Curt Carlson aka ‘Shrimpo’ 11.11.62 to 1.14.14

Curt Carlson aka ‘Shrimpo’ 11.11.62 to 1.14.14

1981

2010

REFLECTIONS OF THREE

Sometime things come along in life that just shouldn’t be, and this is one of them. An aggressive inoperable brain tumor forced Curt to leave this world all too soon. He was one of kindest, humble people one could ever meet, but faced with a challenge, he was tough as nails. Given even a small chance by the Doctors, he was the kind of guy that would have beat this thing. He chose, in his words, not to be a ‘guinea pig’ and to ride out the 5 months he was given with the best quality of life available to him. He did this without self pity or a trace of rancor. He was a living teaching to all those with him in those last months.

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This past Saturday about 200 friends and acquaintances turned out to pay their respects. Shrimpo told his Mom that he didn’t want any big to do, or a paddle out for him. That was Shrimpo to the end; totally self effacing. Well, he couldn’t stop friends and loved ones from gathering in the late afternoon at the beach where he first began surfing; but the big swell with consistent 100 yard closeouts  pounding Pierpont Beach insured his wish for no paddle out would be fulfilled. As things turned out, it was a low key heartfelt  send off, and a beautiful ‘sunset for Shrimpo’.

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From Duncan:

Shimpo_2Shimpo arrived to live with us on the North Shore in 1982 on his return from Australia. He had been traveling with Malcolm, Lise, Robert and Maria on what i think was his first surf trip abroad. I had been working all summer trying to meet our deadline for the opening of Cafe Haleiwa, which was scheduled to launch on Nov. 23rd.  As it turned out Nov, 23 was the day Hurricane Iwa hit the Hawaiian Islands.

Shimpo and Davey Miller were living with us, that being, my wife Jacqie, and our two daughters, Noelle, two and Megan, one year old at the time. This was a giant storm and when it hit it took out both Oahu and Kauai with winds up to 120mph. It was a full two week without power, gas for our cars, or water. Although it was rough we all stuck together and made the best this crazy situation. Shimpo and Davey would help haul  the dishes and laundry down to beach to be washed then back to the house.

Davey and the Shrimp were a big help with the girls, they made them laugh and watched over them like good big brothers.

When the Cafe finally opened, Dec, 7 Shimpo stayed on as our first dishwasher. He worked 7days a week straight without day off for the many months he was there. By mid winter he and Davey along with Shaun Frasier moved into the Cafe, in the one room flat up stairs. Now I had ‘Pierpont Rats’ living at the Cafe.

Shrimpo a I surfed many days together during 1982-83 season, which saw one of the best big wave years since 1969. At one point it was over 18 feet for 20 days in a row with light winds and glassy conditions. That year Shrimp, at the age of 19, surfed the ‘Big Three’ –  Pipeline, Sunset, and Waimea Bay.

Mr. Poh was my biggest fan, always saying I was ripping at Pipe, even if it wasn’t true.

Aloha to my friend Shrimpo.

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Epilogue:

It was late one night, maybe 11: or 12: am when I receive  distressed phone call from Miller down at the Cafe, he sez,  “Duncan you need to get down here right now, Shrimpo pulled a chefs knife on us!”

I said: “boys, I guess Shrimpo has just became the King Rat, your on your own, I’m from Oxnard.”
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From Fynn:

It was sometime in the 70’s. The exact year is a little fuzzy in my recollection, as is a lot of that particular decade, but I believe I was somewhere in the vicinity of 18 years old at the time.  The place was Schoolhouse Jetty on Pierpont Beach. That beach, at that particular point in time, was ground zero for what to this day is one of the largest packs of underage, unsupervised surf kids I have ever seen in my life.

They dubbed themselves The Rats. The name was apt. They were raucous, mischievous and borderline delinquent to full-on criminal. As far as The Rats were concerned you were nobody if you didn’t surf and if you were a surfer from anyplace other than Ventura, you were an interloper at best, an enemy at worst. They were a juvenile surf gang. Like many gangs, The Rats were formed for neighborhood defense, protection and various forms of social deviance and camaraderie.

