Thursday, January 22, 2009

Swimming with shadows

One of my heroes is Dave Martin, the 66-year-old triathlete who was killed by a great white shark off the coast of San Diego last year. It's not so much the circumstances of his death. It's that he raised children so fearless they went surfing in the same waters the very next day.

I have had to think a lot about bravery recently. About whether it is braver to accept death or to fight it. About growing up deeply different. About ambiguous ends rendered in sharp focus. I haven't arrived anywhere especially profound. I just imagine Kevin Martin paddling out into the Pacific, unable to ignore the swimming shadows below, but completely able to accept them.

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