Reading Material

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Reading Material

Postby kathy » August 27th, 2015, 11:49 am

I love to read (all of your awesome reports!) and enjoy finding articles written about freediving and hunting.
Here's 2 interesting articles from a recent edition of 'The Lucky Peach'

I thought both were well written. I included a few of my favorite quotes from each.

1. An interview with female shellfish divers on Jeju Island in Korea.
http://luckypeach.com/jeju-island-and-t ... yo-divers/

What scares you?

MYO: There are big whales. I’m scared of that, and the sky. The sky sometimes opens up with rain, thunder, and lightning. I’m so scared of the lightning because we wear weights which I think attract the electricity. And sometimes when you’re swimming outside there are abandoned clothes. The clothes dance in the water and it startles me whenever I see them. It’s so scary.

Why are there clothes?

MYO: People throw them away, or fishermen throw them off in a hurry, or it’s garbage from the shore, carried out by the currents. When you go in the water there are spirits, eels, and clothes. They make you jump.



2. Abalone Song by Tienlon Ho, written this August about well, about abalone.
http://luckypeach.com/abalone-song/

"When threatened, the abalone pulls its armor down tight and grips the sand with its muscular foot. Their shells, which form an asymmetrical spiral, are an engineering marvel, with terraces of tiny hexagonal calcium-carbonate tiles that slide and bend to distribute pressure in a way that maximizes the absolute mathematical limits of their strength and gives them a beautiful iridescence."

"In Japan, an entire profession—the women divers known as ama—arose out of the need to harvest abalone suitable for gifting to the gods. Abalone is a synonym for class."
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Re: Reading Material

Postby Steve G » August 27th, 2015, 12:18 pm

Cool stuff. Thanks for posting those up. I will make time to read them.
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Re: Reading Material

Postby kathy » October 1st, 2015, 12:12 pm

Here's some more good stuff for those who love reading about or exploring for treasure.

15 feet of water, 1000 feet off the beach. KEEP YOUR EYES PEELED, PEOPLE...just sayin'....

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2015 ... 11454384=1

"The day started out like any other, Schmitt says. But around 9 or 9:30 in the morning, a gold coin popped out of the sand he was clearing on the seafloor. The dive team started to shift more sand, and ended up recovering the treasure. "It was absolutely unreal," says Schmitt. He called Brent Brisben, co-founder of 1715 Fleet-Queens Jewels to check out their discovery. "I was blown away," Brisben says. "I was literally shaking.""
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Re: Reading Material

Postby dam » October 2nd, 2015, 9:03 am

The quip about clothes acting like spirits dancing underwater is exactly how I interpret it every time I see plastic bags on the reef. Glad to know I'm not the only pansy one out there :happysad:. The story from Jack London of young boys diving for coins always appeals to me as well. I often wondered what if would be like to dive for them myself. It's no wonder we're drawn to this sport. It's so cool!
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Re: Reading Material

Postby Tom » October 15th, 2015, 7:35 pm

carlos eyles has written some very good books I think you guys would enjoy. I can vouch for last of the blue water hunters, secret seas, and the blue edge. all worth reading.
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Re: Reading Material

Postby byronq » October 17th, 2015, 5:57 am

Paul Zylstra (flattie) gave me a great list of reads. If you prompt him, you can probably find more.

1). Two Years Before the Mast, Richard Henry Dana (yeah, of Dana Point origin). If you want to learn about the early trade in California, the winds, etc. Should be mandatory for anyone owning a boat out here.

2). Blue Water Gold Rush. California urchin diving, from the 70s on.

3). Of course, In the Heart of the Sea. The story of the Essex. I'm so stoked on the movie coming out, when I've told friends the story, no one believes me. The origin of Moby Dick, it was incredible how early sailors lived at the time, and what the code of survival was. Not for the faint of heart, you'll probably never eat marrow with your steak after reading this one!!! :eek:
Long Beach Neptunes
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Re: Reading Material

Postby kathy » October 19th, 2015, 12:15 pm

Awesome! Let's keep this list going with quality stuff. Just devoured this on vacation:

Pirate Hunters, by Robert Kurson
http://californiadiver.com/robert-cursons-pirate-hunters-book-now-available-0617/
if you like diving, pirates, history, treasure hunting, and colorful characters, this is a book for you.


His other book, Shadow Divers, is epic as well. The true story of discovery of an unidentified Nazi sub off the coast of new Jersey.
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USN Diving Manual, 1963

Postby kathy » January 10th, 2016, 1:44 pm

My dad sent me his old USN diving manual (he was in the Army, not the Navy FYI) - it's disintegrating after 40-odd years of exposure Florida humidity and salt air. I hope you enjoy these!

