The Old Man and the (F'n) Sea

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   I’m having second thoughts about going to the beach tomorrow: I have a rather severe case of thalassophobia (fear of the sea).  A vast expanse of crystal-blue water can aggravate my mild psychosis: I automatically think of drowning.  The mere sight of a big wave – that’s not on TV – not only makes me nauseous, but makes me think about tsunamis.

   Outside of my fear, I have a rather low opinion of the sea in general.  It’s so serene, so boring, so flat, and so blue.  Many writers – particularly Ernest Hemingway and Joseph Conrad – have tried to capture the essence of the sea in their novels.  “Lord Jim” was a particularly harrowing experience for me: not for the conflicted personality of Jim, but for how Conrad described the sea.  So vivid, so moving, so… pardon me while I hurl.

   I’m more of a mountain man: the rugged mountains give you a sense of towering power over those who live down below.  The jagged, forested edges that frame both sunrise and sunset forces in you the sound and the fury of being so close to heaven.  The sea, on the other hand, forces in you the sound and the fury of being close to Hell itself.  Ah, my first ride in a ferry boat…

   While it’s a distant possibility that I’ll drown, I hope I’m alive by Friday to post pictures of how I survived the deathtrap that is the open sea.

   Catch you on the flipside.

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