Monsters of the Deep

We had a big day yesterday with a ton of transit rides and a trip to the ROM and then the CNE after we’d explored literally every single floor. Nefarious is now at an age where she enjoys and appreciates the museum (although she still does love running through the bat cave over and over), so it’s becoming an increasingly pleasant trip for me… although I think the most fun was having a hotdog, of which 75% was hand fed to the pigeons. Not tossed to them, but literally hand fed. Very tame/aggressive.

Swimming yesterday was a lot of fun with crazy-dive contests with another girl that was at the pool as well as a swimming contest between her and Nefarious which consisted of her swimming (she was much older) and Nefarious being thrown across the pool by me every time I caught up, but the day before was a little odd. Before we got there, a big douchebag-type guy was screaming at the far-too-little teenage lifeguard — a rather frail looking Asian guy — about how he was going to report him for being rude and so on. I sort of wrote it off because the guy was obviously an ass, but when he left I asked the mother that was there with her developmentally disabled son what had happened. I guess the lifeguard had decided he was not fit to swim, and had told him to leave the pool unless he was willing to do a “deep end test” to satisfy his worries. His mother, who was swimming with him, vouched for his abilities, but with the lifegaurd shouting at them about how he would call security if they didn’t comply, the kid just decided to leave the pool and sit in a chair instead. He seemed quite upset.

After Nefarious had been swimming for a little while — in the deep end — he came over and tried to pull the same stunt with her. I told him to forget it, and that I’d swum there every day for the last month and a half with her and that it was completely ridiculous, and that he could go ahead and ask any of the other lifeguards, but that I wasn’t about to do any “test” for him. After complaining for a minute, he eventually just said, “fine, I don’t care, have it your way,” and stomped off and shouted at the (most likely) autistic boy to jump into the deep end… Pretty unprofessional behavior for a lifeguard. I’m assuming though that he must have had a scare earlier in the day or something like that to make him so angrily paranoid.


  1. Mel wrote:

    well, i am also a lifeguard, and we do require a swim test from anyone under the age of 10, in order to swim in the deep end, even if they are a good swimmer. at the facility i work at, children under 6 are to be accompanied by an adult at all times, (although if they pass the swim test they can go to the deep end under supervision) We have had a few difficult people complain about having to do a swim test, but its for the safety of the patrons. The way i see it, if you can swim well you should have no problem doing a quick swim test. However, an adult, unless they are struggling, knows their own abilities and does not usually need a swim test. As for the autistic boy, I have encountered many levels of autistic people during my 5 years of working in an aquatic environment, and higher levels of autism make me very nervous, especially when the support worker or parent is not doing their job keeping an eye on the child. There have been many times I have almost had to rescue an autistic child, because they do not know their limits. It may have been a hard choice to make, and likely the lifeguard could have been more courtious, but, some people can be very difficult and rude as well

    Tuesday, August 26, 2008 at 10:41 am | Permalink
  2. Gracie wrote:

    Had this happened in America I would not have been surprised. People always have to cover their asses for fear of lawsuits. I don’t really know about Canada, though . . . is it the same?

    Tuesday, August 26, 2008 at 2:41 pm | Permalink
  3. Shannon wrote:

    I don’t disagree with anything you’ve said on the whole Mel, and if this had been the first time we’d swum there that might be just fine, but when this happens to tenants that are daily swimmers at the pool long after they’ve been doing the same thing, it’s not right…

    Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 9:49 am | Permalink
  4. Mel wrote:

    No, we usually remember faces of regulars and they dont usually need to do a repeat, unless it seems they are struggling. I agree, getting asked to take a swim test by the same guard everytime would be annoying. And today was my last day of my summer job at the best pool ever… I will miss it until next summer

    Friday, August 29, 2008 at 1:10 pm | Permalink
Wow Shannon, that's really annoying! What is it, 1997 on Geocities? Retroweb is NOT cool!

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