Baby, Take it Off! is Chas Smith’s column. “Surfing is so totally awesome sexy!” says Chas.

Welcome, Nike!

Totally welcome! It's great to see you, hot little thing. You sensual publicly traded darling.

Nike, with other non-endemic corporations, has been milling about our surf industry for some time now. It signed the young and fabulous Kolohe Andino a few years-ish back and it signed the slightly older but just as fabulous Julian Wilson, like, yesterday. And, again, welcome!

Some of surfing's active online community really don't like the intrusion. They have simply had enough. "This isn't a reflection of ME anymore!" they scream from their mothers' basements as they forcefully dip Domino's buffalo wings into ranch dressing. "I hate this commercialization of MY pastime! Nike doesn't tap the source!" (As they write certified letters of complaint to the Home Shopping Network and dream about retirement). But Nike is such a glorious and welcome fit.

A diversified and competitive marketplace always equals a better product. Nike brings billions of dollars plus scientists plus Chinese manufacturing plus Mars Blackmon plus billions of dollars straight into our world. They'll make better things. And they'll make Quiksilver et. al. make better things too. Win win for me! Win win for you (if you don't live in mother's basement) (If you aren't completely atrophied) (If you aren't posting your tres radical opinions underneath online articles).

Competition in the marketplace is the very breath of innovation and innovation is fun! Innovation led to the modern thruster, to the wetsuit, to slob grabs, to skinnier jeans. Innovation will lead to a little bit wider but better cut jeans (super skinny is out out out!). It will lead to new materials/processes/ideas that make riding a wave even more pleasurable. Innovation. Yeah!

Also, Nike brings a fresh perspective. As a company, she wasn't born from surf like the rest of our noble brands. She born from track 'n field, which ain't so cool but that's ok. Nike has proven over time, and through numerous sporting world conquests, to have a knack for awesome. I remember the first pair of Air Jordans I bought. Wow! That leather! Those see-through air pockets! Wow wow! Not being genetically attached to certain inalienable surfer rights gives Nike the ability to push further. To question the whys and wherefores. To innovate! Sacred cows be damned! Yeah! Wow! I trust Nike to bring the wow to surfing. And I hope under the Nike moniker, not the misguided 6.0 one. I am not a fan of fluoro orange.

Also also, in retaliation for Nike's definite and full entrance in our surf world, some fresh Newport Beach nouveau punk children will form up an exciting brand and make the best outfits ever. Or Lost will rediscover its former glory and make the best contra campaign ever. Win win win win win!

So bienvenue, you goddess of victory. You divine and sultry pillar of American might. Welcome and may your run be long and profitable.

Allez au diable vous les communistes et les croyants dans l’égalitarisme internet!

Btw, I write these words from the St. Regis, San Francisco. Modern, blonde, supple, luxurious. My gorgeous woman is here watching a BBC James Bond marathon. I am drinking the dirtiest martini. San Francisco…what a town! What a life! —Chas Smith