Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Thoughts About Planes

Planes aren’t so bad really… when they’re taxiing on the runway.  When they’re in the air, they are a very scary place for this simple midwestern boy.  
Oddly the two parts of flying that most people don’t like—the takeoff and landing—were the two parts of the trip that were the least stressful, relatively speaking.  Sure, there was a lot of stress crammed into those few minutes of each, but the stretching anxiety that was present the entire time the plane was in the air was almost worse… no, it actually was worse.

I’ve never liked heights.  I like having my feet firmly planted on something that isn’t going to suddenly disappear from underneath them or plummet thousands of feet to my most certain death or dismemberment.  When I was younger the ferris wheel used to creep me out more than zombies, the boogey man, and having to shower after gym class all combined together.

Being so high in the air was an amazing experience for most, but for me all I could think about was how many of my bones would be shattered when my pudgy body hit the ground after the seat I was in fell from the apex of the ferris wheel’s motion.  Usually I guessed 14… maybe more if I landed on my stomach (that would crack a lot of ribs).

With flying it’s supposed to be different.  It’s the safest form of travel according to most studies (although I think they forgot to look at walking as a viable travel method because I know that is way safer).  Throw all the statistics at me you want that shows how many less accidents there are with flight in comparison to driving and I’ll throw the one stat back at you that really scares me—the percentage of deaths in a plane accident in comparison to a car crash.

It’s almost a given that at some point you’ll get into a fender bender. No biggie.  It’s also a given that you probably won’t be in a plane crash.  Cool.  What sucks, though, is that if you do get into a plane crash you’re basically corpsified.  There are very few injuries in plane crashes—it’s usually just massive amounts of death, dying, painful death, and death by fireball or explosion.  Get into a car crash and you might break a bone or something at most a lot of the time.

So anyways, I didn’t like flying for two reasons: if the plane were to crash, my funeral would be a lot sooner than the May 12th, 2084 date I had planned and I hate heights.

Well, those two along with not knowing if the pilot was totally sauced while he was flying or not.  

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