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Thread: A somewhat sad conversation last night

 


  1. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doomnova View Post
    My first experience with a GUE person was during my first dive after open water and I can say I will never dive with her again. It was a dive run by one of the local shops on the weekend aimed at doing local dives within the limits of newer divers. When she looked at the sign up chart noted that I had just done my OW and pulled me aside and said "Ok you can come and dive with us just don't get me killed or ruin my dive". Simply put she was lucky I was in a good sense of humor. Funny thing is she as the DM for that Saturday dive should have expected newer divers. Needless to say I have not gone back to that shop to do a weekend dive since and honestly it made me look down on the whole GUE/DIR crew quite a bit from an initial meeting. Despite my respect for their work towards perfectionism. This is also despite the fact that every other person i have dove with notes how good my trim is and my buoyancy control is and the lack of dangling articles. It could be a once off sort of thing but it does from first impressions leave and impression that GUE/DIR folks are a bunch of assholes (not saying they are) who only respect others like themselves. Will i take a GUE/DIR course down the road perhaps, but I also remember the events of that day quite well and will make me a bit nervous when it comes to that training.
    ... a pity ... you have one of the nicer GUE instructors in your area that I've ever met ... Guy Shockey. I'd recommend using him as an example of GUE/DIR in your area ... not some DM from a dive shop ...

    ... Bob (Grateful Diver)
    It was just below freezing and snow was falling steadily. As we stepped toward that portal separating a cold and dreary world from the tranquility and wonder of another dimension teeming with life and color a passer-by shook his head and muttered "crazy". Poor fool. If he only knew. (Airsix)

    Come visit me at http://www.nwgratefuldiver.com/

  2. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by BVickery View Post
    From reading the post, it seems a lot of people place a ton of emphasis on the gear chosen (BP/W, hose length etc). To me, in essence, DIR should be ALL about skills in the water and not about the gear. I should be able to dive competently with BP/W or Jacket. Long hose or Short. Low Volume mask or regular. Split Fin or Blade. Hog Harness or Deluxe.
    But...but... I thought expensive equipment was a replacement for good skills!

    Before I got into diving (and had kids, for that matter), I spent a couple years as a weekend warrior Solo racing with the SCCA. Every event, we had a large contingent of regulars of all skill levels in all kinds of cars (98 Civic for me), and a few new alpha-types who would show up in shiny new sports cars. Then, once the driving started, some regulars in stock Honda Civics or the like would put up better times than the guy in the brand new Mustang/Corvette/etc. Really put a lot of things into perspective for young, impressionable me.

    It's not the size of your equipment, it's how well you handle it

  3. #43
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    grantwiscour's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doomnova View Post
    My first experience with a GUE person was during my first dive after open water and I can say I will never dive with her again. It was a dive run by one of the local shops on the weekend aimed at doing local dives within the limits of newer divers. When she looked at the sign up chart noted that I had just done my OW and pulled me aside and said "Ok you can come and dive with us just don't get me killed or ruin my dive". Simply put she was lucky I was in a good sense of humor. Funny thing is she as the DM for that Saturday dive should have expected newer divers. Needless to say I have not gone back to that shop to do a weekend dive since and honestly it made me look down on the whole GUE/DIR crew quite a bit from an initial meeting. Despite my respect for their work towards perfectionism. This is also despite the fact that every other person i have dove with notes how good my trim is and my buoyancy control is and the lack of dangling articles. It could be a once off sort of thing but it does from first impressions leave and impression that GUE/DIR folks are a bunch of assholes (not saying they are) who only respect others like themselves. Will i take a GUE/DIR course down the road perhaps, but I also remember the events of that day quite well and will make me a bit nervous when it comes to that training.
    That's a sad commentary on the person/DM. It sure wouldn't have made me felt good about diving.

    One latter part of your post reminded me of a recent vacation. Diving Oahu, my wife and I were going out with the DM from our first Intro to Scuba dive. We had about fifty dives under our belts at the time. He commented to us how nice our rigs were setup with no dangling SPGs or octos. After diving he told us that we were becoming good divers with good bouyancy control and safety protocols. I think he was proud of seeing somebody that he turned on to diving "getting it". I was proud because he was proud of us.

    We're still not "great" divers but we dive safe, have fun, make friends and try to be good to everybody. We'll keep diving and learning and try to shake off any A-Holes that we run into diving or anywhere else.
    "Our fears are like dragons guarding our most precious treasure."
    Rilke

  4. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by TSandM View Post
    Doomnova, stories like that make me sad, because that was one individual who poisoned your view of a whole group. You said she was the DM for the group, which means she was a DM for some other agency (since GUE doesn't have DMs) -- why didn't you decide that THAT agency was full of bad guys?

