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 boat 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.
…had with him a clipping from the New York Tribune giving an interview as one of the many young Greeks who had stormed their consulate in New York when Greece was invaded, hoping they could get back so they could fight for their country.
As part of the festivities surrounding the 5th anniversary of Diana Nyad’s Cuba-Florida crossing, this open letter to the most reputable historians revisits one of Nyad’s biggest lies.
15 September 2018
Dear Reputable Historians,
You’ll recall that, back in 2011, CNN caught Diana Nyad lying about being the first woman to swim around Manhattan Island. In response, Ms. Nyad posted (then deleted) a disingenuous non-mea-culpa. You can still find it here.
The history is unclear. The dissemination of accurate information has not followed an empirical path. I am waiting for the most reputable historians of the sport to dig further and publish their research as to their collective best versions as to who did in fact circle Manhattan, when and how.
I write to you, most reputable historians, in the hope that you’ll grab your shovels and resume digging.
After years of writing and talking about herself, Diana Nyad misplaces three decades.
On a recent episode of the “Wild Ideas Worth Living” podcast, host Shelby Stanger asked about Diana Nyad about her expulsion from Emory University, an incident that Nyad has recounted numerous times. Surprisingly, she claimed that she had little memory of her teens, twenties, or thirties. She concluded, “…I don’t remember Emory at all.” Below are some excerpts from Nyad’s remarks. (For the full passage, please see “Diana Nyad on her memory.”)
I was in graduate school for Comparative Literature at NYU in 1975 and when I came back to school in the fall, after a summer on the world marathon swimming circuit, such as the annual swim across the Bay of Naples, from Capri to Naples, Italy...
Nyad may or may not have gone to NYU, but she did swim the Capri-Naples race the summer of ’75. It would be her last time: she finished fourth of seven women, 14th overall—not the best evidence for her “greatest long-distance swimmer in the world” claim (see “Nyad’s Promotional Materials”).
The first of three entries examining Diana Nyad’s bizarre response to being caught in her Manhattan lie.
In 2011, CNN caught Diana Nyad lying about being the first woman to swim around Manhattan Island. In response, Nyad did not apologize for—nor even acknowledge—her deception. Instead, she posted a blog entry full of excuses, justifications, irrelevant information—and more lies. Continue reading →
Nyad’s “Fearless!” performance contained much of her usual crowd-pleasing poppycock, but she hit the mother lode with her original take on protective headgear.
As per my previous post, Diana Nyad appeared on the New Yorker Festival’s Fearless!: Life on the Edgepanel on Saturday, October 7. Except for her religious conversion (see below), I heard nothing new…with one important exception: Ms. Nyad’s “Titanium Cap of Will.”
I hadn’t planned on writing anything about the event, but a Titanium Cap of Will? All quotes below come from Nyad at Fearless!. Continue reading →
Diana Nyad’s transparent and greedy Manhattan lie–“I was the first woman to swim around Manhattan Island”–gives us the key to understanding all of her deceptions.
Diana Nyad returned to Manhattan on Saturday for the New Yorker Festival’s Fearless!: Life on the Edge. The panel–arranged by a highly respected magazine, occurring on the island of her most obvious lie, consisting of three genuine articles and one fraud–provided an indicator of the success of Nyad’s deceit. Despite her decades of deception, she took the stage unabashed. She recited stories that she has often parroted in other venues. Only a few in the audience knew that they sat in the presence of one of the greatest sports cheaters in history. Continue reading →
A great read about the race to become the first woman to swim the English Channel, THE GREAT SWIM costars Mille Gade, 2nd to swim the channel (and to circle Manhattan). And then there are the touching bits.
The English Channel is the closest thing we have to a Mt. Everest of marathon swims, contrarians notwithstanding. I recently finished The Great Swim, a book about the summer of 1926, when four American women went to Europe, all wanting to become the first female to conquer their Everest. It’s a fascinating story well-told. The author, Gavin Mortimer, also writes of the aftermath–how being first nearly destroyed the life of the young and unworldly Gertrude Ederle.