Department of Corrections: Diana Nyad on People are Talking, 1989

A few weeks ago, Laura Dean, a musician who created a program called “Heart And Place: Music Of The Westward Expansion,” emailed me to ask how many violins I thought the Lewis and Clark Expedition carried: one or two? In my opinion, I told Dean, they carried one.

Let me back up for a moment. I play the violin, and I used to present a show about one of the fiddlers with Lewis and Clark. I learned in 1997 that the expedition included two fiddling crew members: Pierre Cruzatte and George Gibson. I also learned that Cruzatte, the expedition’s half-French, half-Omaha boatman, is best-known for accidentally shooting Captain Lewis in his rear-end. Cruzatte’s story was ripe for the telling.

Image courtesy of Michael from McKinley Elementary, Santa Monica, circa 2001.

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Chasing The Swimmer, part 2: Key West ♡s Diana Nyad

Before Diana jumped in the water off Havana, she knew exactly where she would land: A Key West beach perfect for a statue. The Swimmer tells all.

part 1 – part 2 – part 3

All quotes come from the Audible version of The Swimmer: The Diana Nyad Story unless otherwise indicated.

What’s Left?

Diana Nyad (presumably) making some adjustments. Via CNN/

Nyad’s almost through the second night of her Cuba swim, but she’s in trouble. A few hours ago, she waited out a storm, treading water for about an hour and a half. The sea has stopped churning, but her stomach hasn’t. She retches again. Bits of vomit stick inside her jellyfish mask.

At about 5 a.m., John Bartlett—captain of Nyad’s escort boat, Voyager—declares that Diana’s “running on fumes.”
Continue reading “Chasing The Swimmer, part 2: Key West ♡s Diana Nyad”