    I have met GUE and UTD trained people I didn't like, or didn't think were nice people -- although very few, because as far as I can tell, in general, divers tend to be pretty nice people. But I think they were just not nice people to begin with -- I don't think choosing that style of diving made them that way. There are always people who are going to lord it over others, or flaunt their fancy equipment, or sneer at awkward newbies, and I mean in any sport -- I've seen it in riding, skiing and diving.
    the person was with PAID which I also did my OW with. It was my course instructor who actually helped me get over my initial fears and get me into my OW class and well I'm up to my AOW and in time I may go up to instructor but I am in no rush. So by that time it was a 1-1 ratio of good and bad. After meeting up with all the folks at the U of Victoria scuba club I've yet to meet a person I dislike and honestly have inspired me to keep going and feel that how I am going about training myself to be a better diver is the right way to go about it and that one day when I am ready should consider making the jump form just a diver to DM. I'm not saying I plastered the whole group now especially after reading as much as I do here and watching I see DIR not as much the devil as she made it out to be to me. But still I think people forget how they act reflects on an organization as a whole. Just as how I act reflects on my family as a whole and if that action causes a negative impression it is harder for others to dig their way out of the whole that the initial person as dug. So the people here have changed my mind a fair bit about the DIR mentality which is good but looking back at past posts (ie years ago) of people you can easily see the zealots not representing the cause well.

    Many people who I dive with think I'm a DIR person, but that is mainly because I try to help them improve their technique to be more efficient I jokingly call myself a DIE (Doing It Efficiently). But I also approach them and give them the option to tell me they are not interested and and have full rights to tell me to shut up and I will. Also after the fact I impart them with the choice of heeding what I have passed on or not and that is what the zealots (and usually the loudest part of the bunch of any group) fail to do. It is my way or the highway.

    For me gear is secondary choice. I made my equipment choices based off what my instructor used and my kit is almost a carbon copy of hers. Since she took me through how it all works and the operation of it all. which means I'm using a back inflate BCD. But I also and looking at down the road a BP+wing but not at this time. But people should also be grateful that there is choice. Some are better than others. Some have advantages and disadvantages be they perceived or not.

    But it ultimately comes down to can you have fun and enjoy diving while being a safe diver for both you and your buddy and I think many people forget that. Which you shouldn't need a special course to instill that. It should be instilled before you get your c-card and if you do not have they shouldn't have the card in the first place imho.

  5. #45
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    Well i've only been here for a few months, and i certainly was NOT turned off to GUE/DIR diving by scubaboard. Quite the opposite.
    What I did see soon after joining was a couple of threads with some DIR 'bashing' in it. I also saw a couple of links to the GUE Gear Config webpage. I thought the GUE page was interesting in a techy kind of way, but had no idea what they were on about with this backplate thingy. I also didn't even know what DIR was, so I didn't make the connection between this webpage and the DIR methodology straight away.

    Then I discovered this forum called "DIR" and started to try to find out what it was. This was not actually an easy process (hint, i think GUE really needs to improve their initial web presence, and I think the DIR guys could write a very simple "This is the idea behind DIR" sticky).

    Anyway, I was at the time both keen as mustard about this new diving thing, and completely frustrated with the SSI classes i'd done. I felt I was passing classes without actually being taught how to be a better diver.

    Long story short, I ended up looking up the local GUE instructors, and noticed that one of the names was very familiar. Turns out that one of my wifes work colleagues is a GUE instructor. And one of the nicest guys you could meet to boot. So my only interaction with GUE divers has either been here online - where they (and in particular TSandM) have been extremely nice and patient with my questions, and Nick, who is going to be my instructor, and has already spent a lot of free time helping me out.

    So for me, SB turned me ON to DIR diving. But i've only been here a little while.

  6. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by NWGratefulDiver View Post
    ... that's like asking if the term "PADI" stands for "Professional Association of Dive Instructors", does that mean that if you're not a PADI instructor, you're unprofessional?

    It's a marketing term ... there are no hidden meanings ...

    ... Bob (Grateful Diver)
    I have to disagree with your comparison, I think it is invalid. PADI's name says that they are a group of professional dive instructors, not that they are what you must be to be professional. DIR, standing for Doing It Right strongly implies that it is the system that is correct, it is right. It is not much of a stretch to take from that that non-adherents must be doing it wrong, it may not be a logical truth but the inference is there.

    This (seemingly) presumptuous label was a large part of what originally put me off on GUE/DIR as being "kool-aid drinkers". If the philosophy had a more benign label I'm sure it would not have the same reputation it does today. Like it or not who ever made up the label in the first place was probably in the elitest category...I don't buy that marketing had anything to do with naming the philosophy.

