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Yes, I know who you're talking about. It is these crazy guys, who jump out of perfectly good aircraft with the bunch of ropes and fabric in their backpack.

The only reason why they are allowed to do this is the fact that the pilot wants to get rid of them. Badly.

Having a cabin full of freaks which are laughing, kicking out the jokes only they can understand and giving each other high five from time to time... you know, I can understand the pilot. Some of these guys are so untolerable so the pilot makes them to get out in the middle of the way up (sometimes at 3,500 ft). The crazy bastards call this "hop and pop".

Aha. Hop'n'pop. You know. Hop! And pilot turns the red lights. I believe this is because skydivers almost never listen to the pilot so he has to give them a visual cue. Most of them are still allowed to drive a car so the red light still rings the bell. Surprisingly, this bell tells them "the fun is about to begin"! Green light follows.

Pop! The guy is popped from the plane. I suspect, sometimes, this happens not without a good kick to the ass from the humble bros and sisters. Why would they call it "pop" otherwise??? Then, there is always somebody who is curious if the pushed out guy got his lesson - you can always see a few heads out of the plane looking at the guy tumbling in the air. No, they had not been such freaks from the very beginning.

In the beginning the innocent guys and girls were lured into the small room full of weird stuff: worn out harness containers hanging on the ceiling looking like just taken from a dead body, creepy plane cabin imitation, tables on the wheels with soft tops looking very... very... suspicious. The whole place looks like a mideval torture chamber.

Then, during several hours they are asked to do a lot of strange things: hang in the harness and partially disconnect it from the hanging ropes, falling down like been hanged, assume strange poses on the soft table, fall and roll on the floor while other yelling "PLF, PLF!!!", memorize a lot of motions which doesn't make much sense for any decent person who got used mostly to the movement of glass with beer to the mouths.

I think, "PLF" must be an abbreviation for Practice Leaning to the Floor. But why jump from the small stair for that???

All this is sometimes interrupted with the videos showing multiple ways how the parachute doesn't work. And such videos for some strange reason are supposed to be encouraging. No way!

After a few hours, when the instructor ensured the guy is driven crazy enough already, they get with the student on the plane going up.

While it is the beginning, no normal person is going to jump out of plane, but these bastards got a trick for it: one of them holds the poor guy on one side, another - on the other side and then they suggest "just to look at the prop". Yeah, they are trained well so it is easy to push the relaxed guy into the air.

During the freefall their favorite joke is to tease the guy in the middle with quite inappropriate gestures.

The most popular is the gesture which the Rome Ceasers showed "death to him" to the gladiators at the arena: big thumb down. Some other gesture is the way people in the Europe say "you're an ugly goat" - two fingers apart.

When the student screams and kicks legs, they just tip the big thinger to the palm showing "shut up".

And when they sick and tied of the guy, they point to him, which will mean "fuck off, pull now so we cannot see your ugly face any more around".

Do you know why they give the guy the radio on the first jumps? They always say "it's a one way radio" but actually they enjoy listening to the screams of the student.

It is obvious that after such a treatment the guy goes nuts completely and gets an inevitable desire to repeat.

However, some of them reasonably try to get rid of instructors on the jump (who wants these freaks around, really???). The most popular ways are: don't give an exit count or exit in the middle of count, tumble like a bitch on the exit, hoping that the instructors will be lost, assuming the unusual positions in the freefall hoping the guys aside will not be able to hold on. Apparently, this almost never works – in the most successful cases the best achieved result could be the one instructor lost only.

With the time, guy's craziness goes deeply and it is only one instructor needed to make him out of plane. To check that the process of madness goes well, instructor requires the guy to do weird things on the jump: put the head completely out of plane and look for aircrafts, roll and rotate while falling, try to hit the small piece of land while landing.

The advancing on that way is almost completed when the guy decides to jump out of plane alone. However, after a few jumps alone almost all of them got a bit better and prefer to get out with a coach, trying to hang on him during the freefall. Obviously, it is safer to hang on something firm while in the air! They call it "docking".

The progressing in that is recorded in the special (I believe, medical) sheet (white or yellow) and then submitted to the organization which tries to keep account of the sick bastards. The organization is named USPA which is apparently the abbreviation for US Psychiatric Advisory. In 25 jumps and when all the symptoms are listed, USPA classifies the guy and assign him a first "A" number in the sad history of sickness.

The progressing classifications are:
A - Almost Hopeless
B - Better Be Avoided
C - Completely Crazy
D - Dreadfully Mad

It took time for USPA to figure out exact symptoms of progressing from one category to another. However the common anomalies were noted and listed (like jumping into the water, jumping in the middle of the night etc.)

