Nyad: The Motion Picture

For over forty years, Diana Nyad has longed for a biopic devoted to her favorite subject, Diana Nyad.* We know this because, during those forty years, she has made a number of pronouncements about just such an epic.

Another thing we know: the last post ended with “Up next: Not all is lost.”

It’s still true that not all is lost, but this other film-related subject caught my attention. I’ll do my best to return us to our home planet in the next post.

Meanwhile, back at the Annex…

Below is a chronological list—lightly and snarkily annotated—of all of Nyad’s biopic-related pronouncements that I know of. Please let me know if you’ve come across others.
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Diana’s Disappearing Ink

The first pattern that emerged from the “110 Miles…” discussion on the Marathon Swimmers Forum was Diana Nyad’s policy of active un-engagement.

Don’t Rock the Boat

Diana and/or her handlers must have calculated that their craft already rode so low in the water that any movement might swamp it. So Diana either does not engage with skeptics; or, when she momentarily forgets herself and does engage, she quickly erases the evidence, pretends nothing happened, and hopes that the boat stops rocking.

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A re-reading of “110 miles, 53 hours: Questions for Diana Nyad” sends the Annex swimming off in a new direction.

¡Feliz año nuevo!

“G Is For Gato,” by Dora Hathazi Mendes. Via Karavella Atelier.

I love the sound of Spanish, the music of it, the way so many words end by flowing out of vowels rather than by crashing into consonants: gato vs. cat, for instance, or perro vs. dog, calle vs. street, etc.

I don’t know enough Spanish, though, to converse in it beyond the level of un niño who has just turned three.

do know a thing or two about Diana Nyad.  She is a con artist and a fraud, and she will lie about anything. The last two Annex posts leave no doubt about that.

So just one task remains: proving that Nyad did not swim all the way from Cuba to Florida under her own power.
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“Diana Nyad Self Made Story” repost

What follows is a lightly edited version of a recent Facebook post. That version did not meet the high visual standards that the Annex demands (i.e. it looked really ugly), hence its reappearance here.

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“Meet Diana Nyad: Epic Adventurer Who Refuses To Accept Defeat” (Self Made)

Have I mentioned that Diana Nyad occasionally stretches the truth? She gave it a real workout in this recent interview with Nely Galán. Below the video, you will find an accounting of Nyad’s Self Made fictions.

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Caveat Scriptor: 5th Anniversary video #2

Diana Nyad again demonstrates her abysmal kindness and generosity while talking about all of the good that she does in the world.

In Tuesday’s installment—“SHARE with us YOUR Xtreme Dreams! Are you fulfilling your potential? What do you imagine doing with your next five years? Inspire us all by commenting below…”—Diana’s followers did not let her down. Check out the torrent of reverential responses.

Here in the eye of the Cult of Diana storm, Nyad continues to construct a levee against the flood of those who know her to be a charlatan. How could Diana—she who causeth the waters to part, the sitters to walk, and the smokers to smoketh not—ever lie? Wouldn’t happen in a million years, or so her believers can’t help but believe. (C.f. Lance Armstrong and LiveStrong.)

Here’s my favorite part of the video:
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Nyad’s 5th Anniversary Facebook Live Video — a Quick Look

Diana Nyad got through this paean to herself with a few well-worn fabrications, a warning about a future endeavor, and one horrifying episode of insensitivity.

Diane Strubel whispering to “I’ve Got a Secret” host Garry Moore,  4 Nov 1959. (Full episode here.) Diana Nyad swam around Manhattan in 1975 and still claims to be the first woman to do so. She was the seventh.

Yesterday’s Facebook Live Video — “Join us in celebration, today, the 5th Anniversary of the Cuba Swim Expedition…”—mainly involved Diana Nyad, before a small audience on the deck of a boat, talking about herself. She also introduced friends and family who, when they spoke, talked about Diana Nyad.

She couldn’t get through her part without a nod to the backlist:

The best men, women, fast, strong, young swimmers in the world have tried this swim. It’s the Mt. Everest of the earth’s oceans.

To review: Only five people besides Nyad have attempted solo crossings of the Florida Strait: See “Everybody’s Doin’ It.” And the Florida Strait is NOT the Mt. Everest of the earth’s oceans. Only one person claims that it is. See “p. 244.

Earlier, Nyad had enumerated her bilge-bucket list of what “the next things are.” Here’s the final entry:

I want to perform on stage and bring this story to life in a dramatic, storytelling way, and be known as one of the better storytellers of our time.

In other words, she’s gotta be storyteller #1, and she’s not going away any time soon.
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Diana Nyad and the Case of the Vanishing Video

To verify her 2013 Cuba-Florida crossing and protect herself from skeptics, why didn’t Diana Nyad film the entire 2013 attempt? Because she was protecting herself by NOT filming the crossing.

Members of Nyad’s crew filmed parts of the swim. But, within a few months of her 2013 conquest, almost all video from the event disappeared.

For example:

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Liquid Sisters: Comparing the Con Artistry of Diana Nyad and Elizabeth Holmes

Wall St. Journal investigative reporter John Carreyrou, in his recent book Bad Blood, writes about a charismatic, driven woman who professes that nothing is impossible if you only just believe hard enough. No, he wasn’t talking about Diana Nyad, he was talking about Elizabeth Holmes, founder and CEO of the disgraced medical technology firm Theranos.

Turns out it takes a bit more than that.

In March, the SEC charged Holmes with “massive fraud.” Last month, the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of California indicted Holmes for wire fraud and conspiracy.

Besides charisma and drive, Holmes and Nyad share other characteristics of accomplished con artists. Here’s one: the ability to convince people of the supposed purity of their motives. Former Secretary of State George Shultz on Holmes:
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Say it Ain’t So, Diana!

We can now prove, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that Diana Nyad lied about being in every book of aptonyms. Also: It appears that there may have been another wife in the life of Diana’s father, Aris.

Let’s review. In Find a Way, Nyad writes:

Today I’m listed in all those books where people live out the meaning of their names, a phenomenon referred to by the term “aptonym.” (p. 44)

In a previous post, I wrote that I could only find one such book: Steven Busalaachi’s Wacky News Names. I recently bought a copy and learned that not only did Busalaachi leave Nyad out of his book, he described why he left her out, naming her specifically. From the introduction:

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Another Day, Another Interview, v. 2: “My Lord, Will You Leave the Woman Alone?!”

Another Day, Another Interview returns with a closer look at Diana Nyad’s 2013 Super Soul Sunday interview. It’s all here: the lies, the hyperbole, the obsequiousness, my dog.


Ever on the lookout for opportunities to pander to her enablers, Diana Nyad wrote on Facebook a few months ago:

Oprah Winfrey has turned her television series SuperSoul Sunday into a podcast.

Podcasts are the platform du jour and Oprah, per usual, leads the pack. [May 31, 2018]

A brief history of podcasting may be in order:

Oprah may lead the pack in some areas, but podcasting is not one of them. The new incarnation of Nyad’s interview, however, prompted me to have another listen, and what a special listen it was. Hang onto your swim caps because, as Oprah says:

Your journey to become more inspired and connected to the deeper world around us starts right now. (:16)

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