Acceptance into the rats frequently seemed to be accompanied by the bestowing of a nickname. I don’t know if they held a meeting or took a vote, but somehow I doubt if it was that formal. By whatever mechanism they were chosen, a lot of those nicknames, regardless of time or change, seem to be for life. Although I was beyond the age/demographic for full Rat status, they even bestowed a nickname on me and almost 40 years later, I still hear the name on occasion.

I remember when he first showed up. Or at least I recollect when I first became aware of his presence. He was small and fragile looking. A skinny little kid with twig-like arms, blond hair, an intense gaze and a nose that seemed slightly too large for his face. By this time, The Rats had already held the meeting, the party, taken the vote, or utilized whatever mechanism they utilized in the selection of nicknames. For better or for worse, he was Shrimpo.

Shrimpo? I remember laughing. They’d nailed it with this name. Or at least at that time I thought they had nailed it. At some point I noticed something about him though. That skinny little kid had guts. Sand sucking close outs on a day far too large for the jetty didn’t slow him down. With no ride to anyplace that would hold the swell, Shrimpo would paddle his small frame out through the onslaught of closeouts, pick one seemingly at random, turn and go. He’d pull into close out after close out. Take the beating for a second or two of tube time and then paddle back out through the mess to do it again. We’d pull up to check the surf, see him abusing himself, laugh and drive away to find something more organized, leaving Shrimpo and the Rats to their closeouts. At that point however, one thing became evident to me. Shrimpo may have been small, but there was at least one thing about him that was over sized, his heart.

As I look back, a lot of the details of particular days and sessions from those long-past years have blurred with time. There is however one particular day that I will never forget and the story of that day is, in my mind, definitive of the Shrimpo I know and love.

Summertime in Ventura can be slim pickings for a surfer. Many times the south swells just don’t seem to make it around the corner and/or thread the needle through the Channel Islands. During one of those particularly desperate stretches of time a couple of us decided to do the unthinkable and make a trip south to Malibu. Somewhere along the way as we were getting ourselves together we ran into Shrimpo and he talked his way into a spot in the back seat.

Upon arrival, Malibu was about head high and crowded. All the standard clichés regarding crowded Malibu were in full effect. Rules that were pretty much iron-clad to the North were almost nonexistent here, and indeed, any verbal criticism of questionable behavior was inevitably met with, ‘This is Malibu. What do you expect?’

In spite of the crowd, I remember getting waves. I was having one of those days when I seemed to consistently be in the right spot.  Somehow I was even managing to keep the shoulder hoppers at bay as I rode down the point. I was having a good time. Paddling back out, I could see Shrimpo sitting out there. He wasn’t getting anything. He was sitting there waiting and waiting and just not connecting with a wave. Finally, on yet another paddle back out, I saw him scratch into one. He was in the right spot. He had played by the rules, there was nobody behind him and it was a set wave. That wave was his.  Until three guys dropped in on him like he wasn’t there. I remember him straightening off with his hands in the air and a look of disbelief on his face. Welcome to Malibu kid.

As the day wore on, the pattern continued. I saw him take off on a number of other waves and every single time, nobody would give the little blond kid a shot. As far as the crowd was concerned, he was invisible. A nonentity, an undersized kid who could be taken advantage of in the name of greed. I could see the frustration and anger building on his face as the day continued.

Finally I saw Shrimpo paddle outside and off/away from the point. It looked to me like he had given up and voluntarily taken himself out of contention for another wave. Head down, shoulders slumped and way out of position, he appeared to be defeated. And then, a set wave appeared on the horizon.

