Dear James Cameron:
Dive! Dive! No, seriously. I'm ready to get word that you're making the single greatest solo dive in the history of the world. I'm ready to follow the nearly nine hours of tense action as you torpedo in your ridiculously awesome vertical submarine 36,000 feet to the bottom of the Mariana Trench, spend six hours exploring the alien landscape, and then rocket to the surface.
I've got the news alerts set, the Facebook and Twitter feeds open, and I'm continuously trolling National Geographic's slick site covering all the action at sea. Hell, I'm even reading the daily marine reports from the Captain of the Mermaid Sapphire. Seriously - marine reports! I'm ready; are you ready? Because for nearly a week, everyone has been whispering with bated breath that "any moment now" this expedition to the bottom would be kicking off. It's been one giant tease in what's as epic to me as walking on the moon likely was generations ago.
I understand things need to be absolutely perfect to proceed. At the bottom of the Challenger Deep (the lowest point of the Mariana, nearly 7 miles down), its perpetual darkness with water temps only a few degrees above freezing. The pressure is a crushing eight tons per square inch. In your last test dive — some 5.1 miles down — your sonar failed, and you lost all communication with the surface. I mean, holy sh*t! But did you panic? Nope — because James Cameron keeps it cool.
"Sitting down there at 27000′, alone in the dark, with no comms, no contact whatsoever with the world so far above, and nothing but the ingenuity of the engineering to get me back," you wrote in a journal entry. "It’s simultaneously scary and exhilarating."
Right. Definitely not on my bucket list to experience. And to think you'll potentially be traveling an additional 9,000 feet (a little over 3,000 feet short of the distance to the final resting place of the Titanic) is just mind-boggling.
On second thought, take your time. Most of your movies are more than three hours long, and they always win at the box office, so there's no reason the start of this expedition shouldn't follow the same formula. The world needs more adventurers like yourself to make these moments a reality. If all 180 systems onboard the sub need to be checked three or four or nine times, so be it. Whatever gets you there and back in one piece is the priority.
But feel free to tweet me with updates, OK? I'll be waiting.