Kristina Johnson Caught Inside Passage Exercise For this exercise, I chose two passages that appear repeatedly in one form or another throughout the book. In the first, Duane describes the living emotion that consumes you when in the water. For the second I chose a passage describing the natural beauty of the beach. In both pieces, as with the whole of the book, Duane describes the scenes in a way that takes you there, makes it feel more real than you could ever imagine. I would think that even someone who was not particularly interested in the water such as Duane or I can even appreciate the simple beauty described in these passages. Passage 1 p.29 I particularly enjoy this paragraph because Duane carefully describes and manages to give a fully realistic description of how people behave when you‟re actually in the water and how it feels after a long day out there. It reminds me of all the times I spent in the ocean and rivers skiing or bodysurfing. The irrational frustration when you just can seem to get up “he spun around with bits of spittle on his lips and his face in a mask of rage” (Duane, 29). I know that feeling all too well. You spend so much time actually working on the actual technique, but it doesn‟t matter if the water isn‟t just right. It‟s insanely frustrating because you just want to skim over the water and instead you‟re dunked head over heels until you want to scream, and Skinny did. “He turned back, slapped hard at the water, and screamed to the Pacific, „Come on, whore!’” (Duane, 29). I won‟t lie. I‟ve felt that way too many times and cursed out the water under my breath because it just wouldn‟t play along that day. It makes the ocean seem like it‟s a living, breathing entity and at that moment, it‟s the enemy. Passage 2 p. 45 In this passage, Duane describes the beauty of Vince slicing through waves and the glory of the beach itself. These are simple things that we so often take for granted; I can‟t help but appreciate Duane‟s ability to describe every detail in writing as if it were alive in front of him at that very moment. Watching Vince surf he says “On his feet early, he took a high line, nothing fancy. He moved from peak to trough and back again, arcing into the curl when the wall slowed down, stepping forward and trimming high when it sped up- the board an easy expression of unobtrusive desire” (Duane, 45). To me, that passage is absolutely beautiful. It perfectly describes the feeling of surfing, skiing, almost any high speed water sport. It is about grace; heavy handed, forceful moves only dump you off your board. You can almost smell the sea spray in these lines and see the sun sparkling off the crest of the wave like diamonds as his board cuts a white line through turquoise waters and the breeze floats over your shoulders. The passage encapsulates you in the moment, and for a little while you‟re there with them. You become Duane, and through this understanding, you can appreciate what he is trying to explain in this book.
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