Two summers ago, over the Fourth of July weekend, I visited a friend in the hospital. As I walked into the ICU room, the TV mounted on the ceiling glared into the darkness. The movie Jaws was playing, which I suppose has become standard fare for Independence Day television viewing. The patient was sleeping, so I sat down and began to watch. It had been several years since I’d seen it, and I picked up at (of course) the Fourth of July scene on the beach.
If you’re familiar with the movie, this is a very tense scene. The beach had been closed because of recent shark attacks, but the City of Amity had made the decision to reopen for the Fourth since a large shark had been caught and destroyed. The beach was the town’s only industry, and without tourism dollars, the town couldn’t survive the long winter months. So of course, the beach was packed with residents and tourists celebrating the holiday.
But there was a problem. No one was going in the water.