open Cuando or media presents storytime with Paul Door. In each episode, you'll receive a short adrenaline shot of a story straight to the mind, heart or sometimes the funny bone wherever that is located. On Stay tuned after the story for Paul's picks, where I indulge you with something I'm reading, watching or listening to this week's story Sky diving recorded live off the floor at stories we don't wait Hanging out. The door of the ratty plane plane was held together by duct tape. Heavy clouds blocked in my view of the earth, which was 10,000 ft below. Did you know that when a human being jumps out of an airplane, they travel upwards of 120 MPH? What kind of damage occurs to a person's body when it hurdles 120 MPH and slams into the earth 10,000 ft below? The wind whistled loudly. This was not a good idea in the history of ideas. This was the worst. My instructor, the tandem master, nudged me and I had a moment of clarity. I was sure I was going to die. E blame this all on my friend Jim. It wasn't his fault that he turned 30 but it was his fault that he wanted me to go skydiving with him to celebrate 2030 e. We made the paddock late one night in a bar. Of course, the copious amounts of alcohol might have had something to do with my enthusiastic commitment laying in bed the next morning, hungover the alcohol fueled bravery of the previous evening had evaporated, and I tried. I tried to think of all the ways to get out of this with death in the air became very annoying. We had a two week deadline before jumping, and I let everyone know this repeatedly, Uh, telling friends about my death became an enjoyable pastime. Thing is the last Saturday of my life, I said, This'll is the last time I would eat at this restaurant. I reminded them Thing is the last time I will see you. Besides, besides annoying my friends, my other pastime became thinking about all the ways that I was going to die. Parachute failing to open a parachute opening but having holes in it, lightning striking me in mid air. But chances where I've done a very boring way, say the plane crashing before we even got the opportunity to jump. So we arrived at the skydiving site, which is out in the country surrounded by farmers fields. A large barn operated at the office beside the Barnes had a lot of trailers. Lots of young people with long hair and beards and vintage clothing mulled around in small groups, drinking coffee out of dented tin cups and avoiding eye contact with us skydiving virgins. Ah, young woman took us for a tour of the place. In the back of the barn. Rows of parachutes lined the floor. People concentrated on meticulously folding these parachutes. All of the instructors rolled up random parachutes and always use different ones when jumping. They did not know who's were, who's so that everyone would give 100% of the rolling efforts to each individual individual parachute 100% of the time. But what was? But what if someone was having a bad day or was hungover? This was not something you could do at 75% even at 99.9%. To me, this was a communal level of responsibility I'd never seen before, and simply didn't trust. I thought this was insane. The final stop on the tour was the audiovisual room, uncomfortable multicolored plastic chair set in front of an old television and VCR. I hope they're skydiving. Equipment was more up to date than their audiovisual equipment. The safety video must have been about circa 1982. Hosts had badly cropped hair and a thick Burt Reynolds mustache. You're holding your lives in your hands, Burt said. The danger of death is all around you. Hey, talked about all the ways we could die, and I was right. As he went through lightning cables, parachutes not opening, he signed off by saying, I'll never forget this. This could be the last stop on the train of life. After the safety video, we went for our training, but the word training was up for interpretation. Way were a tandem jumping the type where you jump with an instructor. You're attached to the tandem master via harness system. Bird explained to us that you need no prior jumping. Experience is the tandem Master is responsible for overseeing that. Everything goes according to plan. The Tandem master has hundreds, if not thousands, of jumps under his or her belt. My tandem master was a tall, gangly fellow with long, scraggly hair and curly Q beard. He wore an old T shirt with a fading band logo, frayed, cut off jean shorts, and he was barefoot. His name was Thumper e gonna repeat that his name was Thumper and he was the man that held my life in his hands. So Thumper let us out of the barn to a makeshift replica door of the airplane. The training took five minutes. Standing in the hull of the fake plane, Thumper instructed me to place 1 ft on the platform just outside of the door, and next I was to cross my arms in front of my chest. One. You bend forward to you rock backwards, and three, you fall out and under the plane. If you jump out, the force of the wind might thrust you backwards, smashing you into