The pack started frantically scratching for position as Shrimpo sat out on the outside and watched. Three guys dropped in on the wave as others jockeyed for a spot to shoulder hop the three that were already up.  Suddenly Shrimpo started paddling with purpose towards the wave from the outside. The pack was entirely in-between him and the point. No one was outside of him. He paddled like a maniac, digging hard. Somehow he got to a section out on the shoulder that allowed him to catch the wave out in front of all the guys already up.

Fair enough. The crowd had been abusing him for hours. I surmised he had decided that if he couldn’t beat them playing by the rules, he would join them in anarchy. I stopped paddling and watched him come to his feet and then… cut back? He did a top turn and faded left towards surfer on the outside. I assumed he was planning to turn back the other way at some point, but I was wrong. Shrimpo went left at Malibu. All three of the guys on that wave probably had 50 pounds or more on him and he plowed into the outside surfer’s rail with an audible crack and then launched himself into a swan dive in the direction of the curl. He in effect became a human wrecking ball and took everyone on the wave down in one of the most audacious things I have ever seen.

At this point I’m a little angry as well as concerned. I started paddling towards the scene of the collision assuming I was probably on my way to a fight to save Shrimpo from the retaliatory violence I believed was now sure to happen. As I paddled, I saw everyone surface post collision and watched as the older/larger guys untangled their boards and assessed their dings. Shrimpo stayed right there treading water, glaring at them defiantly. It was an obvious, in-your-face fuck you to all of them. For that matter it was an obvious fuck you to the entire place. Then something amazing happened.  One by one, all the big guys briefly looked over and met Shrimpo’s glare and then quickly looked down or away and pretended he wasn’t there and this hadn’t just happened. Not a single word was spoken as they gathered themselves and paddled away. It was one of the most defiant, courageous and angry things I have ever seen and I loved him for it. That little kid with the huge heart had shamed us all.

There are a few other stories that come to mind, but I won’t tell them. He eventually grew up and became a little too large for the nickname “Shrimpo.”  Which didn’t matter. The name still stuck. My son met him a few months back and was laughing. “How does a guy that big get called Shrimpo?”

That led to a recounting of much of the above by way of explanation which in turn led to me putting this down on paper. He’s still Shrimpo. He’ll always be Shrimpo. By all accounts he faced death the same way he faced that wave full of Malibu kooks. Head-on and with courage and spirit. Game to the end. I hope I can do as well when my time comes.

I have to confess that I am a little bit pissed-off at him right now. He’s not supposed to do this first. He’s going out of turn. Charging it. I’ll get over it though. My anger is more than overcome with love and admiration.

See you on the other side brother. Hold things down until the rest of us get there. We’ll miss you.

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From Malcolm:

I met Shrimpo in ’78’ or early ’79’ when I was shaping at Ventura Surf Shop. He was the first young local Ventura kid to order a board from me. It was just one of those unique things in life, in that from that point on he became like extended family. In 1982 he came to Australia with my wife and I. It was his first adventure outside the US. We surfed a lot of great waves at Burleigh Heads. We’d get up before light to sneak in a few before crowd. During the time we were on the Gold Coast the World Amateur Championships took place at Burleigh. Shrimpo knew Tom Curren a bit and we grabbed him one day and went for a surf at Surfers Paradise. There was almost nobody out and the waves were really good. Thanks to Shrimpo that was a day I will never forget. As I recall, Tom won it.

Lise and I went on to Western Australia to visit our friends Robert and Maria Moynier. Shrimpo stayed behind for a couple of weeks and Richard Harvey kept an eye out for him. It was one of those ‘pushed out of the nest’ moments, but he pulled through, and was all the stronger for it. When he caught up with us we went on a whirlwind tour of the Margret River and south west coast area. We visited a large subterranean cave, and with much trepidation, we went up to a forrest lookout platform at the top of a 300 foot tree. We were both scared of heights, but when we saw a 10 year old girl come bouncing down the circular staircase we looked at each other, laughed and said, “we gotta do it”. Sitting up there, the tree gently swaying, and overlooking the eucalyptus forest is another unforgettable moment with Shrimpo. Lise and I left for home a few days before Shrimpo was to head to Hawaii and connect up with Duncan.

