Help Wanted: One Chief Shark Officer

Looking for a change of pace, a new job perhaps? If you’re ready to swim with the sharks then the Discovery Channel has the perfect opening for you.

“Must enjoy exotic, waterfront locations, buff bodies in bathing suits and having the bejesus scared out of you," reads an ad released by the television channel Tuesday morning. "Looking delicious in a wetsuit is a plus. Sense of humor required.”

In celebration of the impending 24th annual Shark Week, The Discovery Channel is in search of its first ever Chief Shark Officer, “a fun-loving, fast-swimming personality” to head one of the channel’s trademark shows. The job's main duties involve, of course, swimming with sharks -- but also attending premier parties in New York, Los Angeles, and Miami.

“Sharks in general are captivating critters, one of the charismatic megafauna,” shark expert George Burgess told Burgess, a director of the Florida Program for Shark Research, believes the elegant animals are a constant reminder of human fallibility.

Sharks have captivated the mainstream consciousness ever since the 1970s, when Steven Spielberg’s pulsating thriller Jaws reminded us all that it may not be safe to go back in the water.

“We expect the natural world to sort of part in front of us and give us assurances that we’re safe all the time. Nothing could be further from the truth,” Burgess said.

In a sense, sharks are nature’s wake-up call -- and though the Discovery Channel promises the accompaniment and supervision of professionals, the danger is very real, he warned.

“They’re one of the few animals on earth that can cause harm to a human or even death,” Burgess said. “In a world that we as humans control in so many different ways because of our brains and our technology, the fact that there is still an animal out there that can kill us flies in the face of our haughty sensibilities.”

It comes as no surprise, then, that one of the advertised benefits of the job is “lots and lots of insurance -- and some great dentistry, naturally.”

The 24th season of Shark Week airs this summer on the Discovery Channel.