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Everything posted by Airman1270

  1. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Yes. You're saying pretty much the same thing I'm saying. Keep the workload simple, and returning after a layoff is not a problem. Much depends on one's level of accomplishment & experience. Jim Wallace could easily return after six months off and pull off a "simple" 20-way. Meanwhile the guy who'd made 50 jumps in three years would do just fine on a solo or a two-way. Cheers, Jon
  2. >In extreme curcumstances AAD's can save lives as well as kill people. Agreed. >Let the customer decide . . . The guy who takes the risks with his business and his home gets to decide who can risk what at his DZ. You can then decide whether you want to jump there or not. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ This brings up another related matter. This mind-set of blaming business owners for the conduct of their customers & employees is wrong and needs to be corrected. This has been discussed politically as "tort reform," "legal reform," etc. I see two ways to address this. On a personal level, accept any opportunity to serve on a jury, rather than try to get out of it. If it becomes obvious that the plaintiff is attempting to blame the "big corporation" for actions beyond its control, vote to acquit. (Example: If the heating/air serviceman rapes the housewife, HE is responsible, not the company for whom he works. If the pizza guy runs a red light & hits someone, HE is responsible, not the company...) Politically, vote for the people who share this concern and are willing to make an effort to do something about it. In today's climate, most of these people would be Republicans. The DZO has fulfilled his end of the agreement by providing a reasonably safe aircraft and a place to land. He never promised he would protect me from myself, and he shouldn't be dragged into court for failing to do something he never said he could do in the first place. Cheers, Jon
  3. >It is quite another to require formal retraining for an experienced >jumper returning after taking several months off That's one of those lessons that was written in blood. Currency is critical in this sport. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ No. This myth is bullshit. I've been jumping this way for longer than many people here have been in the sport and I speak with some authority on the subject. As long as the returning jumper keeps the workload simple it's no big deal. Stay away from the 40-way, use a more conservative canopy, avoid high winds, and you'll be fine. Anyone can do it. How many of the people who insist on these stupid rules have themselves gone months at a time between jumps? I may be mistaken, but it seems that most of these people are folks who practically live at the DZ every weekend. They can't remember the last time they went a month without jumping, Their comfort zone includes a level of hyper-currency that is only shared by others who spend as much time at the DZ as they do. This they define as the "norm," which they then attempt to impose on everyone else. I've read many incident reports in which these people screwed up big time. But I can't remember any such reports involving low-time and/or sporadic jumpers in which some other serious factor (ambitious plans, "downsizing," etc.) was not THE main cause of the accident. Cheers, Jon
  4. _______________________________________________ >It is perfectly safe to use older gear, jump without an AAD, and/or >only make a few jumps once in a while. It absolutely is not. Anyone of any age with any gear who thinks jumping is "perfectly safe" is deluded. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ All right, all right... "Safety" is relative. What I meant was that jumping sporadically with older gear and/or no AAD is no more dangerous than jumping frequently using the best gear available. Sigh. Cheers, Jon
  5. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Bill, you seem to be replying to someone else. Nobody has suggested that we do away with formal training for beginners, reserve parachutes, or anything else you mentioned. My point is that this element to which I referred has been imposing a series of ridiculous "guidelines" regarding currency, gear, etc. that goes way beyond basic common sense. This has driven up the cost of skydiving while doing nothing to make it safer. I've been doing this for almost 30 years. It is perfectly safe to use older gear, jump without an AAD, and/or only make a few jumps once in a while. As long as one operates within his experience & comfort zone there is nothing wrong with this. Experienced jumpers do not forget basic survival skills simply because they take a few months off. Nobody is saying it's okay for the guy returning after a long layoff to get on a 20-way or do a demo, but there's nothing wrong with him doing a small-way, nor is there anything wrong with him using an older rig (assuming he's already familiar with it.) This mind-set of hyper-regulation is killing the sport. It is one thing to require a FJC for beginners. It is quite another to require formal retraining for an experienced jumper returning after