Robert recently reminded me of a funny moment he had with Shrimpo. They had gone out to get some lunch and Shrimpo ordered a cheese burger. When it showed up, he took a bit, had a look at it, and said indignantly to Robert, “Where’s the burger”? Robert said, ”It’s a cheeseburger”. Shrimpo retorted, “but where’s the burger”? Well he found out that in Australia, a cheeseburger is just a freaking grilled cheese sandwich. In his last days I just had to mention that story to him. He didn’t have the strength to laugh, but he give a slight smile. During our 35 year friendship there have been far too many  great moments to mention. Suffice to say, through all the ups and downs of life, he maintained a wonderful and rye sense of humor. The sound of his laugh is something I will never forget.

Needles to say, all that had the pleasure to meet him are the better for it. From Curt, to Shrimpo, to Master Poh, his was a life well lived.

Peace, Love and Light………………

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  • I surfed with Curt from the early seventies at Ventura Pipe and the jetties. We would sometimes jump in my 68 chevy truck hit Oil piers and the gold points. When pierpont was on school house would be sometimes much better than dredge. I remember surfing on school days. Shrimpo would get up early and watch until he had to go. It was a real magic thing. He gave me more confidence in my surfing than my family, Allen Main and other friends combined. Always SO stoked. In 1980 I got to the North Shore he was already there. He basically coached me in the Pro Class Trials at BIG sunset. He had more confidence in me than I had in myself. I don’t think I would have done as well there without his pointing out little facts and things on the beach before the heats. He was smart. Real smart. He had a very serious condition about me surfing for Ventura on the N Shore. I had a natural nack at sunset the first few years. I would try to hook him up with waves. But at big sunset you have to sit in front of these spooky monster looking waves with a crap lode of trade winds join up the face. And they can fake you out and make you paddle to far out. I talked him into following me ALL the way out the back. And told him to stay 4 feet to my side no matter where I went. He trusted me 100%. Lucky we never got caught inside. It was kinda big. I paddle for a scary looking Hawaiian 12 foot wave. “20 plus face” He did as told paddled like a nut and dropped in just next to me. I was SO stoked. Once he was up and made the drop he was fine and we both made the wave all the way through. There is so much more I want to say about him. I love him like a brother. I know you Shrimpo. I know your in a good place, I did not have the courage to speak at the beach. I hate crying in public. I hope I can pull my life together in enough time to hang where you are bro. Davey.

    January 28, 2014
  • Jay Lujan
    REPLY

    I love hearing these old stories about Curt. Unlike all of you, I didn’t know Curt in those early days. I learned to surf in 81 at Silver Strand, but grew up inland. As soon as I could I moved to Ventura, Pierpont to be exact. This was the early 90s. Being a transplant, I was pretty apprehensive, and kept a low profile. Eventually I got to know a few of the guys, and when I expressed that I’d like to pick up a used Bonzer, Shrimpos name came up. The 1st time I met him I could tell he was sizing me up quite a bit. Once we started talking Bonzers though he lit up and treated me like an old friend. I’ve picked up a few Bonzers off of him over the years. Seems like he always had one on order. Every time I’ve seen him since that 1st meeting he has greeted me with a smile and that Shrimpo laugh. I considered him a friend and was stoked whenever we crossed paths. My heart sank when I heard he was sick. Sure will miss his sly sense of humor and his unique perspective on things. Smart guy indeed. Pierpont won’t be the same without him. Take care Shrimpo, and I do hope our paths will cross again. Jay

    January 28, 2014
  • David Kennedy
    REPLY

    Sad news. Curt was a genuine character with heaps of soul. I have found memories of him and the Cafe’s early days. The North Shore was not gentrified in the least, in fact it was down right raw and for the most part a buck’s party, hardly a girl in sight, so your friendships were how you spent your time between surfs and work. He was always good for a smile and a laugh. Sounds like a loving and fitting send off. Thank you for all sharing your stories and intimate details, it feels good to connect to those times in our lives and to release the brothers spirit so completely. Amen.

