Long ago, surfers accessorized with bongs and puka shell necklaces. These days, however, they're often packing a weightier object: the Bible. And why not? Verses like Psalms 104:25 -- "the earth is full of thy riches. So is this great and wide sea" -- resound with people who pretty much live in the ocean. Jonah 2:3 ("thou hadst cast me into the deep, in the midst of the seas; and the floods compassed me about: all thy billows and thy waves passed over me") sounds suspiciously like getting barreled. A special-edition Surfer's Bible comes with comparisons between surfing and religion, biographies of Christian surfers, and a high-gloss cover that's water-resistant. It even includes a "parable of the four grommets."
A long list of surf professionals are outed Christians: legendary Tom Curren, surfboard shaper Al Merrick, influential longboarder Skip Frye, and women competitors Rochelle Ballard and Sofia Mulanovich. In particular, a whole crew of kids from North Carolina's Outer Banks consider Jesus their homeboy. Best-known among them is Noah Snyder, the first kid from the region to make a living as a pro surfer. Snyder told the Christian Broadcasting Network he'd been feeling empty for quite some time when a friend invited him to church. "I cried and I wept," he says, "but at the same time, I felt a true love in my life that I had never, ever felt before."
With the film Noah's Arc, Snyder and friends are spreading the word of the Lord -- with blaring soundtracks and radical surfing footage shot around the globe. The movie documents Snyder and six other surfers who commit their lives to God. Along with Snyder, it features 2001 world champion CJ Hobgood, his brother Damien, and pros Matt Beacham and Jesse Hines. When the film has its South Florida premiere tonight at Huizenga Plaza (corner of Andrews Avenue and Las Olas Boulevard, Fort Lauderdale), Snyder and Beacham will be on hand for autographs while local surf shops give away merch. Bands start playing at 6 p.m., and the film screens at 8. It's all free. Call 954-427-7442. -- Deirdra Funcheon
Please Tease Me
It's more tease than strip, but lesbos and their friends get to pole-dance and grind away at the Amateur Strip Tease Competition every Thursday night at Cloud 9 Lounge (7126 Stirling Rd., Davie). The person who teases best, as determined by audience response, wins $50 cash, with a $25 bar tab for the runner-up. Most of that probably goes to Body Shots -- for $2.50, one person gets on the bar and another one gets to lick the liquid off her body. Word has it that the straight men in the club try to buy Body Shots for the ladies so they can watch. It's mostly women who enter the contest, but anyone is allowed on stage. Promotional coordinator Kika Solis says the contest draws the whole range of body types. "If you can name it, it's been on this pole," she says. "And the audience cheers." Contestants can't strip beyond underwear, so it's all about attitude and poles and simulated sex. Solis adds, "We have the best teasers in Broward, hands down." No touching on stage, but tips are permitted. Show starts at 11 p.m. Admission is free. Call 954-499-3525. -- Karen Dale Wolman
The Mein Attraction
Chinese art brings good fortune
It is said that, circa 551 B.C., Confucius busted out with, "Man who stand on toilet high on pot." And the Chinese have been bestowing brilliant gifts upon the world ever since. They gave us the abacus, the compass, gunpowder, and spaghetti. Later came fortune cookies, artwork for our tattoos, and a big-ass wall to look at when we're cruising outer space. In addition to these many amazing contributions, the Chinese developed a unique style of painting -- light and airy yet painstakingly detailed. Art historian James Cahill has collected a bunch of such works -- on fans, scrolls, and album leaves dating from the 12th to 20th centuries -- and dropped them off at the Norton Museum of Art (1451 S. Olive Ave., West Palm Beach) for your viewing pleasure. Check out "Masterworks of Chinese Painting: In Pursuit of Mists and Clouds," which opens today and runs through January 9. And remember: Man who walks through airport turnstile sideways going to Bangkok. Call 561-832-5196, or visit www.norton.org. -- Deirdra Funcheon
Pilots loop and whoosh through the airspace. U.S. Navy Leap Frogs sail the skies with blue and gold parachutes. As its title implies, the Sixth Annual Pompano Beach Air Fair offers plenty of action overhead. The event also features entertainment of the non-aerodynamic variety. Pretend to be part of the crew at a replica of a NASCAR pit stop, and check out motorcycle drill teams as they perform precision routines. Enjoy street rods, muscle cars, and other tricked-out vehicles at the auto show. Other activities include a children's area, a 5K walk, and a '50s sock hop. The events take place from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at the Pompano Beach Air Park (1001 NE 10th St., Pompano Beach) Tickets cost $7 for adults and $3 for kids, and parking costs $2. Call 954-782-7287, or visit www.airfair.org. -- Patti Roth