Beachcomber has been contacted by a VIP member of Kernow Association of Sub Aqua Clubs, asking why he has disregarded information given by a Cornish Leak about no less august a figure than a South-west regional coach. That information concerned the coach's activities at the association's camping and diving weekend, early this past summer.
Beachcomber felt, on this occasion only, that it was the Cornish Leak who should be fined - for drawing attention to something that may well have happened to many a boating diver at one time or another.
The real divers who make up Beachcomber's distinguished readership may disagree. So should this regional coach really be fined for the DIVER Lifeboat Fund?
It seems that he set off with the second wave of divers in a RIB one sunny afternoon, only to be found soon afterwards drifting and radioing for assistance on a dedicated VHF channel. This radio activity was hardly surprising, because on board the RIB there was also a senior regional VHF instructor.
Rescue teams on shore were marshalled, but before they could be launched, the coach's boat was towed back in.
The truth soon outs. Our coach confessed that he had failed to check the boat's fuel level when he took it out for the second dive.
He was not a wit abashed, and joked later that the first thing he will teach in future is to check for a full fuel tank before setting out!
It emerged then that the regional coach is also a boat-handling instructor, running courses of that ilk.
My Kernow Leak says that, although this couldn't have happened to two nicer people than the regional coach and the VHF instructor, he felt that the seriousness of those who should know better taking a boat to sea without sufficient fuel should be appropriately publicised, and punished by a fine of a least a crisp crunchie.
Beachcomber felt that the coach had learned his lesson. Nor would anyone taught by him be allowed to forget that lesson themselves. Do you want to overturn Beach-comber's decision not to impose a fine?
You meet some strange people aboard liveaboards. That is not a criticism of the boats, though it may be of the odd crew-member, and the even odder diver they occasionally find among their clients.
Take the case of a very early-morning dive on the wreck of the Thistlegorm in the Red Sea. My Sharm Leak reports that two new divers were recently taking a wreck-diving course there. Suddenly, their instructor saw that they were about to become entangled in a fishing line with a bait fish on the end. So he tried to move the fishing gear out of their way.
The result was his sudden ascent from 20m to 10m, attached to a fearsome hook buried in his finger. Fortunately, it tore loose, and the instructor was left shocked, but fortunately with only a minor, if painful, flesh wound in his hand.
Back on the surface, the divers discovered that one of the crew of another dive-boat had been fishing over the wreck, while they had been in the water below. Despite some forcible protests, the man continued fishing as other groups dived the wreck, and continued even when divers on his own boat took to the water.
He went on fishing even when one of his divers had a problem - falling from the ladder after his dive with his mask and regulator removed, sinking from sight and finally being rescued vomiting violently.
My Sharm Leak suggests that that this Red Sea fisherman should be heavily fined. And he will be, with five crisp crunchies going, not to the DIVER Lifeboat Fund as usual, but to a fund devoted to restoration work after the Red Sea terrorist bombings.
The dangerous fisherman, the dive-boat's captain and the rest of the crew should make sure that those crunchies reach me at full speed, or I shall have to name names, including that of the boat.
All those women divers who have pleaded with Professor Beachcomber to restart his plastic surgery advice in this column will get some comfort from this surprising news. Surgeons in the nip 'n tuck business tell me that they are amazed that Prof Beachcomber gave way to male divers objecting, in angry letters to the Diving Beauticians Association, about their female dive buddies seeking to make themselves more beautiful.
The truth is, say the top consultants in this booming field, that it is the male divers who are now swamping the DBA with requests for plastic surgery - for themselves!
The DBA reports that the main demand is for Botox injections to smooth away heavy wrinkles. This is closely followed by other procedures, particularly nose reshaping, eyelid surgery, liposuction, hair transplants and general facelifts.
Whatever happened to the weather-beaten wrinkles, hooded eyes, hook noses, bald heads and other characteristics of the sexy manly divers of not so long ago, who attracted so many gorgeous women to be their buddies?
A long time ago - in April this year, to be precise - I asked you all why it was said that divers should never push their masks up on to their foreheads. I was given this advice in the very early days, but I can't for the life of me remember why you shouldn't do it.
A goodly number of veterans said the same thing, and there were a fair number of comedians among those who replied saying that it made it difficult to look through.
One or two said that it was an accepted diver signal of distress and that they had read that in some manual or other, but couldn't say which.
There were some who believed that it was an unofficial sign of a novice. Others said that it was the easiest way to lose masks over the side when you pulled your hood off - DIVER's Editor can vouch for that, and he has never worn his mask on his brow since that long-ago day!
But surely there must be at least one diver who knows the real reason for never pushing your mask up on your brow.
Please let Beachcomber know - it's driving him mad!