I was on Facebook today. I was on Facebook about five hundred times today. While on Facebook one of those times, I saw an old friend’s post, asking if anyone might be interested in sky diving with her in October. I replied first, and fast! Me! Me! Me! Me! An exchange ensued and we are both going to save our pennies and jump out of an airplane somewhere in Northern California some Saturday in October.
A few other people responded to the post, others expressed interest, several expressed fear.
Oh, yah, I have fears, I’m just saying “fuck it”. I actually have a fear of heights, but I enjoy rock climbing and have gone sky diving (once) before. I’d have gone sky diving again, sooner, but it is prohibitively expensive. Until I took a job, seven years ago, that required me to fly back and forth across the U.S. 75% of the time, I was also kind of afraid of flying. I’m trying to work up the nerve to climb Half Dome. I have a fear of fire, but still love roasting marshmallows and prefer to cook with gas. I can’t imagine how terrifying drowning would be, but I love swimming, rafting, kayaking, hot tubs, and the occasional bubble bath.
I’m also a little afraid of grizzly bears. And mountain lions.
I decided to Google some stuff, here are some fearsome statistics I found:
- Sky Diving in 2014 there were 24 U.S. fatalities out of 3.2 million jumps. That’s 0.0075 deaths per 1,000 jumps
- Half Dome – 9 deaths since 1995, one of which was a suicide and 2,500 – 3,000 people per day climb during the summer weekends, for a total of about 50,000 climbers per year.
- Mountain lions – 1 death per year in the U.S., meanwhile, pet dogs cause about 31 deaths per year in the U.S.
- Grizzly bears – there is only about 1 death per year in the U.S. by all species of bears. Grizzlies don’t actually hunt humans, except in the fall, before hibernation. Further, there has never been an attack on a human by a grizzly when there have been six (or more) hikers.
- There are 1.3 million people, per year, who die in car crashes, worldwide. That’s 3,287 deaths per day. 40,000 of those are U.S. car crashes.
- Sitting in your recliner watching TV (also known as a sedentary lifestyle) is responsible for 5.3 million premature deaths, per year, worldwide
Lions and tigers and bears, oh, sigh. So, I’ve decided sky diving and climbing Half Dome are in and driving is a necessity. I mean, I’m going to have to drive to get to Yosemite to climb Half Dome and to wherever the airplane I’m jumping out of will be departing from. Don’t worry, I’ll be careful. I’ve also decided that my decision to not own a recliner or subscribe to television programming were the safest decisions I’ve ever made!