Editor of Kiteboarding Magazine
Turns A Corner ... Lookout World!
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I ran into Ryan shown to the right at KiteForGirls in Miami, FL, USA last weekend. We started to shoot the breeze but the next thing I knew, this guy was going off passionately about safety, responsible riding and working to keep the good times flying. Spot on stuff too but a bit of a surprise. Nothing is as constant as change though.
It didn't end there either. Ryan described how he has spent a lot of time talking to people in the last six months about what they want to read and see in print. We are talking kiteboarding ... BEYOND the MAUI zone! Not just the Pros mind you but the 39 yr. old dentists, the 22 year old carpenters and the 34 year old boat captains, in other words ... US! The guys that buy the gear, magazine and ride the ride, makes sense to me. Ryan related that he cruised through and talked with riders at LOTS of launches over these months, places like Michigan (?), parts of California & Florida, the British Virgin Islands, Hawaii, Australia and more. Beyond that he has been quizing tons of folks via email from all over, asking "WHAT DO YOU WANT TO SEE?"
Ryan told me he wants to go global and to expand beyond the few regularly frequented high wind destinations, repetitious partying jags and take riders and readers to where they have never been before. New and rarely explored launches both at home and abroad, "how to" articles, GEAR, safer riding, a woman shredding on the Cover, more women's interest articles and more.
One expression of this new outlook is TWEAK McCore, actual Kiteboarding Comic Satire (KCS)! We are talking trendy humor with a message brought to you while shredding close to the flame of reality. I'm stoked to see it and have wanted to do some comic telling satire of my own for years in an effort to effectively throw out some ideas. Problem though ... I CAN'T DRAW, AAGGGGHHH! Good news though, Carl "Los" Preston can and very well as you can see above. Carl is an active snow kiteboarder in the prime big wave shred zone known as IDAHO?! True story, the land of Spuds has brought us the Tweakster with a message. Good on you!
Another surprise for Ryan was a couple that attended the Miami Event with the guy decked out in a custom home airbrushed tee ala Tweak McCore ...
The artist, the shredder and "Randy Ravioli", Ryan's handle in the Beotch Zone, at the beach.
Tweak and his cadre of styling surf dudes and decapitated bystanders provide a vehicle for Ryan through Carl to look deeper at the B.S. that goes on in kiteboarding, to poke fun and to highlight areas for improvement. Ryan tells me that he wants to take steps to do things that will positively impact the sport. Sounds like a good goal and a consistent one with what the editor of the leading kiteboarding publication in the USA should get up to. Ryan told me that the brand that in part fired him into this direction was the passing of his close friend, Peter Nordby during a tragic kiteboarding accident. Peter influenced so many people during his life and he still is today.
So, this is all going to happen overnight right, next issue at totally new approach, right? Wrong. Business is business and change is a process that often happens gradually in a measured, give-take fashion and often by committee. So, look close and encourage the flame of change when and where you see it. What is it Cheech and Chong had to say about Santa Claus? Oh, yeah the dude had to go underground, too many guys taking pot shots at his reindeer and trying to take his magic dust. So you have to look closely, be patient and encourage what YOU want to see.
Also, as Kevin Costner said, "If you build it, they will come." That is IF the mag. continues to break away from traditional well traveled paths and departs into new, intriguing parts ... then we'll come and in ever increasing numbers. Circulation goes up, advertisers continue to buy out space and the mag. prospers ... CHA-CHING. Sounds like a win-win-win to me and ultimately the sport wins with improved safety-sustainability and a better informed ridership about what counts and is of interest.
Something else that you can do...WRITE to Ryan and tell him want you want to see and read. Your ideas will fuel this change as much as anything else, so contribute. Constructive criticism is fine but complaints are relatively easy to come by. Inspired ideas and desires for new articles that is something different and will stand out. So, drop your ideas via email to the man and watch for things to develop at:
**Oh and as a special perk, HEEEERRRREEE'SSS TWEAK!!!
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More snatches from "The Kite Beotoch Chronicles" will be uploaded periodically, so stay tuned and keep looking for Santa Claus, uh magic dust, no uh Kitesurfing (whoops, Kiteboarding), Magazine ... hell just stay dialed for the Tweakster ... more fun to come.