Blog Archives

Carolina Beaches, Seeing Lots of Great White Sharks, Can’t Afford a Hurricane

All it would take is for the theme song from ‘Jaws’ to pop in my head while swimming in the ocean for a split second and I’d haul my you-know-what back to shore like I was Michael Phelps in the Olympics.

And if I lived in the Carolinas right now, I’d probably just chill on the beach with a Corona and lime, according to a recent CBS This Morning report.

Terrifying up close yet majestic at a distance, the Great White Shark is one of nature’s most feared and admired predators. Look no further than the national fandom surrounding the Discovery Channel’s annual television installment of ‘Shark Week.’

And what’s wild about the news story above is that when a shark is brought onto a boat without water to move around, it provides the scientists and viewers remarkable insight up close and personal with a fish we’d never hope to be in open water with during our lifetime. Looking at a living and breathing shark at a close distance is a paralyzing feeling, even through a video clip.

Just an incredible project by Ocearch.

Random Thought: What is a shark thinking when it’s brought onto a boat by people, like those on the Ocearch team.

Anyways, I recall watching a documentary about the 1975 summer blockbuster ‘Jaws’ in which director Steven Spielberg explains why he won’t go swimming in the ocean as he’s standing with Richard Dreyfuss (Matt Hooper) on the edge of a beach.

“They know I made this movie.”

And I’d like to think Mr. Spielberg has saved countless lives because he made his summer blockbuster more than four decades ago.

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13 Minutes in the Abyss

Incredible. Terrifying. Breathtaking.

Allow yourself to escape for just 13 minutes to watch freediver Guillaume Néry escape underwater into parts of various oceans most of us consider to be unknown territory in his short film ‘One Breath Around the World.’ If for nothing else, witness what fearful serenity looks like in this brand new project in concert with National Geographic that, once again, affirms its reputation of visually capturing the limits of what’s possible in new and daring ways.

In some circles, the belief is that perception can be more real than reality. A valid point. Does ‘One Breath Around the World’ challenge that notion?

If Guillaume Néry’s adventurous freediving into the various depths of the world’s oceans doesn’t get your heart racing with adrenaline and imagination for how you can apply his underwater explorations to your life, then I don’t know what will.

One thing I do know is that Mr. Néry may soon be receiving an offer to join Jason Momoa in the ‘Aquaman’ sequel.

Toto’s “Africa” Sun Set Is a Timeless Encore

Weezer’s cover is great, but Namibian-German multimedia artist Max Siedentopf took it to an entirely new level.

More on him in a minute.

Toto’s 1982 smash hit “Africa” continues to reign supreme well into the second decade of the 21st century as a defining, shining example of ’80s music nostalgia. How can someone not like this song? It’s relaxing yet an undeniably powerful anthem for many things, depending on the listener/car or shower singer. One listen to the popular song and it’s easy to discern why we–and by “we” I mean the world–still love this song from back in the pre-Internet era.

So why should the song ever stop playing?

Here’s where the aforementioned multimedia artist Max Siedentopf comes into play.

You’ll see what I did there in another minute.

Max Siedentopf–a fellow “Africa” and Toto fan–visualized the ultimate tribute to this glorious song. In an undisclosed part of the Namib Desert, which is located in southern Africa (the continent, not the song), Mr. Siedentopf installed an art installation of sorts. Similar to the genius simplicity of Randy’s Donuts in Los Angeles, there are six normal looking desktop speakers placed on six white boxes. In the middle is a taller white box with a digital music player that is connected to all six speakers via wires (like the ’80s).

The genius part of multimedia artist Max Siedentopf–aside from the clever idea–is that it’s all powered by solar energy with extreme weather elements in place for technology in a relentlessly sunny desert. So that means, you’ve got that right, Toto’s “Africa” will supposedly play on repeat in this mysterious location in Africa FOREVER.

This is Toto’s “Africa” in 2019:

Max Siedentopf said that this spectacular tribute to Toto is located where “…only the most loyal of Toto fans can find.”

This is damn near brilliant. It’s creatively fitting (except for the Kilimanjaro, Serengeti, and rain parts) with literal staying power for generations and hopefully lifetimes. The grand mystery as to where it’s located, serving as a veritable treasure hunt, mostly makes up for these ommissions.

If you think about it, this tribute to Toto’s “Africa” is a living time capsule. And if you think more about it, this mysteriously placed speaker system proves the power of music as the soundtrack to our lives and our surroundings sans introverted cocooning via technology.

Perhaps part of the purpose of this art installation is asking us to take off our headphones–or introverted nature–and engage with the world again in a more openly joyful, extroverted way like 1980s-something?

Hey, we’ve seen stranger things these days inspired by the 1980s.

P.S. 

This is Toto’s “Africa” music video from 1982. 

And this is Toto’s “Africa” performed by Weezer (with a special guest) in 2018. 

Are you tired of listening to Toto’s “Africa”? Of course not! Thank you for this all-time musical masterpiece, Toto. 

Go…Slow

This is one of those blog posts in which a picture video says a thousand words.

And a few skipped heartbeats.

Watching a GoPro’s crystal-clear footage of Ocean Ramsey and a great white shark sailing off into the deep blue sea is the perfect visual for confronting one’s fear with courage and (necessarily careful) precision.

A gigantic, terrifying fear with jaws.