Thursday, May 20, 2010

Free Fall: What to do if You're Without a Parachute

I ended the post immediately below saying "...make sure your parachute is packed." Should you find yourself sans-parachute here's a post from June 2008 that may help (remember, that was before the action of September!):

Okay, the Dow Jones Industrials are Down 428 Points in the First Five Days of June. Now What?

Well, the retail guys have their lips on autopilot: "And Mr. Big, if you annualize that...", but I suppose that sounds better on the upside.

Grandmother would say something like "If the initial condition given is 'The sky is falling', your course of action would be to short sky, try the eggplant" guides us to:

Free Fall

The Free Fall Research Page

Admit it: You want to be the sole survivor of an airline disaster. You aren't looking for a disaster to happen, but if it does, you see yourself coming through it. I'm here to tell you that you're not out of touch with reality—you can do it. Sure, you'll take a few hits, and I'm not saying there won't be some sweaty flashbacks later on, but you'll make it. You'll sit up in your hospital bed and meet the press. Refreshingly, you will keep God out of your public comments, knowing that it's unfair to sing His praises when all of your dead fellow-passengers have no platform from which to offer an alternative view.
Let's say your jet blows apart at 35,000 feet. You exit the aircraft, and you begin to descend independently. Now what?
First of all, you're starting off a full mile higher than Everest, so after a few gulps of disappointing air you're going to black out. This is not a bad thing. If you have ever tried to keep your head when all about you are losing theirs, you know what I mean....MORE

Kottke's snippet:

Some survival tips for you next unplanned freefall.

...Snow is good -- soft, deep, drifted snow. Snow is lovely. Remember that you are the pilot and your body is the aircraft. By tilting forward and putting your hands at your side, you can modify your pitch and make progress not just vertically but horizontally as well. As you go down 15,000 feet, you can also go sideways two-thirds of that distance -- that's two miles! Choose your landing zone. You be the boss.

If your search discloses no trees or snow, the parachutist's "five-point landing" is useful to remember even in the absence of a parachute. Meet the ground with your feet together, and fall sideways in such a way that five parts of your body successively absorb the shock, equally and in this order: feet, calf, thigh, buttock, and shoulder. 120 divided by 5 = 24. Not bad! 24 mph is only a bit faster than the speed at which experienced parachutists land. There will be some bruising and breakage but no loss of consciousness to delay your press conference. Just be sure to apportion the 120-mph blow in equal fifths. Concentrate!