    January 29, 2014
  • Steve Kaufman
    REPLY

    Unlike most of you I didn’t know Shrimpo from surfing. I knew him from from work. I first met Curt in 1997 working at The Good Guys in Ventura. I had worked for Circuit City the 3 years prior and needed a change of scenery. I remember my first day there Curt watched my like a hawk as often the case when any new salesman arrives on a commissioned sales floor. Curt’s reputation preceded him as the top dog there so I first felt “this guy isn’t going to like me too much.” I couldn’t have been more wrong.

    Curt immediately asked me if I wanted to “marry” him which in sales means partnering up to split commissions. It was a method for two or three guys to box out the sales floor and make all the money. Curt and I spent the next 8 years married! 3rd people came and went on our little team, but Curt and I never deviated. In the last conversation I had with Curt we joked I was the longest relationship he ever had!

    In those 8 years I watched what I now know to have been a phenomenon at work. Simply put, Curt was the best salesman I had ever seen and he had the strongest work ethic I had ever seen. Now, I’m not talking about salesman in the slimy used car way. I’m talking about a guy who put his customers’ needs first, always doing what was right for them knowing the money would take care of itself….and it did. In 8 years, Curt never missed a single day of work. I essentially learned my life trade from the guy and to this day, EVERY DAY, I employ things Curt taught me in my current career as an insurance agent.

    More than just working together, over those 8 years Curt became one of my closest friends. We were both “half-Jews” and that gave us another instant bond. I can remember many days going to down to Curt’s house on Pierpont in the morning before work with his mom cooking us breakfast of lox, eggs, and onions…typical “Jew food”. A nice sushi lunch on our days off was pretty common too. Ironically, even though we worked in a technology business, Curt wasn’t much of a technology guy. He never even had a cell phone during the 8 years we worked together. If you wanted to hang with Shrimpo, you had to do it face to face!

    In 2006 I left California and my wife and I moved to Florida. I lost contact with a lot of people, but not Curt. We would talk at least every couple of months remembering “the good old days” and always planning to see each other again if one of us made it out the other’s way. I only found out a few weeks before Curt left this world he was actually sick and I realized I had talked to him twice with him knowing he was sick and he never even mentioned it to me. At first I was a bit angry, but I quickly came to realize Curt was just being Curt and that anger quickly faded. He didn’t want anyone to have the burden of worrying about him and looking back at how he lived his life it’s obvious that one sentiment was always a driving factor in everything he did. Curt believed in living in the moment. He told me about the 6 months he spent surfing in Australia and I asked to see some pictures. Curt didn’t have a single one! To him life was RIGHT NOW and in hindsight I can totally understand now, even though I didn’t at the time, why he didn’t have a single picture.

    I can count on one hand the people who have had a major impact in my life and I count Curt as one of those people. He lives on every day as I constantly catch myself doing things because I learned them from watching Shrimpo sell. I’m so happy I got to speak with Curt one last time after finding out he was sick. This one last time he did allow himself the indulgence, in his mind, of reminiscing and I am thankful I got to tell him the influence he had been on my life.

    Curt, AKA Shrimpo…..you’ll be greatly missed, but never forgotten. I hope you are catching big barrels every day with no Barneys for miles! RIP brotha, you will always be loved.

    Steve Kaufman

    January 29, 2014
  • Duncan here.

