Daniel, Perhaps it’s just me but while I agree with the tenor of your post, I have difficulty finding what Nyad did what was so egregious in your opinion. I scanned the article and nothing major stood out. It’s one thing to claim you swam the English Channel but didn’t but she did. I think- and again, I don’t have the time at the moment to scour this article for every tiny detail- there are people who fudge the truth a little. In fact that is something we have all done to a certain degree, Daniel, and I would hardly find that a major crime. To wit, Lance Armstrong is a baldface liar, cheat, arrogant piece of backstabbing shit, not that I feel strongly about it, and it’s not that he’s male and she’s female. I was a huge fan of his until the truth came out. Just as I have been huge fans other big names until a really ugly dishonesty came out. I used to be a huge Peyton Manning fan until he golfed with Trump. That did it for me. We are who we associate with, including that racist POS who owns Papa John’s. That Nyad has too many people who have witnessed her swims underscores what she’s done. If there are small bits and pieces that people cling to because for whatever reason it soothes a deep insecurity, and this goes for every single one of us, I hardly find that a punishable offense. To be fair, though, as I said I didn’t study the article. However, with all athletes, and I think particularly those who have gone on to achieve extraordinary things, there are always going to be people who invest an inordinate amount of time trying to tear them down for even the smallest peccadilloes. Those, well, I’m not terribly concerned about, because it’s something we all do. Until none of us lies, cheats, steals, lies on our resume, undermines someone we care about, breaks a trust, we aren’t in much of a position to attack or criticize. Armstrong went WAY beyond that. So have others, like Ray Rice, for example.

If this: “We can now prove, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that Diana Nyad lied about being in every book of aptonyms.” constitutes a high crime in your opinion, so be it. It doesn’t for me. Lots of people make broad statements that can be a little wanting. I respect Nyad for her swimming accomplishments that she did without the help of performance-enhancing drugs. Should it come to light that she used them, then she gets knocked off her pedestal. She may very well have believed she was in every book but didn’t actually know. For my dime, that’s not a criminal offense. Besides, for what it’s worth, I think we all have a great deal of work to do on ourselves rather than spend time finding tiny details with which to impugn other’s characters. It almost always is an indication that we’re dealing with that same internal issue ourselves. It’s far harder to look at that than to attack others. Besides, knowing Nyad’s history of sexual abuses from a trusted swimming coach, I know precisely how that feels, how that damages our self esteem, and even she admits that not a day goes by that she doesn’t think about it. Given that-and given that I have been through much the same thing, I understand what it’s like to try to bolster yourself after that kind of damage. No matter how good you are, how many medals, how many accomplishments, inside you still feel like a piece of shit. Unless you’ve been down that road, and you may have for all I know, it’s hard to have empathy. I have, and I do.

And kindly, this doesn’t mean the article is wrong. I just don’t exactly see it as earth-shattering. And I also find sites like this that seek to demean, demoralize and attack people outright disgusting. We all have better things to do with our time and our lives. If there is someone, say, like the current President, who lies ALL the time about EVERYTHING, and his actions have a significant impact on our lives as well as world stability, people’s business health and a very broad range of other areas, that’s another issue entirely. But Nyad and those like her? Waste of time. But then, that’s just my take. I appreciate your input and the opportunity to respond.

Horizon Huntress, prize-winning author, adventure traveler, boundary-pusher, wilder, veteran, aging vibrantly. I own my sh*t. Let’s play!

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