John Fairfax is a badass

I present, Exhibit A:

So this guy crossed the Atlantic Ocean in a rowboat. And then he crossed the Pacific Ocean, also in a rowboat. Decades ago. Just because.

Here are some highlights of John’s life, as detailed in the New York Times:

In 1972, he and his girlfriend, Sylvia Cook, sharing a boat, became the first people to row across the Pacific, a yearlong ordeal during which their craft was thought lost.

On a camping trip when he was 9, John concluded a fight with another boy by filching the scoutmaster’s pistol and shooting up the campsite. No one was injured, but his scouting career was over.

At 13, in thrall to Tarzan, he ran away from home to live in the jungle. He survived there as a trapper with the aid of local peasants, returning to town periodically to sell the jaguar and ocelot skins he had collected.

He later studied literature and philosophy at a university in Buenos Aires and at 20, despondent over a failed love affair, resolved to kill himself by letting a jaguar attack him.

In Panama, he met a pirate, applied for a job as a pirate’s apprentice and was taken on. He spent three years smuggling guns, liquor and cigarettes around the world, becoming captain of one of his boss’s boats, work that gave him superb navigational skills.

[During one sailing venture] Mr. Fairfax was bitten on the arm by a shark, and he and Ms. Cook became trapped in a cyclone, lashing themselves to the boat until it subsided. Unreachable by radio for a time, they were presumed lost.

Mr. Fairfax was often asked why he chose a rowboat to beard two roiling oceans. “Almost anybody with a little bit of know-how can sail, I’m after a battle with nature, primitive and raw.”

Is this the guy in the Dos Equis commercials?

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