    Captions for my pictures.
    1) Shrimpo, Davey, my wife Jacqie and Noelle.
    We are pictured here with free BonBons from Foodland. With the power out the market was giving out all the frozen goods for free. Shrimp and Davey went for the ice cream to share with the kids.
    2) Curt working at his dishing washing station. Yes, back then no shirt or shoes. Just as DK above said, not gentrified yet.
    3) Shrimp and Davey camped out with the girls. Noelle and Megan. LOL, Davey shooting the Peace Sign.
    D

    January 30, 2014
  • Thomas Davis aka: "TD" "Tommy" "Tommy D" or "Sensei"
    REPLY

    In memory of Curt Victor Carlson

    This is another part of Shrimpo’s life, I would like to share:
    The name “Curt Victor Carlson” was on Shrimpo’s first karate certificate for his yellow belt or 8th KYU. After that, that’s what I called him in class…”Curt Victor”. The guy most of us knew for his surfing, I was able to learn of another side of Curt Victor. As his Karate Sensei/Teacher, the spirit he had in the water carried on in his karate training. Curt traveled with me to watch my training with my teacher, Hidetaka Nishiyama, then on to summer training camps and winter camp at 6 AM in LA.
    He was so humble, I could not get him to test past his last green belt level test. Even though Nishiyama Sensei said he was “black belt” level in his training.
    I’ve got that Black Belt for you Curt Victor! YOU deserve it!
    For all of you who knew this part of His Life…OSSU- We Understand..
    See you on the other side,
    Tom Davis

    February 2, 2014
  • Mike " Nubes" Newman
    REPLY

    Hi everyone, just want to let all you know what a huge impression Shrimpo had on me growing up down in Pierpont. We had so many things in commen being from broken homes without father figures , but we always had each other and surfing to hold us together. Shrimpo was the big brother I never had, and really a teacher or guru as I called him who taught me everything from eating to just being a good person. We had some great talks his last few months and never ever broke down or blamed anyone or anything for his condition. By far the bravest man I have ever met. We all tried to talk him into a surf trip or anything he wanted to do but in the end he just wanted me to be his friend and enjoy this amazing beach we call home. I think his favorite thing to do was just to hang with us talking and then probably fall asleep on my couch! I know he’s making everyone laugh there butts off up there and surfing some insane waves so maybe if I’m lucky I will join him. Rest in peace Shrimpo, with Much respect and love. Nubes

    May 1, 2014
  • Rick Allen
    REPLY

    I was lucky to know curt through the years since the early 80’s. First time I met him he had his jaw wired shut. I loved reading the stories about Curt remembering the times surfing oilpiers, Pitas and the other nooks and crannies around Ventura. The last time i saw him was a few years ago or so. A big swell was hitting, after making it out the swell seemed to double in size at the pipe. After a few waves I found myself on the inside point getting sucked towards the pier. Out of breath and energy I was washed in glad to be on shore. As I looked to my right ,feeling like a kook, there was Curt aka Shrimpo out of breath and glad to be on shore too. I didn’t feel so bad we both looked at each other . I don’t remember the exact words we exchanged, but sh*t that was heavy, was close to what was said. I was shocked to hear he passed. So many good people leave this earth to early may we learn to live each day as Curt lived his.

