Byron Bay, Aus. — Lifelong Byron resident and surfer, Luke "Jebbo" Jebson, has had a difficult time readjusting since waking up from a 45-year cryo-sleep last week. Jebson was allegedly frozen in a makeshift cryo-chamber back in 1972 after a long night at the local pub.
"We were at the ol' watering hole and Jebbo was proper pissed after about 12 pints," says longtime friend Joel Rimkey. "Jebbo was going on about advances in board design, saying, 'Mate, if we've come this far with surfboards in the last 5 years, imagine where we'll be in 50!' After a while he had the whole crew all fired up, and Jebbo just goes, 'That's it boys, throw me in the freezer! I'm not coming out until we're riding solar-powered spaceships with 13 fins!'"
According to Rimkey, they took one more round of shots, then wrapped Jebson in a bunch of torn out pages of Tracks Magazine and placed him among the frozen fish in the pub's walk-in freezer. The plan was to leave him there for the next 50 years, assuming that by then Byron surfers would have reached a level of performance and sophistication previously unimaginable in 1972.
"The pub changed owners a few times over the years, but most of them were pretty cool with keeping Jebbo in the walk-in," says Rimkey. "But when it got sold again last week, the new manager said, 'No way.' He wanted to class the joint up, turn it into a nightclub or something, and having ol' Jebbo in the freezer didn't sit right with him, I reckon."
Rimkey and friends grabbed the frozen-solid Jebson from the freezer, and brought him back to Rimkey's house, where they set him in a bathtub full of hot water. Forty-five minutes later, Jebson climbed out of the tub and immediately headed down to the beach.
"As soon as I got down to The Pass, I knew the whole freezing thing hadn't worked," says Jebson. "I mean, it's still just a buncha longhaired blokes riding downrail single-fins. How long was I out for, a couple of days?"
When his friends pointed out that it was in fact 2017, and some of these surfers were actually riding thrusters, quads and other fin setups, Jebson was crestfallen.
"Mate, in the late '60s and early '70s, we went from riding 9'6"s to 6'4"s, and it seemed like we were just getting started," says Jebson. "Are you trying to tell me that people are still riding foam and fiberglass with wooden stringers, and the only thing that's changed is a few more fins here and there? You've gotta be taking the piss."
Just then, a surfer wearing a beavertail wetsuit stood up on a head-high wave riding a transition-era mid-length. He stood rigid through his bottom turn, then shuffled awkwardly into cheater-five position before getting lipped in the head.
"Oh, f–k off!" said Jebson, watching the wave unfold.
At time of press, Jebson was looking into renting space in another of the local pubs' walk-in freezers. "This time I'm not coming out for at least 100 years," he says. "Someone will make a rocket-propelled board, or a board that reads your mind, or something worthwhile by then. If I see one more single fin, so help me…"
[Editor's note: "Corndogging" is a satirical column in which we take serious surf issues, dunk 'em in the ocean, and roll them around in the sand for awhile.]
[Title Photo: Tom Hawkins]