The DIR Diver Ontogeny

Posted on news:rec.scuba May 2000



As you all know, many forms of amphibian life undergo dramatic changes in their lives : they may change size, shape, limbs and sex. The present study will use the main avatars as stepping stones for the decription of the ontogeny of the Diver : 
1) the Young Diver has no brains, and may be male or female 
2) the Stroke has brains, and may be male or female 
3) the DIR Diver has brains, and is predominantly male 
4) the DIR Poster has a keyboard and no sex.

Chapter I. The Young Diver (posted 19/05/00)


The birth of a Young Diver comes at the creation of a C-card. While pregnancy can take anywhere between 2 days to 45 years, 4 days are considered reasonable. Multiple births are frequent, and generally occur on battered, cold and lonely beaches, where natural predators are scarce. 

Reproduction is obtained by scissiparity of the mother, also called "Instructor". At birth, an instant and strong relationship is created between the Young Diver and its mother ; it will last forever. The Young Diver will follow its mother everywhere, especially in humid  environments like underwater and bars. This very particular relationship is rendered necessary by the fact that the Young Diver is born with no brains ; please note that its biotope is  dangerous, and it would be immediately preyed upon if not protected by its mother. 

This period is supremely important in the life of a Diver, as many of them will never learn anything else than what is taught in this early life. The Instructor will point at the most important features of the environment : 
"This is an urchin, do not touch. This is a shark, do not touch. This is your d*ck, do not touch." 

Early mutations.

Quite a few mutations occur during the early life of a Young Diver : it grows fins, develops a facial mask, and sheds a number of neoprene skins before attaining adult age. You might recognize an Instructor's offspring from the similar shape and color of their fins. A number of these mutations seem to occur around Christmas. 

The pairing of Young Divers

When the mother thinks it is time for its next "pregnancy", it starts severing off the quasi-physical relationship. It will do so either by showing them to a surrogate mother, or by pairing its offspring : following its instinct only, the mother pairs off the Young Divers, regardless of sex and size, and sends them to drift away. It is a miracle of Nature that so 
many of these brainless babies survive. 


Wetsuit Young Divers are commonest ; they usually hang out in bars. Their Drysuit cousins are sturdier, they usually hang upside down. 

Baby talk.

The Young Diver, having no brains, cannot sustain a normal conversation ; it still tries to exercise its immature voice by asking numerous questions, at which older Divers will only smile caringly, and will make a point not to answer - that might have an adverse effect on the intensity of the relation with their mother. A few examples that allow you to instantly recognize a Young Diver : 
- "How do you adjust your ears ?" 
- "Should I do the Divemaster course ?" 
- "Why are there so many OT threads ?" 
- "What does <MHK hits at 1.9 again> mean ?" 
It may happen that an unknowing other Young Diver tries to answer ; this is wrong, and calls for immediate intervention of a DIR Poster (see chapter 4). 

Sexual intercourse.

Immature Young Divers should not have sexual intercourse, again to preserve the quality of relationship with the mother. While most babies are too busy growing new BCs or asking questions to be interested in sex, they should not be left alone too long without close supervision of an elder form of Diver. 

At the end of their development, Young Divers grow brains, which transforms them into Strokes. 


Chapter 2. The Stroke. (posted on rec.scuba 05/26/00)

General Behavior.

Now the Diver has acquired brains, it may be called an Adult Diver, or preferably Stroke. These brains are obviously too young and unfit for thinking, but still the Stroke thinks it can think ; it will immediately stop asking questions (typical of the Young Diver, see Chapter I.), and start providing answers to everybody and everything. It is easy to recognize a Stroke from such sentences obviously spurt out compulsively : 
- I will never be a DIR Diver, but... 
- I have entirely understood the DIR Philosophy, and decided to push it one 
notch further... 
- I recently bought a DIR mouse, and it does *not* improve my diving 
- I think some posters here have a grossly exaggerated importance 

The Special Relationship with DIR Posters.

This uncontrolled behavior is not dangerous per se, provided it gets immediately corrected by a DIR Poster (see Chapter IV.). The DIR Poster, in all its wisdom, will immediately point out the wrong for the benefit of all. 

This joint behavior is the very basis of diving customs and civilization. 

As there are many more Strokes than DIR Posters, the answers must be short and lashing, otherwise their too little numbers would not suffice. Nevertheless, some Strokes will play their part very heartedly, and will produce too many wrong posts. It is not unheard of that a single very gifted Stroke may be the focus of 5 or 6 seasoned DIR Posters' attention. 

The Great Migrations.

Like eels, the young Stroke will start fantastic migrations. It is a still unexplained miracle of Nature that some Strokes, tagged in Cozumel by our research team, have found their way back to the cold waters of the Saint-Laurent, where they were born. Quite a sizeable number of migration spots have been identified now, and it is a Federal Offence to poach Strokes in most of these locations. When they return from a migration, the Strokes will post a "dive trip report", which has no interest at all, other than to remind other Strokes that they should start their own migration real soon now. 

