Another Day, Another Interview: TEAM NEVER QUIT

Two former US Navy SEALs interview Diana and discover, among other things, that she grew up in Paris and that she has set her sights on Broadway.

I’ve got a backlog of Nyad interviews to examine. Starting with this one, I’m going to try to move through them quickly, listing the lies while commenting only briefly.

Why bother looking for more of Nyad’s deceptions after listing so many already? The higher the pile of fabrications, the more evidence that Diana Nyad is a compulsive liar and a fraud. And maybe, at some point, the pile will get so high that it will be impossible to ignore.

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Two former US Navy SEALs—Marcus Luttrell and David Rutherford—host the Team Never Quit podcast. Their Nyad episode aired November 7, 2017. Nyad should apologize to Lutrell and Rutherford immediately for subjecting them to her lies, including but not limited to the following:

Dishonoring Honor

Nyad begins the interview with a riff on honor:

(24:43) Right before the show started…we got into a chat about the word “honor.” And it could be that every person that stands up to speak these days, I don’t care, and I’m respectful, whether it be a rotary club lunch, or a 5000 person dinner, everybody starts with, “it’s an honor to be here tonight.” And when I listen and read about what you two guys have done, what the Navy SEALs do every day for our country, that is an honor for me to speak to you. And I’m really careful about that word honor. I just don’t throw it around….”

Yes, she does. She just did.

Nyad’s saying what she thinks Luttrell and Rutherford want to hear. She did the same thing with the interview from the last post, i.e. telling Dr. David Bach what she thought he wanted to hear. In both interviews, her intro implicitly belittles all previous hosts.

Also, a common tactic of con artists is to give themselves an aura of integrity by surrounding themselves with honorable, respectable people. Nyad uses Luttrell and Rutherford, as she uses Dr. Bach and many others, to camouflage her deceit.

Wait Just a Mad Minute

This podcast has a lightning round, the Mad Minute, during which Rutherford peppers the guest with questions that the guest ostensibly answers quickly and without thinking.

(25:51) RUTHERFORD: First thing that pops into your mind. Where’d you grow up?

NYAD, answering immediately: New York, Paris and Florida.

On the first pitch, Nyad gets an easy lob right over the plate, but she can barely connect:

  • She did not grow up in Paris—her mother did.
  • She was born in New York but moved to Florida by the time she was three.
  • She did grow up in Florida.

Nyad gets a point for Florida and maybe a charity half-point for New York.

Round Up the Usual Suspects

(30:12) Cuba is the Mt. Everest of the earth’s oceans.
(31:23) People have been trying since 1950.
(31:32) Almost died, should have died from the box jellyfish.

No, it’s not; no, they haven’t; and no, you shouldn’t have (respectively). See previous post for further info.

More Stuff That Nyad Assumes the Hosts Want to Hear but That Bears No Relationship to the Truth Whatsoever at All

(32:10) To me, it was about the journey, it was about much more than about making it.
(38:51)  I [am] never, ever thinking of the other end.

The Meaning of Life Plus Two
…as per Douglas Adams.

(39:00) We had 44 people on the boats around me in that expedition I was describing to you, everybody’s got their part. They’re proud—they want not only to succeed, they want to succeed with ethics and with determination.

Nyad has also given her crew count as 30, 35, and 40. I count 41. This isn’t so much a lie as an astonishing oversight: given the importance of this endeavor, she seems pretty clueless about who was helping out. Or maybe it’s just another case of Nyadian number inflation (see below).

By the way, I have no doubt that most of Nyad’s crew did want to succeed “with ethics and with determination.” I also have no doubt that Nyad cared not at all about ethics but only about finishing at all costs.

Broadway Bound

(48:02) So I’m goin’ around the world, I’m speaking four or five days a week, all around the world, to all different kinds of groups. There are lots of things in this life I have no talent for at all. I do have a talent for standing on stage and telling an arc of stories.

Frankly, I want to go to Broadway one day. I’m capable of telling a story that is riveting and you can’t hear a pin drop. And then the next moment, people are laughing uproariously, and making it entertaining.

Of course she wants to go to Broadway. That would put her in THE spotlight, not just in any spotlight. Recognition and adoration are Nyad’s raison d’êtres. So watch out Broadway because here comes Diana Nyad:

Maybe She Meant to Say “Eggo” Way

(49:07) The 25 million people who reached out to us at the end of this swim, you know I don’t say this in [an] ego way, I’m tryin’ to say that it resonated. So it was the biggest, the #1 Google search in the world for a coupla’ days.

According to Google trends, “Diana Nyad” was the highest searched term for one day, September 2, 2013.

And 25 million people? I don’t think so. Nyad does magical things with numbers: she makes them grow or shrink depending on whether, according to her own calculations, growing them or shrinking them makes her look better. For example:

  • 6 becomes zero
    [number of women to swim around Manhattan Island before Nyad]
  • ~10,129 becomes 560,000
    [people who responded to her blog post about Caitlin Jenner]
  • 1 becomes some number quite a bit greater than 1
    [the number of people who don’t believe Nyad swam all the way from Cuba to Florida under her own power—the lone skeptic being, according to Nyad, “this one guy in Ireland“]
Not-S0-Reluctant Hero

(63:55) That phrase, ‘reluctant hero,’ isn’t that what every hero winds up being? I can’t think of a true  hero who stands up pounding his chest saying, ‘look what I did everybody.’ That doesn’t happen. Most heroes are reluctant. They did what they did because they had to, because they were committed to it, because the wanted to out of passion. And even if no one ever knew about it, they woulda’ done the same thing.

Nyad implies that she, a true hero, wouldn’t stand up and pound her chest (tell that to Penny Palfrey and Chloë McCardel) and that she would have swum from Cuba to Florida even if no one was looking.

That is, of course, bullshit. In a momentary flash of honesty back in the seventies, she was clear about her motives:

I want to be known as the very best at something and have a reputation for that. I didn’t say be the best…. I said be known as the best. I feel that pressure very strong. (Miami News, 16 June 1978, pp. 123.)

Betting on Fingernails Would Make You a Fingernail Bettor

Finally, Rutherford asks Nyad, “What do you want people to remember you for?” Nyad gives an amazing and nauseatingly disingenuous answer:

No, David, it’s not the list, it’s not the accounting, taking out the ledger and say, ‘Did she make some money? Did she get in some halls of fame?’ It has to do with: How did you live a life? Have you lived a life, when you got to the end of it, that said, wow, it went by like lightning, and I didn’t have a chance to do all the things I wanted to do, help all the people I wanted to help, go all the places I wanted to go. But I got no regrets. I lived it so that I couldn’t have done any day a fingernail better.

Hey, that rings a bell. I think I heard it on the road to the Olympics:

In her 2015 commencement address at Lake Forest University, Nyad describes the end of her race at the 1968 US Olympic Trials. Except that she never qualified for the Olympic trials. The complete Diana Nyad Olympic trials fantasy begins about 10 minutes into her speech.

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