    May 25, 2014
  • Scott "Laughing Boy" Ronald
    REPLY

    I first met Curt in the 4th grade, we went to the same school together, and right away, i couldn’t stand his little ass . . . He was loud, rude and up in your face. I was always one of the tallest kids, Curt, one of the smallest, and one day at recess he kept bugg’n and i shoved him to the ground, and i remember to this day how his face turned beet red and how he looked up at me, next thing i know, he’s on my back, arms wrapped around my neck, jerking back, screaming right in my ear eventually both hitting the pavement, with the recess lady standing over us, and fearing a trip to the Principal’s office, i spoke up and said we were just clowning around and there was no problem. That was the day we became friends. This was in Newhall/Valencia aka Santa Clarita. As we got older, 7th, 8th grade we all started skateboarding, BMXing, and Curt still remained pretty small in size, while the rest of us got taller, bigger, but that just made him that much more tougher, but at the same time he could get you on your ass laughing. I think it was in 76′ that Curt started surfing, he knew some of the older cats in town that surfed and eventually i was given a corner in the back of a truck and i started surfing as well. We were schooled on how not to be a kook, how not to be a Souther, you know, all white board, all black wetsuit, can’t recall exactly Curt’s board, i hooked up a 6’6″ William Dennis, and C street was where we learned. By 77′, 78′ Curt had totally been bitten by the surf bug, enough so that he was able to talk his Mom, Judy into moving to Ventura, Peirpont to be exact. I remember i came to spend the weekend, right after Christmas, and my Mom had scored me a brand new O’neill fullsuit as a gift, except it had yellow across the shoulders, and when i busted it out to show Curt, he looked at me like he was gonna puke, and said WTF, you can’t paddle out in this, i can fix this, and the next day we road bikes to William Dennis, and he got em to trade it for all black. After that we lost touch, i kept hitting C street, Oilpeirs and anything in between but i got all into this girl and well, you know. A couple of years later i stopped by William Dennis with my GF and Curt walked out of the back and i was blown away, he was as tall as me . . . Nothing was said, pretty uneasy, and that was pretty much the last time i saw him. I found out about his passing after i found some old pictures of Curt and me on Christmas day on our new BMX bikes hit’n some sweet jumps, and i got thinking that after all the years i hadn’t surfed, i think i need to to grab a board and start surfing again, and just by nature, went on the interweb and typed in Ventura surf shops. I then typed in Curt Carlson, Ventura surfer, which led me to the Campbell Bros. site and in all honesty, even after what, 35yrs with no contact at all, i found myself sobbing like a baby, and days later i still feel so bummed. I remember once, i was at his Moms condo in Newhall, his brother was giving us a hard time, Judy’s was screaming at all of us, and Curt suddenly breaks out singing that song ” Where are the Clowns” like at the top of his lungs then jumps up on his brother Ray till Ray got creeped out and split, then went and put his arm around his Mom and kept singing this sad ass song, till she stopped yelling, funny, funny s**t . . . RIP, my long lost buddy, you were one of kind, see you again on the other side. Laughing Boy.

    July 9, 2014
  • Mona Mansfield-Erhardt
    REPLY

    Wow… Curt… just stumbled upon this sad news. I met Shrimpo in 1979ish, I being the “weird girl from Ojai” that would take the SCAT bus down to C Street/the pier/Inside Point several days per week in the summer. He was so incredibly polite, sweet, and welcoming to this “outsider”, always had a smile ready to share. That summer, fall, and winter when I nearly “lived” at the beach is one of the only really happy times in my life that I remember. I cling to my one lone photograph of a long-since-removed wooden lifeguard tower sitting on a nearly empty beach… gone, never coming back. Bless You, Curt… enjoy the Light, and the Endless Summer of glistening, perfect waves that you so deserve right now. Those who loved you for life will be there soon enough, and will need somebody to show them around… <3

    July 30, 2014
  • Billy Gaddie
    REPLY

    My biggest mentor and hero
    Of all time
    L&R BILLY GADDIE

    August 26, 2014
  • Bobby Kotanjian
    REPLY

    Shrimpo a great guy!what a Rad place to grow up.gonna miss ya bro till we meet again.say hi to Sparky.

    November 22, 2014
  • Michael "Oz" Osborne
    REPLY

    I met Curt in 91 or 92.
    I worked with him at the Good Guys.

    His love of life, his fierce drive, and his unconditional optimism continue to inspire me. He taught me a lot, he was wise.
    In our lives we sometimes meet incredible people, but we rarely meet exceptional people.
    Curt Carlson was exceptional people.
    People like Curt are very rare.
    Curt was “never before, and never again” people. He was original.
    Our world is a better place because he was here, and our world will never shine as bright now that he is gone.

    Way too soon.

    February 26, 2015
  • Roy Hooper
    REPLY

    I worked with Shrimpo and Nut at Leo’s Stereo in Ventura in the late 80s and have not seen them in years. Now I found out that they both have passed. Good to read all the nice comments about Shrimpo.

    March 16, 2017

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