By Carson Cordasco
Intern meets girl of his (wet) dreams.
So, how did a lowly scrub like myself get to rub elbows with the glitterati and finally meet the six-time world surf champ and the girl of my dreams?
Here’s the deal. I’ve tabulated tons of statistics, stuffed heaps of envelopes, and typed thousands of words here in the Transworld Media offices¿all in an effort to move my way up the pecking order from lowly intern to that most-lofty of titles: senior intern.
But it wasn’t until the night of Tuesday, April 25 that my efforts finally paid off.
With extremely short notice, I was asked If I’d like to cover the grand opening of the Kelly Slater Quiksilver Boardriders Club store at the Universal Studios City Walk up in Los Angeles. Secretly, I was ecstatic and gladly accepted the suicide mission of driving through the infamous five o’clock traffic of Orange and L.A. counties in order for a chance to meet Kelly (the champ and I are on a first name basis now, so I can call him that).
With my laminated VIP invitation in hand, I quickly was granted access into Quiksilver’s new store before Kelly showed and had a chance to look around while I enjoyed the Hawaiian-style entertainment. My favorite Roxy model was there (I’ve had a crush on her since I was sixteen), but I could only summon up enough courage to take a picture of her and run.
Talk about Slater worship! In addition to brimming with the latest Quiksilver and Roxy schwag, the memorabilia in the store would make even the most embittered Slater hater appreciate the accomplishments of the six-time world champion. There was a “Kelly: The Early Years” display case with plenty of prophetic newspaper clippings claiming Slater’s future dominance while still in his early teens. The board he won the 1999 Pipe Masters on was there, along with the 7,000-dollar winner’s check that only Kelly could afford to not cash. Also, there was another display of the renowned regular-foot’s five favorite waves¿three of which were lefts.
After paying homage to the Slater shrine and staring at the hula girls for about half an hour, I decided to go outside and take a breather. What I couldn’t understand was why there were so many cameras and reporters outside. I mean, I know Kelly is big and all, but why was Access Hollywood and E! there along with a crowd of clueless tourists?
My question was quickly answered when I saw the paparazzi sprint towards Kelly as he rounded the corner holding hands with Pamela frickin’ Anderson! It was a total mob scene, but thanks to my trusty laminated VIP golden ticket, I was able to waltz right into the store in the wake of the Kelly and Pam¿much to the envy of many an on-looking tourist.
Inside, it was shoulder to shoulder with invitees, and we all jockeyed for our chance to meet the famous couple. Boy, were my hands sweaty. After wiping them off about 5,000 times on my pants, I figured I had about a three-second window to slap skin with Kelly before my hands got too clammy again. I saw my window, and went in for the handshake while he was in-between humoring groupies of lesser importance.
I pulled out before the perspiration poured in, after engaging in a leisurely twelve-second conversation with Kelly. I asked if he and Pamela would pose in a picture with me, so he pulled Pam aside for the photo op. She even said “hi” to me. Quiksilver big-wig Danny Kwock took the picture, and before I knew it Slate-Dogg and Pammy had left me to do interviews.
But that’s okay. I can die now. I have the photo.
Afterwards, the unfailingly classy Quiksilver threw a party at the BB King Club with hosted cocktails, appetizers, dancing, and music. Thank you to TransWorld for the internship and our friends at Quiksilver for the party. Thanks to you, I’m bros with the champ and even touched Pamela Anderson.
Not bad for a scrub.