Saturday, September 02, 2006

Mastered B. Goggles 1949-2006

Born and raised in Alice Springs, Australia, Mastered B. Goggles fell in love with all things water based. Primarily he loved to be in it swimming. Unfortunately the Todd river that runs through Alice Springs is dry most of the year round which used to frustrate Mastered no end. It was to this end that he developed the prototype swimming goggles, initially known as “Aquaxperience Spectacles” as their purpose was not to protect the eyes from water but to give the impression that you were immersed. It is believed that the inventor of the 3D specs, Billy Dimensions, based his glasses on the technology developed by Mastered.
Early attempts were full of enthusiasm, but low on ability and technical know how. The first go consisted of Mastered just painting fishes on the inside of his father’s old welding mask, which was cumbersome and not the slightest bit realistic. What it lacked visually it lacked even more in feeling, as Mastered sat there bone dry. Eventually the specs were refined with a coloured tint and a vibratory effect in the headband that gave you the impression of being submerged. For the movement he found an old table top which he attached skateboard wheels to so he could propel himself along.
It fell to Mastered’s uncle to notice his potential. Walking back from the shops one day he noticed the young fella zooming along the riverbed at breakneck speed. Thus it came to be that he flew Mastered to Brisbane in his small airplane to undertake swimming trials with the national coach.
The rest as they say is history. Mastered B. Goggles leaves behind a family, 3 Olympic gold medals and a generation of much happier natives of Alice Springs.