the plane, rendering you unconscious and most likely following following to your death. Bert failed to mention that point thing, and that's it, some per said. What do you mean? That's it? I asked Thumper. Pause, looked over to my friend Jim and said, Look, we have some time. There's a town about a 10 minute drive away. Maybe you could take your friend here and get a drink, you know, take the edge off. So I said, Listen here, thumper. That's your real name. Excuse me if I'm a little nervous if I'm displaying a small amount of anxiety, E would not say I'm afraid of heights. I have no problem riding up long escalators E or being on the top floor of a high building on. I don't even really get nervous when flying. However, I do not jump off that escalator when I reached the top or jump off that high building. And I've certainly never felt compelled to jump out of a plane until about two weeks ago. Yes, these things contained the illusion of safety. Yes, I realized that I could get hit by a bus crossing the street tomorrow, but I would imagine the percentage of dying when you actively and voluntarily jumping out of an airplane is much higher than being hit by a bus crossing the streets more. Yes, dumper. I'm scared. I'm sorry that my fear is showing. I fear that I attempted to cover up the past two weeks with my obsession over how I was going to die. But let's look at this showing. I'm paying you a pretty substantial fees so you can show me safety videos that are probably not regulated or official in any way way trained for a full full five minutes. I mean, it would have been nice to have a little bit more information, say, maybe seven or eight minutes. I'm introduced to my tandem master, and you're named after a fictitious rabbit from the 1942 Walt Disney movies wearing any shoes E. I'm supposed to trust you with my life, and now you're ridiculing May because my hands are a bit shaky because my voice is cracking bit and your suggestion to quell this fear is to put alcohol into my system way, fly 10,000 ft into the air, jump back down, falling at speeds of 120 MPH. Well, excuse me for being a bit scared off course. I didn't say any justice number. The plane, if you could call it a plane, appeared as a wobbling speck in the sky. Theo nly evidence it was a plane because it was somehow airborne waited for it to land. Thumper wasn't happy with the weather system coming from the in from the east. He put his hand to his brow and sniffed. The air narrowed his eyes. The overcast clouds approaching. E don't look like the look of those clouds, he said. On the plus side, if they stay, it means we get to go higher. Theme plane bounced off the ground a few times before landing and rolling towards us on what appeared to be a flat tire. It was a holiday prop plane with just enough room for the pilot, Jim, myself and our two tandem masters rips and cracks were covered with framed duct tape. The plane felt like it was coming apart at the seams. Now that the plane was on the ground, I wondered how it was gonna get back in the air. Jim and his partner were up front by the pilot, Thumper and I in the back. Thumper was relaxed and has cut off, sprawled his long legs out. He opened a compartment, closed up with duct tape and pulled out a book, The Tower teaching by La Zoo E. Guess he was also a philosopher. We climbed the 10,000 ft slowly after breaking through the clouds Thumb promotions for me. So hook in. I sat back in his lap and he put his arms around thing i e wanted to stay there thing inside this ratty plane 10,000 ft in the air, in the arms of a grown man eating supper felt safe and it felt war. Jim and I had a deal since this whole thing was his idea. He had to jump first, and it was time to jump. So Jim got into position. His hand to master gave not to the pilot, and he opened the small door. Sound was like being inside a turbine engine. Jim looked at me. There was nothing left to say. He got into position, hands on his chest when he bent forward to Iraq backwards three. And then he just disappeared. You know the scenes from a movie when the plane rips open in mid air and passengers get violently sucked out and die terrible deaths e exactly what it looks like. E blinked and Jim was gone. So Thumper tapped me on the shoulder. E snapped out of my Hayes and the emotion towards the door. E shook my head. He nodded and I shook and he nodded. Any kind of pushed me towards the door. E put my training. E was supposed to put 1 ft on the platform outside the door on cross my arms in front of my chest staring down to 10,000 ft. That's the most vulnerable thing that you could possibly dio. Instead, I kind of laid back and I put my feet against the door in my hands on a thumper kind of kicked me in the place on He pried my hands from the door and he forced them in front of my chest. I looked down and I went one and I wrote back to And then I fell out of the plane. The only thing that I got was the certificate that Thumper signed with a little happy faces. Thank you. I do. Mm hmm.