In what feels like a beautiful metaphor for masculinity, “aspiring bubble runner” Reza Baluchi has been dragged back to land by the Coast Guard for the second time after attempting to do something stupid and impossible that placed an undue burden on others.
CNN reports that Baluchi had planned to travel 1,033 miles—from Pompano Beach to Bermuda, then to Puerto Rico, Haiti and Cuba, then back to Florida—in what is essentially a giant inflatable hamster wheel whose interior, according to Baluchi, can reach an inhospitable 120 degrees. According to an April 20 dispatch on his website, RunWithReza.com, Baluchi planned to survive this “life threatening journey at sea for charity” with “protein bars, tuna, sea water purified through a filter, Gatorade and chewing gum for sea sickness” as well as a “hand designed Ultimate life jacket.”
Baluchi also planned to “sprinkle ashes from ground zero in each ocean.”
The Coast Guard has sent out several tweets indicating their irritation with Baluchi’s ill-advised journey and emphasizing the many, many taxpayer dollars that would be funding his rescue:
After being ordered not to depart by the Coast Guard—who in the letter seen above cited his lack of a support boat and threatened a substantial fine and prison time if the order was violated—Baluchi found a support boat and set off on his merry way, appearing to believe he was no longer violating the order.
According to CNN, Baluchi’s 2014 rescue cost $144,000; the Coast Guard was called after receiving reports of “a disoriented man in a bubble off the coast of Miami, who was asking for directions to Bermuda.”
During his 2014 rescue, according to ABC Action News, Baluchi’s bubble popped.