What you see at 1:39 will do your head in.....
I found my jaw dropping and my eye's widening when I watched this! Freaking insane. OJ is my hero!! Sure don't know anyone else with balls enough to paddle right over a bunch of massive tiger sharks on a surfboard and have em swim up and smell your flipping toes.
OJ's one of the Bomb surf mags team of regular contributors, like yours truly. She's a south coast surfer gal who's made it her mission to dispel the myths around sharks - and in this Nat Geo program she's putting her money RIGHT where her mouth is!
I'd hoped to include some of the findings from her program in the article I've just written on Great Whites for the Bomb (should be landing in your post boxes this week), but OJ was bound by confidentiality agreements so she wasn't allowed to talk to me about it until the Nat Geo episode aired...which was after my deadline. Drat.
Researching the article was quite an experience. Immersing yourself in all things Great White for the better part of 2 months really did my head in for a bit. I'd never given it a second thought to go surf Millers by myself, and now all of a sudden I was kakking off, cos all I could think about was sharks.
Which was really ironic....cos all the scientific articles were pretty consistent in saying that we most definitely aren't on the menu. Guess it was just having it at conscious level all the time cos I was reading about it was playing tricks on my mind.
I'm not going to let too much out the bag til you get your mags and read my article, but suffice to say when I started I was totally of the belief that shark cage diving was resulting in an increase in shark attacks. But when you start digging into the facts, not the emotions, things aren't quite what they seem.
Sharks are by no means man-eating monsters like JAWS would have us believe. But then the media love getting their hands on anything like that and blowing it out of proportion - "If it bleeds, it leads" is the saying, meaning if it's gory you stick it on your front page as the lead story, and you sell more papers. Sound familiar!? Specially when there ain't a helluva lot else going on in our sleep lil dorp....
Knowledge is power as the saying goes. I'm sure this is true once that knowledge has had time to seep in and settle down and become less emotional. The outcome of all my research was coming to an understanding that we aren't on the menu, and getting bitten is all about being in the wrong place at the wrong time and being shit outta luck basically.
The plan is just to try avoid those wrong place/wrong time scenario's....as they're the one's stacking the odds against you as far as becoming a statistic goes. We've all heard the oft-touted stats that you have more chance of dying in a car crash on the way to the beach than being bitten by a shark. True.
But personally I'd prefer neither option thanks!
Check out OJ's Nat Geo episode below - broken down below into short segments. Starts up with an overall intro - and then deals with the various theories behind what attracts sharks to us....colour, bling and sound.
Bet you a hundred bucks you'll kak yourself next time you get in the water! But don't worry.....the feeling goes away eventually. I'm back to normal now....that Jaws theme music has disappeared into the background again!
The Colour Test
The Bling Test
The Splash Test