The Pursuit Touches Down in Laguna

Isaac Hayes, the late voice of Chef on South Park, dished a lot of wisdom before he was mauled to death by a bear in season ten. But Aaron Lieber only saw one episode, and only paid attention to Chef's insightful line: "There's a time and a place for everything, and it's called college."

Timing is an interesting mistress for Lieber, who presented his long-awaited lovechild to the world Tuesday night in Laguna Beach. "The Pursuit," his action-stuffed answer to 18 months of heavy filming with a crew of young stars, premiered to a packed house with fans spilling into the aisles. ASR is just around the corner, the Boost Mobile Pro ramps up next week, and there's even a two-star running down the coast at Ponto. Everyone with an income tied to surfing is in town or in transit, hungry to see fresh clips and a crazy section for tomorrow's water cooler chat. Could the Timing be any better?

Well, let's get back to Chef, and to college being the time and place for "everything." He may not have had traveling the world on a surf-film adventure in mind for a full-on university student like Lieber. Yeah, fact. While most of his classmates are railing coffee and adderall just to stay awake in lecture, Aaron's been training his lens on the mile-a-minute antics of Sebastian Zietz, Dusty Payne, Jordy Smith and their globetrotting peers. And not just at the beachbreak down the road, either. It's been a constant stream of plane rides and boat trips squeezed between (or around or on top of) tests and term papers.

Also, "The Pursuit" comes hot on the heels of Taylor Steele's cinematic monolith - this summer's Dark Knight for the surfing world. After "Stranger than Fiction" made backflips the new foam climb, wouldn't it be safer to do, I don't know, an artsy film or something, so as not to compete head-on? Tough luck. Sometimes Timing sneaks off with your coworker at the Christmas party.

But all in all, Timing's been good to Aaron. She gave him two surfers with solid 'QS rankings in the top ten and a good look at qualifying, as well as current points leader Nathaniel Curran - whose overnight surge from left-field to center stage complements his video segment perfectly. Timing gave Lieber a huge performance from Mitch Coleborn, whose part in Steele's movie raised his profile sky-high in two minutes flat. And Timing delivered big moves from Seabass, Dusty Payne and Torrey Meister - three outer-islanders whose stars are aligned for the big show; "The Pursuit" might just be their debutante ball.

So while Aaron may have a few assignments to make up and extensions to beg for, his career in surf media is right on track. As a first effort, "The Pursuit" offers loud music and loud maneuvers from a group of surfers who might not be in your DVD player yet, but certainly will be from now on - the Timing is just right.

ThePursuit Trailer 2 from AaronLieber on Vimeo