There are different levels of legend, a whole spectrum of legendariness.
On the one hand, you’ve got the “Thanks for lending me that biro, you’re a legend mate” legend, or the “Have you met my friend Dave? He’s a legend” legend, or the “He did what to Amanda? What a legend!” legend — none of whose achievements, if we’re honest with ourselves, are likely to be preserved for posterity’s sake. On the other hand, the slew-the-dragon, saved-the-princess, patron-saint-of-England sort of legend.
And then you’ve got Mick Fanning, who sits fairly comfortably at either end of the scale. Here he is above, fighting off a shark, standing tall inside the guts of a mutant Shipsterns beast, winning the heat of the year at classic Pipeline . . . And here he is below, passed out on the shoulder of Bede Burbidge — who after fracturing his pelvis at Pipe last week has likewise been able to lean on Mick.