Diving with the Dude
By Kevin Juergensen ( The Dude)
My Latest Dive with McKenney
I called my
ex-wife, to ask her if I could borrow some of the kids support payments
so I could go to Fiji with McKenney and my 17 year old blonde actress
girlfriend, Candy. For some reason, she got really pissed off
(she s really irrational sometimes). So while she was at
work, I broke into her house (well, I still have a copy of the
housekey...), and had a moving company take all of her furniture to the local
pawn shop (I left her the microwave so she could still heat up some Stouffers
for the kids).
After collecting the $500 bucks for all of her furniture, I
Turns out that $500 wasn t enough to buy the
plane ticket, so I faked her signature on the Visa card that I borrowed from her
to buy the tickets for me and Candy. I don t know about you, but I didn t feel
like flying coach for 14 hours. First Class is the only way to go, and nothing
is too good for my Candy.
After sipping champaigne and eating
lobster for 14 hours, we finally arrived in Nadi, Fiji. I was a little
short on clothes, and so was Candy, so I took her to Jacks for a complete
wardrobe. Once again, that ol Visa came in handy.
left, I had Candy call the ex's Credit Union, pretending to be her, and
wire transfer the kids college fund to Bio-Marine Instruments for a pair of
CCR-155 rebreathers to be shipped via Gulf Stream jet to Fiji for us to use on
the trip. I had never used one of these before, but Kato told me they were
really cool, and that I would look like a real diver with one on my back.
Besides, McKenney had one, and he s pretty cool, so I bought em.
I met McKenney on the island of Matagi, where I booked
Candy and me the honeymoon bure. This is where the first problem of the trip
occurred: Nigel informed me that the Matagi Island Princess II had been booked
by a group of gay Orthodontists who wanted to take millions of pictures of soft
coral - one of the most boring things that god ever made, if you ask me.
Well, the last thing I wanted was a group of
tooth-fairies cluttering up the boat with their neon colored wetsuits and tanks.
Let em buddy-breathe in PNG I cried. Besides, McKenney said that cool divers
only wear black, and that it makes you move quicker through the water if you
look like a ninja.
So, I decided to buy the boat. I had
borrowed some checks from my ex s employer, so I forged her signature and
transferred all of their bank account to the Matagi folks offshore Cayman bank.
(Hey, the ex has a good job, she ll be able to pay it off in a few years...).
Finally, we had the boat to ourselves. On the day
before we set sail, McKenney and I drank lots of Kava. We decided to play some
cards, and he lost badly. I wound up owning his entire film library, his house,
his car, and also his slave, Bob Keet. I think he didn t mind losing the library
or the car, but he was particularly pissed off about losing Keet. Why, he s the
best boy I ve ever had lug my gear he cried over and over. " Too fuckin bad,"
sez I. Although I did feel a little bit bad, since I was using a marked deck
that my uncle Vito had given me.
So the next day, were on the
boat. Candy spent the entire time puking up banana daquiris and
bitching about there not being any tampons in all of Fiji. (Jeez - women are
sometimes more trouble than they are worth...).
to set up my rebreather, since I didn t know anything about them except
they looked pretty cool. We re going pretty deep on our first dive he says, so I
ll set your ppO2 to 3.6 ata.
Is that where its supposed to
be? I said, Sure, since we ll be at 300 fsw for most of the dive, that
ll just about do it...
He had a funny look on his face, but
I guess he was just feeling awkward since he now had to pay me rent to live in
So we get to the dive site, a place called
Champion Reef. Its out in the middle of nowhere, but they assure me that its
down there. I went down to the stateroom to see if Candy wanted to dive. She
said no, then puked all over my Ninja Black dive booties.
insisted that safety was a primary factor in our dive, so I geared up
with all the required stuff that he said was necessary. In addition to my
rebreather, I had 4 80cf bottles with the most unique manifold I 'd ever seen
(all four tied together) that led to a second stage made by some company in East
Germany (I think the same one that made their cars).
I had three knives
strapped to my chest, and both legs.
I also carried 4 Dive-Rite square
lights, signal flares, 2 SpareAirs, 2 Dive-Rite reels, 3 safety sausages, 2
redundant Dive-Alerts, 500 assorted cylume light sticks, and a Riffe 5 foot long
quadrupel band speargun with a .50 cal. powerhead and 200 rounds of ammo.
I looked at McKenney (who was wearing only his
rebreather and pony bottle) on the swimstep and said you sure I need all this
stuff? Sure he said, "until you re used to handling emergency situations like
me, a REAL diver, you need to carry this stuff. "
" O.k " sez
I... I also had to put on about 65 lbs. of weights, since McKenney said
that the rebreather was really positively buoyant.
Well, the moment
of truth came. We were over the spot, and the captain of the boat gave
us the thumbs up sign. He looked at me, and shook his head sadly as I returned
the salute. I guess he was just envious of all the gear that I had.