taking several months off, or refusing to service a rig for a customer because it is beyond "X" years old. I can't remember the last time I made 20 jumps in a year. Last year I only made seven. After doing mostly hop & pops for a couple of years I went last on a 5-way and flew like a pro. My accuracy skills are not quite as good as Hayhursts or Stearns', but I can just about nail a target every time, even after taking six months off. Yet according to the people to which I was referring, I should not be allowed on a DZ unless I pay for formal retraining and buy an AAD. This is stupid. That being said, I'm having a problem with this new definition of "freedom" as the right of a DZO to impose stupid restrictions on its customers. We're not arguing about their "right" to require AAD's, we're arguing about the need for such a rule in the first place. In extreme curcumstances AAD's can save lives as well as kill people. Let the customer decide, and stop creating an atmosphere where newcomers are taught to be afraid to jump without one. Cheers, Jon
  6. PRO CHOICE---- on AADs, They can save you, and they can kill you. Exactly. Pro choice. A DZO can choose to require AAD's or any other safety gear, and/or requirements such as turn size and wing loading. Their sandbox, their rules. You can choose not to jump there... _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ The problem with this argument is geography. If you're having a problem with a bowling league, there are many others nearby. Few of us have the luxury of a choice of several DZ's within a two-hour radius from home. When I read the incident reports I see the vast majority of serious accidents involve people who are very current and jump the best gear on the market. Many of these folks have AAD's. Yet there is a growing element in the sport that gets its panties in a wad over people who don't jump often, use older gear, and/or don't use an AAD. These people seem to enjoy imposing their personal preferences on the rest of us. A couple of years ago a woman was killed while escaping from a spinning aircraft. Her AAD fired as she was climbing out and the reserve became entangled with the tail. She would likely have survived if she had NOT been wearing an AAD. DZOs who mandate AAD's are hypocrites. Unless, of course, they ban those real small fast mains. What is the point of requiring an AAD (based on concern for their customers' "safety") yet allowing their customers to jump tiny little parachutes that must be flown JUST RIGHT in order to avoid serious injury or death? Cheers, Jon S.
  7. Bob Raeke. Taught me the FJC in Duanesburg NY a few times in '79 - '82 (kept getting weathered out.) JM'd my first jump, first freefall & several other student jumps & signed me off instruction. He had that perfect combination of "This is serious stuff" and "Jumping out of airplanes is fun." Never got to jump with him again after graduating. Damn shame. Cheers, Jon S.
  8. If you're as cautious & thoughtful about jumping as you are about arranging a business deal you've got a long skydiving career ahead of you. Cheers, Jon S.
  9. QuoteThis is Andy on The old guys account. Thinking of Lee all the time. We just had a good convo about him yesterday and tonight... _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ I thought about him too, thought the date sounded familiar. We mostly ran in different circles, but I did have the pleasure of doing a 2-way with him once, one of the few times I saw him do a fun jump w/o any camera stuff. Miss him. Miss all you guys. Cheers, Jon
  10. With previous girlfriends I was usually loyal. If I did cheat, is was only after she'd cheated first. (Every woman I've ever been serious with has cheated on me. I passed up some nice opportunities because I was too busy being faithful. Damn.) Married 19 years & haven't cheated yet, though I must admit in recent years it's because I haven't had the option. I have evidence she cheated early in the marriage. Even if she didn't, the fact remains she pushed me away years ago and recently decided to pursue divorce. Wonder if she'd get mad if I did spend some time w/ someone? She kinda forfeited her right to demand any further loyalty. Of course, I'd have to be retrained. Currency is overrated as far as skydiving is concerned, but... Cheers, Jon S.
  11. Airman1270

    smoke weed?

    ... _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Another fine reason to do away with drug testing altogether. The information revealed by these tests is irrelevant. Perhaps this should be addressed in another thread. Would this be considered SC material? Cheers, Jon
  12. Airman1270

    smoke weed?

    Participation runs from sporadic to none. Lifestyle changes. I still really like it, just don't spend much time running in those circles. Was a regular daily user from 1978 - 1983, then still participated regularly, in smaller doses, for several more years. During my heyday I worked late shifts & spent much time alone while friends & family went off to school or day jobs. Played a lot of guitar back then. Was unmotivated & unfocused in life 'til my mid-30's, but at least I'm a kick-ass guitar player so it wasn't a total waste of time. Cheers, Jon S.
