When I was a teenager, I loved SCUBA diving. I went twice and was, at the time, sold on the idea of being a marine biologist.

Very quickly, that desire died. Why? Because when I went diving, it was in beautiful, crystal-clear water off Hawai’i and México. Gorgeous. It was so clear, I could see the school of white tip reef sharks below me and it didn’t bother me one iota. If death was coming for me, I knew when and from where.

But anyone who has visited beaches and other bodies of water around the world knows that these crystal-clear bodies of water are the minority and not the majority and it’s the murky waters I cannot stand. I was snorkeling with manatees in Florida — widely regarded as the gentlest animals in the world — and, even though it was a protected preserve, the fact I couldn’t see two inches under the surface of the water terrified me to no end. I hated every second I was there.

Add to this event a time I was at one of the shorelines in Florida with my family and my dad, who was much closer to the beach at the time, suddenly went bolt upright like Roy Scheider in Jaws and we all looked where he was pointing and saw two fins. We didn’t ask questions. We waded like hell out of there. We discovered shortly after that they were two bottlenose dolphins but I wasn’t going to stay out there and find that out in the moment.

And then there’s this

Funny? Yes. When you’re not the one who discovers it in there unwittingly. Otherwise, hell to the no!

I rarely venture into such watery situations anymore as a result of this fear and the potential for these sorts of shenanigans. I don’t like oceans. I don’t like rivers. I don’t like lakes. Except from the shore.

I hope y’all understand.


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Kevin Spencer

When I was younger I did a lot of snorkeling in southern Spain. Always fancied an upgrade to Scuba diving and do it properly like grown ups do. To this day I've never been but it's on my bucket list.


Snorkeling held little appeal to me when I was younger because it limited me from going too deep. If I’m in the water, I want to be *in the water*, yanno?

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