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10.01.2012
YOM KIPPUR
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Life & Family

Certifiably Out of my Mind

If you were at Mountain this past weekend you have certifiable confirmation that I am out of my mind. No,…

post by Samantha

If you were at Mountain this past weekend you have certifiable confirmation that I am out of my mind. No, I haven’t begun cheering for the Ravens. If there was previously any doubt about this, it is now erased. Here’s why: recently I got into a plane, rode it to 10,000 feet, opened the door, and jumped out.

Here’s what I think about the whole thing:

  • It was fun. And by fun, I mean fun in the same way that it would be fun to have someone put a vacuum hose down your throat and suck your stomach into your throat.
  • You really hope your chute opens. They tell you it “always” does. Except you know “always” means “almost always.” So it’s like walking up to a sleeping alligator and confidently thump it on the nose because “he almost never wakes up.”
  • It was an adventure. And by adventure, I mean adventure in the same way that it is an adventure to walk up to a sleeping alligator and thump it on the nose because, “he almost never wakes up.”
  • Don, the guy who strapped himself to my back, is a bit nuts. He randomly belts out loud, wicked laughter, like a maniacal inventor would do just before adding the final potion to a concoction that will wipe out civilization. As you’re weighing the sanity of jumping out of a plane, it is not exactly comforting to see Don throwing his head back, cackling like that.

Imagine 4 guys scrunching into a bathtub and you pretty much get the picture of what it felt like inside the plane. Except the bathtub was flying. Nobody even offered me a beverage. I could recline a little bit, but since I was sitting on the floor between Don, my new best friend’s legs, that didn’t seem quite right. When the engine wouldn’t start, the pilot joked that the rubber band wasn’t working and he had to get out and re-wind up the propeller. Not funny. Once we got to 10,000 feet, Don somehow managed to wrestle me toward the door, we swung our feet out onto a platform the size of my 5th grade lunch box, teetered momentarily somehow, and then plunged downward. Downward except for my stomach, which stayed pretty much where it was, upward. Which felt “fun” (see above).

Soon we were flying and my arms were out – every person’s fantasy – like those dreams I’ve had where I’m zooming through my old neighborhood. Except there was a guy named Don on my back.

Then he pulled the cord, which jerked us upward so hard my eyes rolled all around like I’d just been sucker punched in the gut by a Ray Lewis. My stomach was apparently still coming down and this gave us a chance to go back up and retrieve it.

Then all went quiet and we floated peacefully down in the most incredibly serene few moments. The scenery was breathtaking, the experience surreal, Don’s laughter loud.

Somehow Don was able to video the whole thing. Strap yourself to your chair and come along for an out of your mind ride:

One more thing: I would not have done this alone. A couple of my good buddies, Chuck and Danny, made me do it. Wasn’t my idea. But I am really glad I did. And I wanted to do it for a long time.

That’s how it is with being WEIRD. It’s easier to do together.

Following Jesus is weird. And we need each other to do it. But if we egg each other on, we can step outside normal and change your life … and the world.

3 comments.

3 thoughts on “Certifiably Out of my Mind

  1. Ben, I went skydiving with my son for his “Graduation from High School” present. It was amazing! What I kept thinking in the moments before the dive was “this is trust…putting my life completely in the hands (harness?) of someone else.” When you’re in that position you know you have absolutely NO control. Hats off to you!

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