The Chamber Ceremony.

In spite of the permanent, harrassing work of the DIR Posters, it may happen that some Wrong Doing is Done. This is a cause of furor from the DIR Gods, and calls for a Chamber Ceremony to gain their appeasement. 

While the author of these lines has not attended an actual Chamber Ceremony, I have seen the inside of one, and it is not difficult, due to my long-standing archeological background, to imagine what it looks like. Here goes. 
A young virgin is introduced in the Chamber and laid on the couch ; a priest sits by her. The Chamber is then closed, weird substances ("gases", see Chapter III.) are injected into it. They induce a Trance, the priest slits open the virgin' throat, and that's about it. 

While some may question such barbaric customs on the eve of the 3rd millenium, the availability of young virgins today should be a matter of concern to the diving community. 

Fire Divers.

Fire Divers are a very rare type of Strokes. Their subspecies is not treated here ; still considered a legend by some authors, their very short life span makes them very difficult to study. 

Stroke Predators.

The Stroke is the most vulnerable form of all Divers. Shark attacks are definitely the least cause of death to Strokes ; other dangerous predators, called "marriage", "kids" and "tummy" account for more than 70 % of Strokes stock attrition. That's why the Stroke is a Protected Species ; please remember, next time you eat tuna, to check that it complies with the Stroke's World Kare Protection Program (WKPP). 

The DIR Demo Ceremony.

At the end of their development, the few surviving Strokes will start learning to correctly use their brains, talk less and dive more. A DIR Poster, in all its wisdom, will recognize it for a fact, and will decide to enlighten them through the Flash, aka DIR Demo Ceremony. 
While the author of these lines could not attend an actual ceremony, it is quite easy to put together its main lines. Here goes. 
The DIR Poster organizes a gathering of mature strokes on a boat ; in a Flash, it makes them loose instantly all of their Strokes attributes (computers, BCs, bio fins, wetsuits, etc.) and they all grow brand new DIR Divers attributes (harnesses, BPs, wings, reels, stage bottles, you name it). A young virgin is then introduced, and does the cooking. That's about it. 

At the end of their development, most female Strokes evolve into males while reaching the DIR Diver form.


Chapter 3. The DIR Diver.

The DIR Diver is the most versatile form of all Divers ; traces and remnants have been found everywhere on Earth and other locations. They were the first proof of former presence of water on Mars, as a DIR rig has been sighted in a Mars Canal in 1991. They are best found in dark, deep and dangerous locations like sewers, water tanks, wrecks, underwater caves and kitchen sink siphons. 

While the Young Diver (see Chapter I.) is mainly busy growing new fins, while the Stroke (see chapter II.) is busy migrating and answering non-asked questions, the DIR Diver does all the diving. Whatever, wherever you may think of, the DIR Diver has been there, done that, got the T-shirt. 

The DIR Rig.

While DIR Divers claim that all Divers should follow the same design, it is a strange feat of Nature that no two DIR Divers look exactly alike. They widely differ in size, temper and voice volume. Some grow a second cylinder and stop there, some have been seen with as much as 6 of different sizes and colors. Some are highly paid, some are not paid at all. The differences are endless, and their only common feature is : they dive. 

Their common obsession to renege amphibian life in favor of a purely underwater environment deprives them of an access to the Internet, due to the poor performance of PCs underwater - you will not find them designing webpages or posting on NG - I'm telling you, they dive. 

The DIR Philosophy.

Now has come the time to talk about the DIR Philosophy. 

Look, I really tried them all : from Buddhism to Zen to neo-Cartesianism to good old Platonicism and Tantrism - DIR beats them all to a pulp. It's more powerful than the Bright and Dark sides of the Force together, sweeter than love, stronger than hot chili peppers, wilder than Rock and Roll, it comes at you mean and clean, and man, it blows your mind. That's about it. 

Now, will you say, why a philosophy ? Well, just try and wait eight hours in cold water, doing nothing but staging your stage and watching your watch, without a philosophy, you'll know what I'm talking about. 

Note : the DIR Philosophy will even help you quitting your wrong habits of highway speeding, as no pedal-to-metal is allowed. 

The DIR Diver Habitat.

The home of a DIR Diver is a bell-shaped steel thingy whose main feature is : it's too small. It's filled with special substances ("gases", see below) and old issues of Playboy. Nevertheless, it is home for a DIR Diver, and it's sacred. The habitat usually lays 300 ft underwater, but you may sometimes see them at surface level. You should see a DIR Diver emerging from water, frightened by normal terrestrial life, it will desperatly run (actually limp) for its habitat, enter it and close the hatch. Media-shy critters, they don't even carry a mobile. 