"For sale by the Superintendent of Documents"



"Written records provide accounts of some very ancient diving exploits. Most of these were connected with naval warfare. For example Xerxes is said to have used combat divers; and over 400 years before Christ, Herodotus told the story of Scyllis, a famous greek diver who was employed by Xerxes to recover treasure from sunken Persian ships. When the job was done, the conqueror decided to detain Scyllis but the diver went over the side during a storm, threw the whole fleet into confusion by cutting the anchor cables, and then completed his escape by swimming 9 miles to Artemisium."


"In a famous treatise on warfare written about 375 A.D., Vegetius described diving hoods equipped with air pipes."



"Because light behaves a little differently in water, a diver may find that his eyes deceive him. Straight lines sometimes appear bent, and objects appear larger and closer than they actually are. If the water is muddy, the diver may see poorly or not at all. Even if it is relatively clear, natural shadows may be lacking, and colors will be changed."


"To some extent, experience and willpower influence the amount of respiratory "drive" a man can tolerate before breaking. In addition, individuals differ in the sensitivity of their control mechanisms, so one man will not have as strong a desire to breathe as another even though his oxygen and carbon dioxide tensions have reached the same level. Both of these factors help explain why one man has greater breath-holding ability than another. The improvement in breath-holding ability which occurs with practice is probably due mainly to changes in the "willpower' factor, but there is some evidence that sensitivity of the controls may be reduced over a long period of frequent skindiving."


"Diver's Underwear May Suffice"


We found this jammed in the middle. Looks like maybe some one was not paying attention in class??


"The diver's underwear...is made of 100% pure wool and provides, together with the diving dress, protection against the cold water...At least one set of underclothing should be worn to prevent the body from being chafed or bruised from the diving dress...When not in use, the woolens should be stowed in larvicide, such as napthalene, and kept tightly wrapped in paper."




"PSYCHOLOGICAL REQUIREMENTS: The scuba diver is master of his own destiny. He must be self-reliant. He is alone except for his buddy...The scuba diver must be steady nerved. He has to work calmly in darkness and isolation, even in the presence of known hazards. Yet, he must have normal fear reactions and a healthy respect for danger."
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Re: Reading Material

Postby John Hughes » January 12th, 2016, 6:41 pm

Those are great shots from your dads manual Kathy, thanks for sharing them. I've read most of the books mentioned here and loved them. Keep the suggestions coming. I'm going to have to check out that Pirate book.
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echinoblog

Postby kathy » January 31st, 2016, 12:35 pm

This is one of my favorite online sites, this guy Christopher Mah writes about echinoderms of all kinds, but he pulls in history, pop culture (!!!), science fiction and photography in some really fun ways. If you're a fan of echinoderms or just unusual sea stuff in general, check out his page.

http://echinoblog.blogspot.com/

Here is a great and fun example of his style of writing.
http://echinoblog.blogspot.com/2015/10/ ... sters.html

I even wrote to him once after we found a really crazy looking sea biscuit near Key West. Sent him some photos and he sent back a great note about what exactly it was and why it looked so different from the other tests I was used to seeing. It was an "irregular" sea urchin closely related to sand dollars called Brissus unicolor. They live in the sand and burrow their way through the sediment. Unlike most "regular" urchins, their bodies are modified into a front and and a rear so that they can more easily plow through the sand. Here's a page he wrote about irregular sea urchins.

http://echinoblog.blogspot.com/2014/06/ ... gular.html


enjoy! high and dry here in NorCal, :'( Kathy
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Re: echinoblog

Postby kathy » January 31st, 2016, 12:38 pm

One more of his fun posts about uni:

http://echinoblog.blogspot.com/2008/09/ ... es-so.html
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Re: Reading Material

Postby Ben Weston » February 8th, 2016, 8:11 pm

The Fisherman's Son by Michael Koepf. Published in the late 90's. Note this is not the same as the book/movie of the same title that was recently publicized by Patagonia and others. Check it out!

http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/7300 ... rman_s_Son
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Nazi gold??

Postby kathy » February 9th, 2016, 12:52 pm

Again a reminder that sometimes the best things are found in shallow water:


Gold bar found by teenage girl in German Lake


"A 16-year-old holidaymaker has found a 500g (1lb) gold bar worth €16,000 (£11,500) while swimming in a lake in Germany, police say.
The teenager discovered the precious metal at a depth of about 2m (6.5ft) near the shore of Bavaria's Koenigssee lake on Friday."


and here's where the screenplay should start:

"It's still not clear how the bar ended up in the lake."



http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-33880350
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Re: Reading Material

Postby John Hughes » February 11th, 2016, 6:36 am

I just finished Two Years Before the Mast. Interesting read about early CA and the life of early sailers. A little slow but it was neat reading about all the So Cal cities when there was nothing here. It was also funny reading about those guys hating the hill here in Pedro as much as we do except they were humping hides and not fish :)
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Re: Reading Material

Postby kathy » June 16th, 2016, 10:25 am

Another classic from the Florida bookshelf:
Shallow Water Diving For Pleasure and Profit, by Hilbert Schenck Jr. and Henry Kendall

There's a beautiful engraving on the jacket.