Well, we were off...
I broke the surface of the
water, and immediately began sinking faster than the Lusitania. I
looked up at McKenney as I descended at 200 feet per minute.
me an are you o.k? sign with his middle finger (he explained that
gesture to me as only being used by tech-divers ).
I knew that
something was wrong, and yet I was so touched by this simple, kind
gesture of a man that I had somewhat taken advantage of, that I just couldn t
burden him with my concerns. I returned the gesture as a symbol of our
As I descended further, I was startled by the
sound of something exploding - it was my Dive-Rite lights, the ones that George
Irvine had sold me at that garage sale. Shoot I said, I m gonna get my money
back from George. Fifty cents apiece is a lot of money .
that I needed to add some air to my B.C, since I had just passed the
600 fsw mark, and my ears were beginning to hurt. I pumped my b.c. to the point
where I was cutting off the blood flow to my neck, but I still was dropping
"Damn " I said, " I need a better BC..."
As I passed the 1000 fsw mark, things got pretty
dark, but the water was full of these bright shiny objects that just floated
around in front of me. I saw lots of colors too in psychedelic patterns....
I then saw the weirdest thing... I tunnel of light opened
up in front of me that seemed to stretch on forever. I saw figures at the other
end, and thought I heard them calling my name. A man approached, and as he got
closer, I noticed that he was Orson Welles. How s Merv Griffin doing? he asked
me. "How the fuck should I know, Orson " I replied.
You wouldn t happen to have a pork-roast on you, would
you? Orson asked me. Or a gallon of heavenly-hash ice cream? Nope,
sorry Orson I said.
" Well, don t come back here until you get
some!!" he thundered, like the voice of God. He then turned away, which
was really gross, because he was wearing one of those hospital gowns with the
backside open, and his butt looked like a hairy version of the Blob ... The
tunnel of light disappeared, and I thought I heard him mumble rosebud... .
Just then, I felt this incredible banging sound on my back
- turns out the bottom of one of the 80 cf. bottles had impaled itself on the
sunken anchor of some Spanish Galleon that had sunk in the 1800 s, and now
rested on the bottom in 2000 fsw. The impact knocked loose a chest that was on
the bow of the ship, which fell onto my lap. Just as I was pondering this find,
the hull of the tank gave way, and all 320 cf. of compressed air started coming
out the bottom of the single tank.
Va-voom!! I rocketed up
through the water column like a Trident missle. I felt a sudden SLAM! at about
350 fsw, but didn t see what I had hit.
Then all of a
sudden, I breached the surface, and saw the clouds. I probably got
about 50 feet of air when the tank finally was empty.
The next thing
I know, I ve landed on the sun-deck of the Matagi Island Princess
I've got a chest full of gold on my lap, and
as it turns out, a trophy-class marlin caught between the manifold of my tanks.
(The gold was valued at over $300 million, and the Marlin made the Guiness Book
of World Records, and got me an appearance on the Tonight Show, and a 3 picture
deal at Paramount).
I removed my gear, and went below to
see Candy, and tell her of my strange vision of Orson.
When I got to
my cabin, there was McKenney in bed with Candy. I was quite surprised,
and rather shocked. So were they...
Just before I started to get
mad, though, McKenney explained to me that he got pretty narced on the
dive - so much so that he started thinking he was ME. He must have been pretty
convinced himself, cause he managed to make Candy believe it as well. Well,
since he thought he was me, and Candy did too, I told them it was all right, and
asked them if they wanted fish for dinner...
Candy was so happy to
see me, that she got a little too excited, and started to throw up all
over again. Poor girl... When McKenney saw the gold, he started throwing up too.
I guess he really did get narced bad...
Well, anyway, I decided that
McKenney was a true friend, so I told him that I was going to let him
keep Bob Keet.
Besides, with the rent money he was now
going to pay me, and all the gold I had found in the treasure chest, I was going
to be able to hire my own help.
I decided there and then that when I
got back, I would hire the ex to clean my house for me - as long as she
didn t ask for more than $5.00 an hour.
On the trip back to L.A.
McKenney was rather silent. I guess the beauty and majesty of the South
Pacific was still with him. I know he still wonders at the mystery of the place
as well, because all the way home he couldn t stop muttering "I can t fuckin
believe it, I can t fuckin believe it! "
When we arrived in L.A.
I hugged my good friend McKenney goodbye, and reminded him that the
rent checks were due on the first of the month.
parted, he gave me the tech-diver are you o.k? sign. Once again, I
returned this gesture of friendship, and headed home to my new house in
Malibu... I dropped Candy off at the bus station and gave her $10 toward her
ticket home, even though I really don t believe in
McKenney is now planning a trip for us in the North
Atlantic. He says that I ll be the first diver to reach the Titanic on
air. But first, I have to take Katos deep air course in the Mariana
I just thought you'd all like to hear my
Diving with McKenney Part II
Diving with McKenney Part III
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