Live Like Jay!
I always firmly believed that anyone who didn't like the ''super-hero'' (though really ''fantasy reality character'' would be a far better term to categorize them all) known as ''Aquaman'' to the masses - well, via their simple dislike of such a character, they simply proved to lack imagination, vision, refinement, perception, intuitiveness - depth, without making any pun whatsoever here...
In one word, the better word for it all: soul.
For only a borderline soulless creature fails to see the spirituality of the sea; and such characters truly embody that - the ocean, in all of its mystery and fascination it can exert upon us all. Everyone of us wishes to be at the beach, but only a few are truly mesmerized by the rhythm of the waves, the lure of the tides, the great mystery that is the sea. Only those ''souls of the sea'' can get what I'm alluding at; for they are, verily, soulmates of the ocean and, thus, its sons and daughters...
The recently deceased Paul Walker was another such soul of the sea, to a lesser degree, however much greater than the newly-trained to surf Gerard Butler may be; both of them would belong to a sub-category just above that to which the above-mentioned 'Sea King' character and all others like him are constrained - and that, in and by itself, is not exactly praise, by any stretch of the imagination.
In sharp contrast, one of the most recent record-holding freedivers, the late Patrick Musimu, unquestionably was another one of those true blue souls ''of the sea''... So were Mark Foo, Bob Simmons and Eddie Aikau, to name but three. Many others, perhaps most notably breath-holding record holder Stig Severinsen, retired queen of freediving Tanya Streeter and/or Jacques-Yves Cousteau or Vasco Da Gama himself, have been far more fortunate in their indulgence of this love for the sea that consumes them; yet, none of these are a real-life counterpart to the make-believe Aquaman, Marine Man, Captain Nauticus, Undersea Knight, Sea Ghost, Mera, Marella The Aquawoman, Marina The Aquagirl, Seadragon, Sub-Mariner or Amphibion. They are nonetheless the closest to an Odysseus, Ulysses, Aegir, Poseidon or Neptune history will ever get to see. Each adventure out to sea could be their last; and they accept that risk and will continue getting out there, always. Because in the sea is also their soul - and, no; not everyone can fully get that.
One who always saw the sea for all that it is, was Jay. He took to surfing as if he was born in the waves - and, in a sense, he was, right off the coast of Santa Cruz, where everyone fondly remembers him to this day, and always will. Now there's an example of someone who took to the waves due to his fascination with it: he would count them, as a child! The closest of all, arguably, to being ''king of the sea'' out of all the notables mentioned and not mentioned here; Jay was... and is... in a class all of his own, on top of that tidal wave. He garnered nationwide attention for his first few exploits: riding that huge wave, surviving the wipe out, continuing on a promising career of soul surfing and free diving, as Jay's reputation grew throughout the world, which brought him to the Maldives in 2001...
We skipped the 10th anniversary (leaving to others, more suited, to cover that) - but, since, roughly two years later, both a book and a film came out on Jay - we take this opportunity of the unlikelier-to-be commemorated (in such a grand way, at any rate) anniversary of his untimely passing (the 13th) to salute, as we did back in 2001 (...) this greatest of soul surfers... of soul searchers... of souls.
What all sea adventurers should be: so much more than a make-believe one. Jay's story deserved to be retold and it was in a magnificent way, in the recent film we salute, also, below...
Greg Holden, courtesy of Relativity Music
If you haven't seen ''Chasing Mavericks'' yet
- please do so today.
You will love it
-and the sea!
You will see!
You will come to understand
why you, too, should...
Live Like Jay!