“Jaws” was nothing like I expected. Actually I hadn’t expected anything. I had merely accepted an invitation from a boy my age to see a movie, and neither of us really cared what it was about as long as we got to sit in the back row.
When I stumbled out of the movie theater a couple of hours later, I was so numb with shock, I couldn’t have cared less if I’d been with The Incredible Hulk or Pinoccio. No amount of sweet talk and kisses could shake me out of the zombie-like state I was in, and I hardly remember how I got home. My young and still fairly innocent mind was totally occupied with trying to digest the horrors that were now forever engraved in my brain.
The aftermaths of the quake stayed with me for years to come. In the beginning I felt way in over my head in the ocean, but fine in swimming pools. Until I watched action movies featuring shark basin constructed for the sole purpose of taking care of any unlucky fellow who happened to cross the gangsters, and of course eventually the gangsters themselves if the movie had just a tinge of justice.
Now I started looking over my shoulder (a potential shark snack) in all kinds of bodies of water. And always having someone, friends, foes, unassuming strangers, swim next to me. I, of course, always staying closest to the shore. Not only “better safe than sorry”, but also “better them than me”, were my mottoes.
Great was my astonishment, therefore, when…
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