy these interviews and the perspective from these surf legends as SurfWatch begins "The Legends Series".

By Tauri Tigerpaw. Exclusive to SurfWatch.

SurfWatch thought that it was about time to interview our own Socks Clawtooth, who not only compiles the Socks' Rough Guide to Second Life Surfing, writes surfing lifestyle stories for the SurfWatch blog and contributes to SurfWatch Results competition coverage, but is also a creator of surfing and furry accessories, a surf store owner (Surf-FUR) and the director / producer / main protagonist in his own Second Life surfing videos. So, there was lots to talk about!

We know that curiousity killed the cat, but we have to ask how did you become a surfer?
Socks Clawtooth:
Literally, the first night I was on Second Life. After the 'n00b Island' horror [shudders], my first sim hop was to Weather Island.

SurfWatch: And there you spotted the Epic?
Socks: Well, you can't really miss it. I went there for the skiing, honestly. Real life, I'm a snowboarder, but the surfing was one of the reasons I wanted to try it out.

SurfWatch: How did you know there even was surfing? Did you see surfers there at the time?
Socks: [laughs] Well, not really. I've got friends who got me into Second Life in the first place -- local furs who were into it for a long time. So I asked them, 'What's there to do?' And I was directed to a few web pages of travel blogs. One mentioned 'virtual surfing' at Weather Island, so that was my first stop. It was fun! It took a little time to get my bearings, but I figured out, Oh, the surfboard goes in the water, not worn. But I took to it like... umm.. a cat to... water!

SurfWatch: So were you hooked from the get-go?
Socks: Pretty much.

SurfWatch: Who or what in Second Life surfing has had the biggest influence on you in terms of the way you ride?
Socks: Wow... As much as I'd like to say it was one thing or another, there's a lot of influences and tidbits. For the most part tho, I just do my own thing. Colleen [Brennan] has given me a lot of insight; Kimmy [Fitzgerald] has given me insight; a lot of other riders have, too. At SJ3, I learned a lot by watching people ride and thinking, "I didn't know you could do that!" But for the most part, I just kinda figure things out. I paddle at the wave, try silly things, then try to repeat them. And if it's repeatable, I keep doing it [smiles]. And I should mention this, too. I've taken a cue from real life surfing, as well.

SurfWatch: In what way?
Socks: After raiding youtube, I saw how real surfers work waves. And I try to emulate some of that. It's why I keep trying 'S' turns, half spins and stuff.

SurfWatch: I noticed the team tag - you're a part of Tsumani surf team?
Socks: Just recently, yes. Colleen (Brennan) and Abel [Halderman] have been wanting me to join the team for a while, but I didn't see what I could really add for them. But then they made a valid point about windsurfing and how it's growing in popularity, so I joined on as 'windsurfing expert'. And now they're stuck with me. Yarr!

SurfWatch: So, tell us about these videos that you've come up with.
Socks: [laughs] Real world crossover action! There's a guy, Matt Harding, he's been traveling the world for the last few years. Everywhere he goes, he videotaped himself dancing in front of monuments, or locations. So when I got my stuff together, I coordinated with another fur, and we started doing machnima style videos. Put one up of me surfing Majini as a test piece, then we went for it. 27 sims. It took a few days to film, but it was worth it. I think that between the two vids, I've covered most of the surfable beaches in Second Life. That being said... there's a lot of 'private sims' that are publicly accessable. [puts on pirate hat] YARRRR!!!!

SurfWatch: So how do you get the word out to your fans that another video is ready?
Socks: I have fans? I thought it was 'Oh man, than damned cat is back in the water!' Well, umm... passenger pigeons? In all honesty, I don't really make a big deal about the vids and stuff. I mean, it's just something I like to do, so I don't really advertise that they're out there. All the Second Life stuff, however, I do mirror to koinup, which is my Second Life photo page. I also maintain a photo blog on Livejournal, which has a lot of surfing pics too.

SurfWatch: You are one busy cat!
Socks: [sings Beach Boys song] I get around...round round, get around, I get around.

SurfWatch: What are your future plans for Second Life surfing? And don't get me started singing old Beach Boy tunes! I could go on forever!!!
Socks: [laughs and sings] I sit around, round sit around, I sit around! Ahh... future plans? Umm... Keep making surf wear. That's big on the list. Keep riding. That's pretty big, too. I'd like to help get windsurfing off the ground... well.... um.... yeah... Keep the Rough Guide to beaches maintained. That's high on my list, too. Possibly start working on a few other side projects, like the "4 sim epic fluffy".... ok I'm making that up...It's only 3 sims wide. The plan is to flood the Second Life mainland so it's 60 meters underwater. Then we SURF THE SIM! PARTY WAVE OF DOOM!!! 50,000 Second Life citizens, one wave! We just need to find an autorezzer that can keep up...

SurfWatch: So Socks, is there anything you want to mention that I didn't cover?
Socks: Umm... The Surf-FUR stores? There's two currently, Sunset Bay and New April Island, but that last store is being moved. Other than that... I honestly don't know.

SurfWatch: Well, I've really enjoyed reading all your SurfWatch articles and look forward to what you cover next.
Socks: Thank ya! As long as people like it, I'll keep doin' it!

Useful links

Surfwatch Surf Reports: Socks' Rough Guide to Second Life Surfing

SurfWatch: Where the hell is Socks?

SurfWatch: Socks Clawtooth on SurfWatch (Google Search)

URL: Socks Clawtooth on Koinup

URL: Socks Clawtooth on Livejournal

URL: Socks Clawtooth on YouTube

SLURL: Surf-FUR at New April Island
SLURL: Surf-FUR at Sunset Bay

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