    I did eventually come to understand the fundamental idea of standardization as a safety measure and learned the importance of solid fundamental skills. I have come to see that GUE/DIR has real value and contributes much to the dive world, I have even joined GUE in order to buy the books and do some home study...a decision I do not regret. But I have never taken GUE training courses and don't practice DIR mostly because no one I know does and if I did then I would be the non-standard diver who was DIW.

    Bottom line for me is the name "DIR" has built in attitude and the message it implies is not entirely correct. The standard gear configuration COULD be safely rearranged and still be "right" if everyone in a given group used the same setup...I'm sure that there were dissenters with valid alternate reasoning in every stage of deciding the standards used. It would be just as accurate to call yourselves DIOW, Doing It Our Way, and the rest of us can call it DIYW for Doing It Your Way but it wouldn't have the same ring to it

    Question: Is DIR just a label for a GUE trained diver who practices all the skills taught or is DIR beyond even that? If it is the former then why would you expect any different reaction to the Doing It Right label, why set yourselves apart as "right" and not just call yourselves GUE? Just asking.




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  7. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by BrotherBear View Post
    Question: Is DIR just a label for a GUE trained diver who practices all the skills taught or is DIR beyond even that? If it is the former then why would you expect any different reaction to the Doing It Right label, why set yourselves apart as "right" and not just call yourselves GUE? Just asking.

    His name is mighty little, he's a good horse.
    GUE doesn't even use the DIR term anymore ... but to answer your question more directly, it's generally associated with a style of diving, not a specific agency. GUE and UTD both claim to teach that style, although there are significant differences in both their approach and philosophy ...

    ... Bob (Grateful Diver)
    It was just below freezing and snow was falling steadily. As we stepped toward that portal separating a cold and dreary world from the tranquility and wonder of another dimension teeming with life and color a passer-by shook his head and muttered "crazy". Poor fool. If he only knew. (Airsix)

    Come visit me at http://www.nwgratefuldiver.com/

  8. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by OzGriffo View Post
    Well i've only been here for a few months, and i certainly was NOT turned off to GUE/DIR diving by scubaboard. Quite the opposite.
    What I did see soon after joining was a couple of threads with some DIR 'bashing' in it. I also saw a couple of links to the GUE Gear Config webpage. I thought the GUE page was interesting in a techy kind of way, but had no idea what they were on about with this backplate thingy. I also didn't even know what DIR was, so I didn't make the connection between this webpage and the DIR methodology straight away.

    Then I discovered this forum called "DIR" and started to try to find out what it was. This was not actually an easy process (hint, i think GUE really needs to improve their initial web presence, and I think the DIR guys could write a very simple "This is the idea behind DIR" sticky).

    Anyway, I was at the time both keen as mustard about this new diving thing, and completely frustrated with the SSI classes i'd done. I felt I was passing classes without actually being taught how to be a better diver.

    Long story short, I ended up looking up the local GUE instructors, and noticed that one of the names was very familiar. Turns out that one of my wifes work colleagues is a GUE instructor. And one of the nicest guys you could meet to boot. So my only interaction with GUE divers has either been here online - where they (and in particular TSandM) have been extremely nice and patient with my questions, and Nick, who is going to be my instructor, and has already spent a lot of free time helping me out.

    So for me, SB turned me ON to DIR diving. But i've only been here a little while.
    This for all practical purposes mirrored my introduction to DIR and GUE. Every aspect of their style had a logical and time tested reason behind it's existance. There is defiantly pitfalls in organizing classes that the more experienced, like TSandM can help sort out. Most of the more abrasive posters have fallen away to other forums or left the sport entirely in the past year or so...

  9. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by TSandM View Post
    No, he was very clear. He thought we were all jerks and dive Nazis. He was very pleasantly surprised.
    I don't have any trouble seeing where he would have that perception from board traffic. I happy to hear he found your group to be the opposite. The DIR kind is pretty scarce around here but the tech types I run into are entirely decent folks.

    Just as is true for many gear perceptions (BP&W, APEK Regulators, jet Fins) internet forums seem to elevate preferences into ugly aggressive dogma. It's easy to be crass and inconsiderate when you aren't looking the other part in the eye. Frequently I see DIR types putting non DIR divers down for not seeking their higher plateau. A big rub is that many if not most divers local GUE training is not readily available even if they wanted it.

    Pete
    My ever growing collection of assorted ramblings on scuba topics can be read here.

    No sequence of classes will make a good diver out of you, if you aren't actively diving and practicing in the meantime.
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    Quote Originally Posted by spectrum View Post
    ...//...Frequently I see DIR types putting non DIR divers down for not seeking their higher plateau. ...//...
    I swore to myself that I would stay out of this...

    But not always. I am both non DIR and seeking my higher plateau. -with help from BOTH non DIR and DIR friends and acquaintances alike.

    Thanks again, Lynne, for your answer to my PM concerning trim. Most helpful.

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