“There’s mermaids out there in the bottomless blue!
An’ it’s hey to the starboard, heave ho!
Watch out for’ em , lad, or you’ll go to your ruin
Mysterious fathoms below!”
(Last verse in the song “Fathom’s Below” from Disney’s animated fantasy film “The Little Mermaid.” )
The neverending legends surrounding the Greek mythological Merfolk (half human male or female, and half-sea creature featuring fishtails) have captured our imagination for thousands of years. For years, sailors and residents of coastal towns around the world have told tales of encountering these sea maidens. Fact or fiction, we probably will never know, but it’s definitely a fact that items produced with mermaid depictions are quite collectible today. In the collector’s world, certain types of figures are more desired to own, than others. Currently desired are tropical birds, cats, dogs, owls, elephants, and sea creatures.
In 1837, a Dutch author-Hans Christian Andersen wrote a story we have all heard of: The Little Mermaid. It was the story of a young mermaid who was willing to give up her own life in the sea for a human being. Then in 1989, Walt Disney took the story and brought it to life with the American animated musical fantasy film “The Little Mermaid.” The fictional mermaid named Ariel is quite famous today.
(By the way: Disney’s vintage “The Little Mermaid” Black Diamond Classic VHS tapes with a controversial cover; aren’t worth in the thousands of dollars. In mint, unopened condition-maybe in the hundreds range.)
Thanks to Hans Christian Anderson, the movies-Pirates of the Caribbean and Splash (1984); and Walt Disney’s animated film, The Little Mermaid, there is a renewed interest in mermaids today. Toys, home decor, art, jewelry, mermaid-style dresses, and most anything with mermaid depictions are highly sought-after. Literally- Mermaid Mania!
Mermaid fact: It took actress Daryl Hannah over 8 hours to put on her intricately handpainted mermaid tail for the 1984 Ron Howard directed film “Splash.” (Hmm…I wonder what Ms. Hannah thinks of mermaids today?)
When I see a picture of a mermaid, it reminds me of how fascinating our precious ocean and its creatures are. I’m a scuba diver, and after going on a few dives in the Caribbean, I realized underneath all that water, there is indeed a special fairytale-like, peaceful environment. Bright colors and uniquely shaped creatures seem to live in perfect harmony with each other. A dream world for sure.
Do you want to see a real mermaid? Next time you take a vacation to Florida, check out the fabulous Weeki Wachi Springs Mermaid Show. This unique underwater tourist attraction opened in 1947 and is still a popular attraction today.
Quote of the day: “Be a mermaid and make some waves.”
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