If you ever see a DIR Diver, please do not feed it, as its diet should be 100 % "Lobster", and you might endanger its future development into the next mutation (see Chapter IV.). "Lobsters" are a particular type of hamburgers that grow in the sea ; they are eaten well-cooked, with a sledge hammer. 

The Holy Aluminum Stage Cylinder.

When the DIR Diver is young, it has no habitat yet. Habitats usually grow from special seeds called "stage bottles". You will often see a DIR Diver spending endless hours with its "stage bottle", lovingly nurturing it through a hose, dreaming of how big a habitat it will be when it's grown up. 

These seeds are sacred - do not even think of taking one from a DIR Diver. They usually carry mock copies in the form of gold jewels, key-rings or gas lighters. 

The Tank-filling Ceremony.

The best moment to sight or catch a DIR Diver is during the ceremony of tank-filling. Not unlike the Japanese tradition of tea, this ceremony is highly dependant on special substances called "gases". While the author of these lines has not been privvy to a complete ceremony, extensive research allowed me to accurately guess what it looks like. Here goes. 
A few DIR Divers enter the temple ("compressor room"), carrying a large number of cylinders, and special "gases" containers. Then they will arrange and connect together these containers and cylinders : the more complicated and tangled it gets, the happier they are. Then they start the sound machine ("compressor") and have a party tasting all the different mixtures they can dream of. Then a young virgin is introduced, and does the cleaning. That's about it. 

At the end of their development, DIR Divers grow a belly and shed their sex, 
which transforms them into DIR Posters (see Chapter IV.). 


Chapter IV. The DIR Poster

DIR Poster physiology.

The DIR Poster, when mutating from the DIR Diver (see Chapter III.), grows a belly with a built-in keyboard. This keyboard is not connected to a PC at all : such is the power of the DIR Philosophy, it is connected to the Internet by mere mental power, and does not need an ISP - hence the occasional contempt for poor AOLers. To maintain belly size, the DIR Poster 
eats only tacos. 

The DIR poster has no sex. The Diver sex being considered as 1) not necessary to diving and 2) an oxygen consumption hazard, it is merely shed off in a harmless process, at the end of which it takes the shape of a pee valve adaptor. Sorry, no young virgins this time. 

DIR Poster behaviour.

While the DIR Diver (see Chapter III.) does the diving, the DIR Poster does the posting. Being the highest form of all Divers, it has reached complete understanding of the DIR Philosophy, and remains in a permanent trance. 

Every day, the DIR Poster will browse thousands of posts, identify the Stroke's posts, and, in all its wisdom, post the only appropriate reply. 

DIR Poster speech.

One can only stand in awe in front of the quasi-magical purity of  DIR Poster speech : 
"Stroke, do you know the 27 steps to achieving a safe deco stop ?" 
"Er, yes Master, I think I do" 
"Then you don't" 

Another example : 
"Why should it be 7 ft, Stroke ?" 
"I know that, Lord Almighty ! Because in a cave, when following the OOA..." 
"Childish gibberish. Think before you talk. <plonk>" 
Yeah man, wisdom at work for you. 

Now the punishment can go beyond mere plonking : beware that if you ever come across the following question, and you do not know the answer, the sentence is death : 
"Which diver dives with one cylinder in the morning, two cylinders at noon, three cylinders at night ?" 

DIR Poster records.

All DIR Posters are record-holders ; here are some of them : 
- longest thread of OT posts 
- largest amount of one-word posts 
- thread with name as subject 
- shortest response time to a Stroke post 
- most unclear description of how to breathe air 
- complete summary of medicine, chemistry and biology in a single post 

The Stroke's World Kare Protection Project (WKPP).

This study would not be complete without a hint at the lesser-known proceedings of the DIR Posters. Their actions are not limited to posting - they reach much further. They were instrumental in lobbying the Congress to make the Stroke a Protected Species. Says Hillary C., an anonymous, but eminent political character : "Yes, my husband and myself consider Strokes as one of our deepest concerns". 

This eventually lead to the creation of the Stroke's WKPP, another purpose of which is to study the reactions of actual divers when put in the hair-raising situations that only Strokes will invent ; there is no diver abuse there, as all are volunteers and highly paid. 

Safe Bubbles 




Bibliography and acknoledgements.

Chapter I. The Young Diver

scubafaq :

The pairing of Young Divers

Early mutations

and the best fins on earth :

Chapter II. The Stroke

General Behavior

The Chamber Ceremony

Chapter III. The DIR Diver

The DIR Rig

The DIR Philosophy

The DIR Diver Habitat

The Holy Aluminum Stage Bottle

The Tank-filling Ceremony

about young virgins :

Who are these guys ?

Chapter IV. The DIR Poster

The DIR Poster Behavior

DIR Poster Talk


Special thanks to