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ISSUE 15 ARCHIVE - DIVING DOWNSIDES

PADI SOLO DIVER

I raised an eyebrow when I heard of this specialty. One moment it’s all about “your buddy this – your buddy that”, next minute you’re all on your tod diving merrily alone
in the vast ocean. If we can do without our buddies, all the better. As frankly I am bored of mine, despite her blonde hair and easy ways. But part of me wonders if this is just another way of making a buck for our fine American diving overlords. So BSAC – go kick some ass and counter with this speciality: ‘The BSAC non-diver certificate’. All you have to do is show how you can get up, brush your teeth and watch telly all day. Certed.

That’s how we do things over here, Obama.

[Sorry CMAS already do this in France. It involves drinking pastis all day and finding a new mistress. Ed]

GREAT BARRIER REEF

It’s not great.
There’s no barriers.
And no cannabis in sight.
Surely one for trading standards.

HEALTH AND SAFETY EXECUTIVE

Get you HSE. An error from a dive instructor and you’re all over the shop like a rash. A phone call from a chamber concerned about another one treating sports injury badly with oxygen and “it’s the responsibility for the local council”. Do you pick and choose your ‘responsibilities’ related to the amount of tax payer funded miles you can clock in your 1986 Mondeos. I am shocked how little is done to really prevent problems, and how much to those who can’t afford £400 an hour lawyers. And then you come to the diveshows with your bad stand and beards. I bet the only punters you get coming to you are asking the way to the hog roast area.

Get with the programme. Make BSAC instructors get a medical, stop bogus chambers treating in the back of a garage and give the tax payer value for money.

We have to pay your pensions.

AQUARIUMS

I love the way you are all so ‘eco-friendly’.
All about the wonders of the ocean; how to keep it that way; and a kids area with a Costa franchise.

So... where did you get the clown fish from? You didn’t breed them did you? Nor the tiny pufferfish and piranhas. And that rather bored black tip in the biggest tank. You can fool all of the people all of the time when you are an aquarium. Especially when you bang on a twenty quid entrance fee.

Add a whale shark and you are well ‘green’. At least it’s one less finned that becomes the soup they serve in the Chinese above you.

Aquariums, you have to tell it like it is. You are not there to preserve the fish, you’re there to make the fat bloke with the sealskin coat and black Merc enough wedge to keep his Russian ex-wife in baubles.

The day the kiddies stop coming is the day you flush all the little ones down the toilet and hawk the big ones to a restaurant.

It ain’t about the ecology, stupid.

ITALIAN DIVERS

It IS essential to look prettier than your surroundings.

So well done you lot. The missus now wants me to lose three stone, get a six pack and wear Armani. I was fine in my Millets combats and trainers ‘til I shared a dive boat with you.

Next year I am diving in America. At least I will look leaner and trendier compared to that lot. Not sure about my teeth though.

WEST COUNTRY BOAT SKIPPERS

Alright. That’s enough. Can you please talk in an accent that everyone understands. Not just those befuddled with cider. Sorry, zoiderr.

There must be some maritime law that dictates “ease of communication between vessels”. It doesn’t help when an American warship comes across your bows and it can’t figure out what you are saying on the radio. Likewise a London punter asking where the loo is.

‘Durrrindersturrn’ = ‘In the back, Sir, follow your nose’.

Thank God for semaphore.

‘SANCTUM’, THE MOVIE

Just cancelled my cave diving course in Mexico. Didn’t realise just how sodding dangerous it all is. And how much you rely on others, who always seem to cock it up. So, thanks once again executive producer James Cameron. Your films have now serially put me off – saving others on far off planets; being a commercial diver; cruises; blue.

And now cave diving.
I’ll just stick with bomb disposal.
At least your ex made that seem safe.

TINY PUFFERFISH

I guess it’s your fault really. If you weren’t so cute you wouldn’t be endangered (see above.)

Go on, take a leaf out of the frogfish’s book of life. Get ugly. Cross breed with a sea cucumber and you won’t end up in a tank to keep children happy when they’re getting a hair cut. Or in a shitty tenement block.

flat owned by a geek who buys specialist magazines about you.

DIVE MAGAZINE ‘KIT REVIEWS’

Fantastic. The first page I turn to in mine. So many fins and so much knives ‘n’ neoprene. All rated fairly and objectively with us, the consumer’s interest in mind.

But it does help if you have actually tried the stuff, kit-reviewer.

We don’t like the dive hood being pulled over our eyes.

‘PUFFERFISH ENTHUSIAST’ MAGAZINE

The last issue was CRAP. I am furious. You didn’t publish my pictures of Little Bernie in his new castle.

There weren’t enough Readers’ Fish stories. Your free aquarium tickets were bogus as it had closed down near me.

What’s wrong with the world? I blame various politicians. And of course the BBC.

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