Heading for a session in the slate-grey Pacific slop beneath a high sheet of grubby clouds, I pattered down the concrete steps of stairway 25 off the VFW's parking lot at Ocean Beach, my 6'9" plastic Wayne Lynch replica board under my arm. Smoke from a wood fire, with some heat still in it, wafted over the stairway, lightly stinging my nostrils. Sitting in the sand just to the south, left of the stairs, were a man and a woman, the fire in a shallow hole, and three yellow dogs. The bottoms of the man's jeans were rolled up and his feet were bare. The jeans wire dirty in a way that money can't buy - dirt-saturated with actual dirt, almost shiny, like leather. Dungarees.
"Smells good," I said.
He grinned. "Have some!"