  13. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Wanna borrow mine? I get grief every time I jump it. So far, though, never because of the color pattern. Why would a rainbow be controver... OH fella, I get it. Now back to your regularly scheduled Broadway show tunes. Cheers, Jon S.
  14. ...It would have been better to have a grandfather clause... _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ It would have been even better if these stupid rules were never imposed in the first place. So it's safer to force a visiting jumper to use borrowed gear? The whole premise is an absurd insult. How many of these DZ's allow their customers to fly those real fast tiny mains? The incident reports freguently involve people who are very current, jumping the best gear available. Many of these people use AAD's. Cheers, Jon S.
  15. People who practice other sins usually acknowledge that their behavior falls short of moral standards. They do not march in the street demanding that society discard moral standards in order to make them feel better about themselves. Homosexuality is the only sin I can think of whose practitioners routinely demand that we discard the moral authority that declares this behavior wrong, and calls us bigots for refusing to do so. Before we open that can of worms, consider the impact on society if we can no longer describe such things as lying, cheating, stealing, adultery, child abuse, etc. as "wrong." If there is no God, there are no moral absolutes. If there is animosity between gays and Christians, it has far more to do with the attitude of the gays. I've been attending church for 28 years and have never heard anyone express hatred toward the queer community. If these people want to make happy and have a dialogue, they can begin by refraining from describing disagreement as "hate." Cheers, Jon S.
  16. ...I also think that there should be a certain amount of time in freefall to even be able to get a coaches rating. What if a student that just received his A license does 70 hop n pops from 3k and then only does 5-10 jumps from altitude to brush up on what he needs to do on his check dive to get his rating.. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ One does not have to fly with the precision of a competition 4-way team to jump safely with others. If you're not a student, then by definition you have demonstrated basic survival skills (such as the ability to fly in proximity to others w/out posing a hazard.) Maybe you have 50 jumps and your flying is a bit sloppy, but that doesn't mean you're flopping around out of control, smashing into people nearby. Nor does it mean you're diving last on a five-way plummeting blindly toward the group. Both you and the newbie posess enough skill to use caution and keep from harming each other. Otherwise, you should never have been signed off instruction. Cheers, Jon
  17. ...well way before the 'rating' was even available i often found myself jumping with new to intermediate level jumpers... _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Amen. I used to "coach" newbies until USPA invented this stupid rating and told me I was no longer qualified to do something I'd been doing for years. Back then we didn't call it coaching, we called it "jumping with the new guy." I hate watching recent graduates do solos when they'd clearly like to get on a dive with other people, all because they don't have that "A" license yet. How many of these folks think nobody wants to jump with them? How many understand that there are plenty of capable people around who would gladly have them on the dive if USPA hadn't interfered by creating this atmosphere of hand-wringing & paranoia with this "coach" idiocy? One fond memory: 1994. A very nice lady went through the AFF course, graduating in seven or eight jumps. Her first & only non-student jump was a 2-way w/me. Her grin was priceless. She died several weeks later due to a medical issue. She'd become a close friend of us all in those few months. Cheers, Jon S.
