In the throes of this year’s rendition of Discovery’s cacophony of teeth and excited narration, I think it’s prudent that we keep in mind that sharks are way, waaaay down the list of things that could potentially kill you. In 2011, for example, there were 75 total, both fatal and non-fatal, shark attacks. Loss of life is tragic, and there is always some risk associated with being in the ocean. That being said, you have a enormously higher chance of falling victim to car accidents, the flu, drowning, lightning, cancer, heart disease (these and more at this list, a small sampling, but I think you get the idea) than to the great toothy beasties of the deep.
For a longer, and generally more complete take on that, see this post I wrote on the onset of last year’s Shark Week (located an embarrassingly few number of posts down from this one). If you’re interested, here’s the page for the International Shark Attack File, and here’s the summary for the 2011 shark attacks.