Thursday, April 16, 2009

On parachuting blind...

I was conversing with a friend the other day, when our talk turned to parachuting. He stated that not many blind people parachuted and asked me if I knew why that was.

Deciding to play along, I answered no, I did not know why.

Says he: "Have you ever heard a seeing eye dog at 12,000 feet?"

Carrying on the conversation, he asked me if I knew why women wore men's athletic cups when skydiving?

Again feigning ignorance, I answered: No.

Says he: "It's 'cause if they don't, they whistle like coke bottles on the way down!"

"Good one", I say. "You got any more?"

"Just one...", says he.

This lad's been taking skydiving lessons for a week now and he's pretty much got the drill down.

- Jump clear of the aircraft.

- Count slowly to 10,

- Pull the ripcord on the main chute,

- Look up... check the canopy and lines.

- If the main chute doesn't deploy... DON'T PANIC!

- Pull the ripcord on the reserve chute.

- Observe the deployment of the reserve chute.

- Bend the knees... feet together on landing.

- Drop and roll.

His big day comes and as the Cessna reaches the correct altitude, his coach gives him the thumbs up sign and taps him on the shoulder. He rises from the jump seat and makes his way to the open doorway, grabbing the wing strut to steady himself against the onrushing wind.

His instructor taps him on the helmet and he launches himself into the void, arching his back and spreading his limbs as he does so.

Slowly he counts to 10... then pulls the main ripcord.


His training kicks in and he refuses to give way to panic. Calmly he reaches for his reseve chute's ripcord. He pulls it free.

Again... nothing.

At that precise moment as he is hurtling earthward, he is passed by a body hurtling upwards!

Amazed, he screams out hopefully: "HEY!! DO YOU KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT PARACHUTES????"

From the rapidly receding figure he hears: "Nooooo... Do you know anything about gas barbecues????"

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