  18. >If managment has an obligation to take seriously complaints about >harassment, what did they ignore MY complaint about the way I was being >harassed? Well, not being there, I don't know why. But if you presented yourself at all like you presented yourself here, then it would be pretty clear that you primarily wanted to get back at a "brain dead high school cunt" and make her management look stupid... _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ I did not use such words during our conversation, and even if I had it's irrelevant. I hadn't done anything wrong and was being treated like crap. This kind of treatment will provoke anger. I wasn't trying to "get back" at anyone, I was trying to figure out what the problem was in the first place. Doesn't there come a point where we're allowed to tell someone that their complaints are petty, that they need to lighten up and let the small stuff roll off their backs? Especially when there obviously wasn't anything wrong in the first place? After all, my harassment complaint is far more substantive than was hers, and you're telling me to ignore it and not make a fuss. Why can't a woman be held to the same standard? (And for the record, she didn't accuse me of "harassment." She said I "made her uncomfortable." Since when did humans earn the right not to be made "uncomfortable?" Who taught her to use those words? ...cough...Gloria Allred...) According to your logic I can complain about you for whatever trivial reason (I don't like your T-shirt, or the way you keep saying "Oh my God, " etc.) and managment is obligated to call you in for a conference and warn you to read my mind and avoid saying/doing anything I might not appreciate, no matter how petty. If you've had a lobotomy you probably would not be offended by this treatment, but if you're like the rest of us it would make you angry. Somehow I don't think this is what legislatures had in mind when they invented "sexual harassment" law, nor was this what the public had in mind when it gave consent to the creation of such laws. Cheers, Jon
  19. As a manager you MUST take seriously any complaint about sexual harassment, no matter what the sex of the person complaining... _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ There was no harassment, sexual or otherwise. (On my part.) If managment has an obligation to take seriously complaints about harassment, what did they ignore MY complaint about the way I was being harassed? And given the nature of the facts I presented, why are you so eager to find me guilty of something, rather than see this for what it was: An ignorant kid manipulated by left-wing culture, making an issue of an innocent, innocuous exchange? Cheers, Jon
  20. Ah, but you don't define the legal issue, there, Jon, the law does. And, in the context of discrimination law, what he'd be trying to convince them is that what you did - even if you claimed it was totally innocuous - was was wrong because of what your intent was. And then he'd use those words of yours (which are admissible) as evidence of your true intent. And then you'd have to look those dolts in their eyes and explain yourself. ("Well, see... I didn't mean "cunt" in the derogatory sense...") _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Andy: Go back and read my description of what happened, then point out where I did anything wrong. Shaking a woman's hand and kissing my own wrist does not fall into any conceivable category of "harassment." The only harassment that occurred that day was the way I was treated by managers who had been trained to assign automatic credibility to a woman, regardless of the facts. This is one reason I declined an invitation to enter managment training. I simply will not treat people this way. Cheers, Jon
  21. _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Hee hee. What did I say that isn't true? Of course, you have a point. I can imagine a lawyer trying to convince a carefully hand-picked jury of clueless dolts that, while I hadn't done anything wrong, I deserve to be found "guilty" because I used such words to describe the situation. Cheers, Jon
  22. We're losing the definition of the word. "Harassment" suggests a PATTERN of behavior. Doing/saying something once, no matter what, may be rude but it's not harassment. A company should have the right to hire & fire for whatever reason, without having to explain the decision to a judge. I've been in the workforce since 1970, if you count my days delivering Newsday in my Long Island community. I've always treated people with respect. Several years ago we had a 16 year-old girl work a shift at our store. I welcomed her, shook her hand & kissed my own wrist, in a parody of the classic "kiss her hand" greeting, then went about my business. Shortly afterward the night manager called me into the office to tell me that the girl had complained about me, saying I "made her uncomfortable." I learned that they had been trained to react to those words and assume I was guilty. I was stunned, asking what exactly was the problem. I said we should all talk and sort this out. They said "No! You can't talk to her!" I asked why. They couldn't answer, other than to say it was "company policy." It took awhile before I realized what the kid was complaining about in the first place. Unbelievable. If I had kissed HER hand it would have been a gesture of respect, but instead I kissed my own. No boundaries had been crossed. Who trained this kid to say those words in the first place? And why did nobody have the courage to speak some common sense to a brain dead high school cunt? As the conversation went on I told the manager that the way I was being treated amounted to harassment, that I was offended, that this was making me uncomfortable and that by treating me this way she was creating a hostile environment. At this point she didn't know what to do. This spawned a debate among two managers & a former manager, while the stupid kid was oblivious to the trouble she had caused. All because nobody had the guts/common sense to ask her "Why are you uncomfortable? What did he do?," give her a chance to articulate her concern, and explain that I hadn't done anything wrong in the first place and that she was being petty. Nobody gave a crap about my feelings. If their motive was to avoid a lawsuit, slandering a man's reputation was not the way to handle the situation. All of this can be avoided by employing some common sense. Ray M. has the right to fire a TI for any reason or no reason at all. There is no reason for a lawyer to get involved. "Discrimination" laws may be well intended, but they are eroding private property rights and should be reconsidered. Any woman worth her menstrual cycle knows how to deal with unwanted/inappropriate attention w/out whining to a supervisor. Also, the fact that the TI is gay is irrelevant. Cheers, Jon S.
