There are photos of Hobie Alter that hang all through the office. Hobie making one of his first surfboards, Hobie standing in the window of his first surf shop, Hobie sailing in his Cat, Hobie jumping his dirt bike, Hobie talking over a surfboard blank with Phil Edwards, but, no photo truly captures what is at the heart of Hobie the brand and Hobie the person quite like the iconic photo above. Hobie Alter, cruising across the water on a surfboard using a beach umbrella as a sail.
Before Hobie went into the surfboard business, he developed three rules that would become the basis for the way he approached his lifetime of work and would be the framework for “The Beach Lifestyle”. We won’t wear hard leather shoes, no jobs that require a suit and tie, and never work East of Pacific Coast Highway. They sound so simple to us now, but at the time this was an unheard of approach to life. But, that was Hobie. He knew that it would be possible to create a work life that supported his beach life! And, he knocked it out of the park for himself and for the generations of people who will come after him!
That is why we love and treasure this photo so much. It shows to a T that Hobie was a man who could have a good time. He loved nothing more then to make people a toy and a game to play it with. He showed the world what a strong work ethic could achieve while still making time for fun and never losing sight of your core principles.
So, with our founding father in mind, we gathered up a few members of The Hobie Surf Shop team, grabbed surfboards and beach umbrellas and set out to channel our inner Hobie and sail across the flat waters of Doheny! You should know, that “sailing” with an umbrella is a bit more complicated then it looks. It takes a few tries to get yourself set, but once you are moving, it feels like you could make it to Mexico under umbrella power! The other point about surfboard sailing is, it is impossible to participate with out laughing your head off. It’s just about the silliest, most enjoyable, goofy, thing that has been done on a flat day!
Which, again, takes us back to that photo of Hobie. It serves as a constant reminder that we are here for a Good Time. Let me say that again, we are HERE for a GOOD TIME. Nothing that we do here at Hobie ever needs to be taken so seriously. We make toys. Plain and simple. Toys with games to play them with. And, that makes us just about the luckiest people around! Get out there today. Alter your boundaries and redefine fun! That is exactly what Hobie would be doing if he were still with us here today! -Tracey Engelking