Thursday, December 16, 2010

The Magic Carpet Ride in Cardiff, CA

On my way home from work I can take the freeway - "the 5," as it's called - which I usually do, but if there is a lot of traffic, I take the turnoff to the ocean and drive up Highway 101 - the coast route.  Then I pass by a sculpture in Cardiff that has an interesting story.

Per the North County Times, "The surfing sculpture has had a bumpy ride.  "The Magic Carpet Ride" was unveiled in Cardiff in July 2007.  Unofficially, locals dubbed it the "Cardiff Kook," criticizing the surfer's stance of a novice." 

This is the sculpture:

The Magic Carpet Ride, July 2007

People have been surreptitiously decorating it since then, and every so often a photo appears in the paper, such as:

Snorkel goggles, a bonnet, women's underwear, and an umbrella in August 2008

 This was Easter weekend April 2009
 Fourth of July 2009

 "Jaws" July 2010
The shark had a stealthy start. Papier-mache fins were spotted across the highway prior to the "attack" and the fins had moved closer to the well-known statue over the course of a week.You can barely make out two gray fins on the ground in front of the "shark."

 Clown with balloons - August 2010

Zorro - September 2010

Breast Cancer Awareness Month - October 2010

There are more, but you get the idea.  I drive by the statue a couple of times a week, but I have never seen one of the costumes.  At least, not yet...   : )  It's kind of a fun thing - of course, the sculptor is insulted.  He doesn't like people making fun of his sculpture. 

I saw the surfer statue when I took the coast route this morning - traffic on the freeway was awful with the rain - well, kind of rain.  Really just drizzle on and off.  Clogging the freeway.  What would San Diego do if it snowed?  We couldn't cope.  Coming from the Sierras where it snows in the winter and people just go about their business, it's absolutely amazing to me that a little drizzle almost doubles my commute sometimes, but it does. 

That's all I've got for today - a little bit of local history.

From Me and My Dog, Katie, have a great Thursday, everyone!  : )


  1. It's amazing what people can think of. Some of those decorations are pretty innovative!

  2. Very cute. Looks like the Sculpter would be flattered.. Otherwise it's a pretty common piece of work.

  3. What a great story! Hopefully the artist will get over it eventually and enjoy the creativity of the others.

  4. I REALLY like this! One question - where is Cardiff? I can't find it on the map.

  5. SO COOL! This is the kind of local color I love. Sounds like the artist needs to consider not taking himself so seriously.


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