Jacques Cousteau: The Sea King
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An unprecedented and masterfully told biography of Jacques Cousteau that reveals for the first time the fascinating and compelling individual behind this famous television personality.
Inventor of the aqualung and fearless scuba diver, Jacques Cousteau opened up the ocean to a mass audience for the first time. Here, with the cooperation of many of the subjects closest confidants and family, Brad Matsen makes clear the full picture of his remarkable life, showing the father, military man, inventor, entrepreneur, and adventurer behind the public face. Vividly conveying the people, the science, and the lure of the sea that shaped Cousteau's life, Matsen paints a luminous portrait of a man who profoundly changed the way we live on our planet.
could go on a single breath of air while swimming free was about 130 feet; the longest he could stay down was about two and a half minutes. The balance between predator and prey was about to change. 3 BREATHING UNDERWATER When testing devices in which one’s life is at stake … accidents induce zeal for improvement. Jacques Cousteau DESPITE THE GRIM CERTAINTY that war in Europe was imminent during the summer of 1939, one topic dominated the Cousteaus’ lively dinner table in
away in the strong current, and saw Didi fighting to stay near the rope, which was streaming from the vertical. Dumas was flailing, and the bubbles from his regulator increased—a sure sign that he was hyperventilating in distress. Just as Cousteau was letting go of the rope to swim to the rescue, he saw Didi kick furiously. Seconds later, Dumas rocketed past Cousteau on his way to the surface. Exhausted, Dumas told Cousteau and Tailliez what had happened. As he had passed the 120-foot knot, his
transferred him to a military prison outside Paris. PAC knew that his chances were not good. Robert Brasillach had been executed despite a public outcry against killing so revered an author, regardless of his wartime crimes. There would be no dramatic outpouring of support for a relatively obscure newspaper editor. The volleys of firing squads echoed dozens of times a day in France’s prison towns, sending men far more luminous than he into eternity. PAC’s trial for treason was brief, little more
would pay only some of the bills. In six cities, he and his son Philippe gave speeches to sellout crowds in sports arenas. At the finale in Seattle, more people packed a basketball coliseum than had come to the same place to see the Rolling Stones a few weeks earlier. Before his lecture, as he had in each city, Cousteau set aside time to listen and talk to schoolchildren. They gave him flowers and drawings of seals, dolphins, whales, and one in which Calypso was depicted with wings hovering over
causing nausea, convulsions, and death. Philippe Cousteau (© BETTMANN/CORBIS) The sinking Cavtat was moving at 20 miles an hour when it slammed into the seafloor, rupturing its hull in uncountable places and scattering broken drums of TML into a poisonous corona around the ship. Instantly, fish, crustaceans, and mollusks within a half mile of the wreck began to die; many rose to the surface in the enormous oil slick marking the site of the collision. Two years later, after constant pressure