Sede Vacante

The light is on but no one is home.

Archive for February, 2009

The Tandem Jump FAQ

(This post was originally published as a note on my Facebook page.)

Ok, because a bunch of people are spamming my inbox… 🙂

1. No, not really that scary. But the rush is phenomenal. It’s a little annoying that the freefall lasted only 30 seconds or so… BUT…

2. The float down on the ‘chute was actually more fun and exhilarating. We did some spins and turns, and no one ever tells you of the rush you feel when you’re doing these moves on a ‘chute. It was actually more addictive than the free-fall. You can really feel the g-forces pile on, and you hear the wind suddenly whipping as you gain speed. You can even make the thing dive… yes, with the ‘chute on. I always expected it to be a boring floating-down-with-nothing-to-do kind of experience. Now I really want to do it again, or take up hang-gliding. IT ROCKS!

3. The song is “Radio Song” by a French group called Superbus. It’s from their Unsorted album. It also appeared in Guitar Hero 3 (for XBOX) where I learned of them and became a fan. You can find the music video on Youtube.

4. It cost about 275 USD. The video and stills cost me an additional 135 dollars. Meh.

5. You can get certified in around 8-10 jumps which takes you from a number of tandems, to static solos, to completely oh-my-god-I’m-all-alone-with-my-nads-and-my-chute-and-my-creator solo.

6. Yes, I’m seriously considering getting certified. But 2750 dollars isn’t cheap. But then again, we all die anyway, and we can’t take the money with us. 🙂

7. Yes, the instructor who kept me alive was this lovely lady called Dee who was all pro and all helpful and happy. Yes, I was strapped to her. Yes, pelvis to pelvis. No, you can’t do it facing up. No, she’s not available. Yes, her hubby was waiting on the ground. Yes, he’s twice my height and weight. No, you don’t want to mess with him. 🙂

8. Yeah, I was screaming all throughout free-fall. Didn’t even realize it. Didn’t even hear it. All you hear is wind. Once the chute deploys though it becomes quieter. Was having a nice conversation with Dee on the way down, and she let me take the ropes for a few calm spins. 🙂

9. No, I was not the one taking the pictures. Watch the video. It was this nice dude called Yuri. I assumed from the name and the accent that he was from somewhere in or close to Russia. Possibly the Ukraine or something. I’m not good enough with the accent to place it specifically. I’ll make sure to ask if I can find him on Facebook. Anyway, no, I wasn’t about to go jumping out of a plane with my camera gear. Yes, he was using a pro-looking helmet-mounted cam complete with a sighting reticle over his eye. No, I didn’t want to ask if he could fire missiles with that thing. Yes, I’m sure you can buy missiles cheap in Russia.

10. Yes, I’m quite happy I did it. 🙂 Yes, I think people who like that sort of rush should try it at least once in their lives. Yes, it’s about as safe as driving your car to work in the morning, in the streets of Manila. 🙂 So yeah, DOH ET!