  23. I had to smile recently when a young jumper noted that I wear my altimeter on my chest. Please tell me it's not the first time he's seen that. Good thing I was using the "new" rig. Not sure if he's ready to deal with the belly band. Cheers, Jon S. Happy anniversay to me - first jump AD 9-30-82.
  24. Bill, you're being way too flippant. Have you spent any time paying attention to the things that have been happening in the schools? Of course, you'll only find this stuff in information sources you consider "right wing." The New York Times, the Associated Press, CNN, etc. do not place much priority on reporting such things, and when they do they approach it from the perspective of the ignorant parents trying to "impose" something when in reality it is the left-wing government school system that is doing the imposing. We've discussed the origin-of-life issue before. You support a narrow one-sided approach, while I support exposing students to the truth (that is, that there are two basic theories, neither of which can be scientifically proven.) Yet in your twisted logic, you claim objectivity & fairness and accuse me of evil motives. You want the state to shove your secular-humanist religious theories down my kids' throats, yet will complain bitterly if your kids are exposed to ideas consistent with my religious views. You support a system that preaches the virtues of understanding each others' "cultures" yet at the same time demand that information regarding normal American Judeo-Christian culture be censored. If the schools did not spend so much time on matters of evolution, slavery, homosexuality, etc. we would not be fussing about whether the kids are spending enough time in the classroom. Cheers, Jon
  25. ...The USA has a shorter school year than just about any other developed country, and our achievement scores show it... _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ The problem is not the amount of time spent in class, but the content & presentation of the lessons. My 10th grade "social studies" class was a boring collection of word lists, names & dates, and a bunch of facts presented in a dry manner by a teacher who knew little more about this stuff than we did and obviously didn't have any real passion for helping us understand the material. We got passing grades but didn't learn much. In contrast, an English class presentation of Shakespeare stuff was taught by a guy who understood and enjoyed the subject & made it very interesting. My kids' journey through the public school system has been mostly a waste of time. Much emphasis is placed on non-academic matter, including but not limited to environmental evangelism, preaching about recycling, anti-tobacco & anti-gun dogma, etc. Add to this frequent trips to the auditorium for a vacuous succession of assemblies of questionable educational value, multi-cultural bullshit, and an atmosphere that does little to encourage academic excellence. And let's not forget how they waste the entire month of February immersed in a bunch of worthless discussions about slavery, in a manner designed to create racial animosity rather than impress upon the kids the genious of the Founders, who created a system of government which allowed future generations to take action to do away with this blemish in our history. The teacher "certification" process weeds out strong thinkers, creating instead an army of glassy-eyed touchy-feely types who respond more to emotion rather than intellect. (Watch what heppens when an experienced businessman offers to teach a business class. The teachers' unions are quick to find reasons not to allow this sort of thing. Never mind that this guy is more qualified to teach the class than most "real" teachers ever will be.) Last year I made a delivery to a local elementary school, and watched as one teacher gave gushing praise to two girls who had been sent out to bring trash to the dumpster. They had been told to return inside immediately if they saw a "stranger." On their way out they passed the heating & air guy working on the AC unit. They said "He's a stranger," dropped the bag, and ran. These officially certified teachers were teaching these kids to be irrational & paranoid. Such attitudes run rampant through faculty lounges all over the country. Frankly, the dirty little secret is that the left, which controls the schools, wants year-round schedules so as to minimize the amount of time children spend outside of their control & influence. Wanna improve the schools? Easy. Repeal compulsory attendance laws, and sit back & watch the schools fix themselves as they seek to provide a product customers will want to buy. Cheers, Jon S.