20 Questions: Surfer’s Perspective – Curshaw MacTagairt

Part of a continuing series
submitted by Zelda Zimberman

Curshaw1. Name: Curshaw Resident (display name: Curshaw MacTagairt)

2. Team: Surfcrazy

3. Surfing Since: Dec. 2010 (this account), Aug. 2007 (my main account)

4. Favorite Board: Any SSI short board–comfortable, easy to maneuver

5. Favorite Wave: Teahupoo–realistic, a little more challenging

6. How did you come across surfing on SL and what was your first initial reaction to it?
I first discovered surfing under my main account, “F. E.,” at The Weather Channel Sims and loved it so much, I went to just about every surfing venue I could find. I liked that people in SL cared enough about surfing in RL that they’d created a way to enjoy it in SL. I created this account as a dedicated surfer in Dec. 2010 and started surfing comps not long after.

7. Are you involved in the SLSA (second life surfing association) in any way? (competitions, events, etc.)
My first comp was the St. Valentine’s Challenge, February 2011, and I actually placed! Well, I placed fourth, but… I placed. I continue surfing in comps and sometimes go to events too.

8. What are your thoughts or opinions on the direction on the SLSA from 2012 and beyond?
I’d like to see “Fun” included as an official judging category, but it wouldn’t be fair because then I’d always win every comp.

9. What do/did you find positive and negative about it?
How would you like to see it improve more?: Nothing negative. Very little drama. I’m very grateful to those who serve as judges and other comp personnel, who give up their own chances to surf. Even when they give me low scores, I kind of see where I went wrong. I’d much rather get an honest low score than an inflated high score, which I’ve never known to happen.

10. Do you compete in any surfing competitions SLSA or non?
Mainly SLSA–I do almost all the SLSA comps and a few of the non-SLSA ones.

11. What do/did you find gratifying and dissatisfying about  competitions?
I love the sense of camaraderie and how total strangers soon become friends. Also I like Rayzza’s infamous toilet humor. I can’t really say I find anything dissatisfying about comps.

12. How do you feel about the SLSA using non-SSI boards for competitions? (ex; HP5, LSD, Action)
It’s good to change it up now and then. With the HP5 you get more realistic action and there’s a learning curve, but it feels more intuitive. The LSD also has a different feel to it but not as much of a learning curve.

13. If you are currently inactively involved in competitions (surfing, judging, etc.) what was the reason for leaving? Would you want to come back and participate?  N/A

14. What are your thoughts on the team dynamics? Is there a team you particularly like?
I like how my team captain doesn’t drop me even when I get some of the lowest scores in the comps! Which team do I particularly like? Well, Mick would kill me if I didn’t say Surfcrazy, but I do have a spot in my heart for Tsunami too. I was approached by several people on different teams asking whether I’d be interested in being on their teams, and they were actually disappointed when I said I’d already joined a team! But I don’t really focus on the teams–more on the individual surfers. It’s always a treat when the heat draws have me surfing in the same heat as a legend like Bullet or Colls. That’s the beauty of it–when a commoner like me can surf right next to surf royalty.

15. Is there anyone on here that particularly had an impact when it came to surfing, mentoring, and overall being a role model for you? Who and why?
There have been so many that I really can’t name them all. Early on there was Abel Halderman. Of course there’s Mick Lunasea, my team captain. Colleen Brennan, Lanky Silvercloud, CK Carver, Jordan Mendle, and too many others to mention. (If you’re reading this, you just might be one of them!)

16. What was your favorite moment or memory on surfing here?
At my very first comp, I was treated like family from the start. I’d never even met these people and they still made me feel very much at home. At the end of it, someone said “You’re one of us now” and it made me feel so good.

17. Is there anyone you know or knew that isn’t active as much in surfing and would like to see come back?
I wish Philip Linden would do some comps with us. Actually, maybe he already does, as an alt. Ever notice Philip and I are never online at the same time? 😉 Earlier this year the answer would’ve been Colleen Brennan, but then we were all relieved when she came back from a months-long hiatus to join us again. We didn’t know what to think–she hadn’t been heard from since Christmas Eve and of course we all thought the worst (that she’d been kidnapped by Santa).

18. Many people have strong opinions when it comes to SL surfing and RL surfing. What is your take on the comparison?
SL surfing’s the same as RL surfing as to basic technique. Turning, paddling, etc., work the same way on the wave whether virtual or real–the only difference is whether you’re moving your feet and body, or making judicious use of your fingers. It takes just as much skill to surf in SL as in RL, though it’s not as easy to lose your balance in SL. Then some things are totally different–you don’t get water up your nose or sand in your shorts in SL, and can’t get eaten by (most) sharks. Of course I don’t use a board in RL, and that’s part of the beauty of SL for me–that I can be a board surfer.

19. Do you have any advice for new SL surfers on here?
Don’t worry about winning your first comp, or even your 10th. Just relax and have fun. Ten years from now, you may forget the money you won in a comp, but you’ll never forget the good times you had with friends.

20. Any other thoughts?
Wish I could take credit for this one: The best surfer out there is the one having the most fun!

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