As I poked around to find more info about this book, I found a cool website from Australia:
http://classicdivebooks.customer.netspa ... index.html

I am in awe as I read these old books, of the innovation and invention and experimentation taking place. These guys back then were pioneering their equipment, and pioneering diving techniques. While the pictures and style of writing are often humorous, as are some of the things they came up with, their excitement, spirit and determination are timeless.

"For a few dollars, the novice can assemble a safe, dependable outfit which opens to him a new and fascinating world, the realm of the undersea."


"The cardinal rule in building the container for the head is: Keep it small...While it may be possible to work up a headpiece from flat stock, a much easier solution is to procure some ready-shaped object and adapt it for the job. A few suggestions are: large surplus low pressure oxygen bottle, ten gallon milk can, a suitably sized hot water tank."


"Diving outfits of this type played an exciting part in World War II and were used by the Italian Naval Forces in their daring attacks against British Fleet Units in the Mediterranean. In these actions, the Italians rode large torpedoes, dressed in suits and recirculating apparatus. The British used similar tactics with equal brilliance against German capital ships in the Norway fjords."


"This world of water has colors of unearthly brilliance and hue, and citizens of unimagined shape and habits. It is an arena of conflict and ferocity, a cloister of solitude and loneliness."
:eek: DOES any one else feel like that description also works for San Francisco... :D


"It is possible in low visibility to swim underwater six or eight feel above the bottom, but this tends to drive the fish ahead and frighten everything off. Better results are had by walking on the bottom. If fish are plentiful, curious, or unsophisticated, good results are possible by just walking around with a six or eight foot spear. When the target is selected, try and work it into a corner, against some rocks. A good, hard jab then finishes the job."


"Reading too many of the adventure books by the boys who make their living telling about the man-eating Kraken at the mouth of the Orinoco can have as bad an effect as being attacked by a twenty foot hammerhead on your first dive. To hear some of them tell it, the diver must fight every shark, devil fish, octopus, moray, etc., he sees. Strangely enough, while he supposedly non-fiction adventure writers drag on for pages about the deadly horror of innumerable undersea monsters, they seldom mention the truly great enemy, relentless, deadly, and capable of doing more hideous damage to a human being than any sea monster created, the sea itself."


"Painting Underwater: If the reader decides to try his hand at reproducing the sights of the undersea in a little more personal way than snapping pictures, he might try some underwater painting. Needless to say, water colors tend to be a little runny, thirty feet down, but oil paints can be used right out of the tube on regular canvas. The only difficulty that might be experienced is with fish that become attracted to the artist's palette by the taste of some of the oil pigments. Lead 'flashing', thin lead sheets used in plumbing work, can be used to weight down a wooden easel and anything else with a tendency to float. Don't let go of any brushes or they may fall up to the surface."
:greetings-clappingorange: :eek: :bow-blue: WOW



cheers! Remember to keep your head containers small!!
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Re: Reading Material

Postby kathy » December 7th, 2017, 9:18 am

Found this in August 2010 National Geographic - gotta love the old Nat Geos!

"Bahamas Blue Holes: Dive Into Beauty Danger and Discovery"
(comes with a rad pull-out poster)

An incredible article about deep inland "blue holes" found in the Bahamas Islands, and about the cave divers, archaeologists, and historians who explore them. Here's the part that intrigued me that I wanted to share [my edits are in brackets]:

'In 1991 Rob Palmer [a cave-diving pioneer] and his team discovered and excavated 17 sets of Lucayan remains from a cave on Andros called Sanctuary[...] On the 2009 expedition, Michael Pateman, an archaeologist and cave diver with the National Museum of the Bahamas, recovered the remains of two more Lucayans. He will carbon-date and study the bones[...] seeking information about the age, sex, stature, diet, and life stresses of these individuals as well as how they died.

"One of the things we know about the Lucayans is that they were tremendous divers," Pateman tells me. "They were sought out by the Spaniards to dive for pearls. And we've found evidence of deep diving on some of the skulls - over time, in response to the pressure, bone builds up around the ears."'

Wha? Has anyone had their skull checked to see if they're building up bone around their ears?! This is fascinating and the first I'd heard of it. I know about Surfer's Ear, where the ear canal bone starts to grow shut as a response to the cold. Is there a "Diver's Skull" phenomena?? OR are we all just slightly thick-headed to begin with, and that's what compels us to leave the surface of the earth and dive under the water....


This is a photo from the article, by Wes Skiles, of Dean's Blue Hole - Earth's deepest known underwater cave.
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