It is noticed that many guys prefer to exit from aircraft not alone (some prefer to have as many jumpers as possible surrounding them). And this is a natural fear - and it is not a rare to see multiple jumpers hanging on each other in the sky. Sometimes, by chance, their formation looks even nice. However, within a minute they realize that hanging on the other guys don't help them from getting close to the earth and they break off and fly do the different directions, obviously scared. I personally saw 30 such guys at once, flying from each other as fast as they could.

Some of them try to pretend nothing unusual happens and flying sitting - like they were at home on a sofa. Some prefer to have some roof over the head and flying head down.

Anyway, all of them soon realize that something goes wrong. "Most probably", they think, "it is that heavy backpack drags me down to earth" and the obvious decision is to get rid of it. For some unknown reason all of them start with ripcord or BOC pilot chute... In a few seconds the parachute opens and now they have the desire not to get down to earth somehow satisfied. Poor bastards! They could have simply stayed in the plane instead!

Any reasonable man can confirm that having as big umbrella as possible above you is safer under the open sky.Who know, what can fall from it on your head. Especially, when you are flying. So, obviously, the most experienced skydivers land with two parachutes over them.

They call their parachute "canopy". "Canopy" must have came from Russian “konoplya” and in Russian it means "cannabis" - something that gets you high, which obviously is associated both with the parachute and the whole process itself. "Get high naturally!" - they say, - "Skydive!”

Hmm... I think skydiving should be declared as a controlled substance too.

Note, while under canopy these guys are very dangerous and do not hesitate to use their awful knives (designed in the best traditions of Jack the Ripper) if somebody else decided to join them. Even if another guy just wanted to chill out together!

The separate branch of the symptoms is the animalizing. Some of these guys (and their number is progressing with the years) decide that they are not humans but the... birds. Yes, birds!!! I suspect birds flu has something to deal with it. They take on the bird-like costumes. Sure thing, somebody is making money on this heavy mania, selling the bird suites to them. Then they jump out of plane. Another proof of the animal-like anomaly is then they get and fly together. They call this "flocking" - what else needs to be said!

Sure think, not all of them so unreasonable. There are some guys who recognize their “mental change” and do the best to make it safe. The best of them do not get on the plane to jump on awfully high altitude with heavy backpack stuffed with two parachutes. They know that it is safe to jump from low, unmoving object. They know that two canopies introduce exhaustingly big number of options: which to pull? So they jump from very reliable, unmoving, low bridges, buildings and cliffs. With one canopy only. These ones are obviously less crazy and the other skydivers call them BASE jumpers - they are nuts too, but only basically nuts.

Yeah, and, of cause there are some guys who enjoys to see the normal people dropped from the plane. These are very smart and persuade the good citizens to do this, proving on the ground that there is nothing scary in that. "You even don't have to wear this heavy ugly backpack. I can do it for you. But put this harness on so my boss would not suspect anything." While in the plane, they sit behind the poor guy and, unexpectedly, grab his harness and tie up to his one. He get close... very close... to the guy or the girl. And I personally saw how they pushed the poor one to the aircraft exit in front of them, telling them: just cross your hands on your chest, there is nothing else you can do now... Yes, I was the one of the guys dropped out of plane that way. But this... hmm... close relationship doesn't last long - in 6-7 minutes they are on the ground, and giggling, seeing as normal people runs from them, screaming on their way. "They are excited!" they say. Yeah, right!

If the guy doesn't run away - here we go, he is another candidate for AFF (see what I wrote about it before). Oh, yeah, AFF is obviously for Awfully Freaked Fella - the student.

So, when you are going to marry a skydiver, don't even hope that he or she is going to be around you all the time. Sky and jumping will be the on the top of his/her list of priorities. And if you want to get to that list not far after sky, jumping, boogie, bonefire, beer, new container, try a wingsuit, new reserve, freeflying, freeflying jumpsuit, wind tunnel, night jump, audible alti, jump from balloon, big ways, CRW, hook turns, swooping, go to Florida to jump in winter, spend vacation on drop zone in New Zealand, high-altitude jumps, sleep sometimes, try weight, try that cool new canopy on boggie, jump from the cliff in grand canyon, dogs... then you have to become a skydiver too!

Wanna have him or her around more often? It is simple. Do RW with them!

Blue skies!

By Nikolay on 2009-10-01 | Last Modified on 2012-09-07

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