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July 2007    Download the Entire Issue (PDF) Available to the Public Vol. 33, No. 7   RSS Feed for Undercurrent Issues
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Diving Fantasy Versus Reality

from the July, 2007 issue of Undercurrent   Subscribe Now

While flipping through an issue of Men’s Style Australia, writer Jo-Anne Klocke came across an ad for dive equipment showing a young, virile guy with a six-pack of abs wearing full dive gear while gallantly protecting a young, partially-clad blonde. “I’m wondering if the advertising gurus who think up these ads are divers because every time I go diving, I seem to only spy older, dolphin-shaped divers (just like me), not those hunky, spunky divers portrayed in the magazines. Or is it because I’m going to the wrong dive sites and clubs?”

However, she did give kudos to an ad in Dive Log Australasia, the magazine that publishes her column “Scuba Diving and the Single Female.” It was from another dive equipment supplier showing its female “Diver of the Month.” But it was a real diver in all her salt-encrusted glory. “Yes, she was a young, blonde female but she is a genuine, realistically portrayed diver. I hope that others in the dive industry follow that example.”

But the reality bite is understanding that we need fantasy in our lives. It drives us to desire things, to spend money. If it were portrayed ‘as is,’ would we want to own it? Klocke admits that while perusing dive magazines and Web sites to pick out a new dry suit, she selected one because of how way the model looked wearing it. “The dry suit manufacturers make the suits models wear skintight-like wetsuits, but the one you receive is made baggy to fit the thermals underneath, so it fits more like a second skin for the Michelin man. Would I have bought this model of dry suit if they had portrayed it realistically? The answer: ‘No.’”

We all need fantasies, otherwise life would be depressing. But let’s remember what Keats wrote: “Truth is beauty, beauty is truth.” It’s hard to measure up to the media’s fantasy of the ideal diver with the hot, 20-something body, but, as Klocke writes, “once we see past the outside wrapping, we discover true beauty.”

From the article “Reality Bites” by Jo-Anne Klocke, published in the March 2007 issue of Dive Log Australasia.

Look what the marketing of fins has come to

Look what the marketing of fins has come to

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