• Let me get this straight? You’re a human and unlike me cannot fly as you don’t have wings. Yet you are going to jump out of one of your aeroplanes at 25,000 feet without a parachute? And YOU have the effrontery to call ME a dumb animal?

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    The other day your Editor unintentionally annoyed one of the many kestrels hunting by walking directly under where he or she was hovering for the simple reason that he or she was hovering right over the footpath. The little bird of prey felt it necessary to shift his or her location. Your Editor walks that path frequently and the sight of these wonderful masters (and mistresses) of winged flight is always a pleasure.

    Being ridiculously anthropomorphic for a moment one can therefore wonder at the surprise and even complete disbelief were the little bird to hear of the exploits of a certain Mr Luke Aikins (below) from Kapowsin in the state of Washington, USA.Kapowsin is a villiage approximately 25 miles south-east of Tacoma in Pierce County, Washington, United States. The 2010 Census placed the population at 333.

    This is because yesterday the village of Kapowsin could have lost one of it’s 333 residents.

    You see Mr Atkins – for reasons known only to himself and the Almighty – decided that Saturday 30th July 2016 would be a jolly good day to jump out of an aeroplane at 25,000 feet without a parachute!

    Now this is not the first time this organ has reported upon cases of – and our lady readers will insist upon this, MEN doing seemingly ridiculous things from a great height. Doubtless British Gazette readers will recall the daring Herr Felix Baumgartner from Austria who was desirous of travelling at over Mach 1. For we ordinary mortals, were we to do this we would insist on that seemingly necessary accoutrement, a supersonic aircraft! But our Herr Baumgartner was not going to have any of that! No, the fearless Herr Baumgartner was going to rely on gravity instead! In order to achieve the speed necessary to exceed Mach 1, this meant a very great height! 120,000 feet in fact!

    Readers wishing to reprise themselves of this feat can visit: http://www.british-gazette.co.uk/2010/01/22/an-alternative-to-the-jumbo-jet-mr-miliband/
    But then let us return to the gentleman of the moment, Mr Aikins!

    Like the fearless Herr Baumgartner, Mr Aikins was going to rely on gravity. Unlike Herr Baumgartner our American friend had decided that parachutes were so last century and that a new method of preventing one from being splattered over the surface of the Earth be found!

    Our daring friend came to the conclusion that what was needed was a large net! His challenge of course was to make sure that he landed in the net for had he missed he would undoubtedly have ended up asking the Almighty how far out was he from the edge of the net!

    As it was we can report that our friend was successful. And to the very great relief of Mrs Aikins!

    Mr and Mrs Aikins are clearly a most extraordinary couple. It seems the novel idea of jumping out of an aeroplane sans parachute was not Mr Aikins idea but that of a couple of chaps in Hollywood! These fellows felt that such a “stunt” would attract an audience – made up of more than the passing funeral director!

    A dutiful husband, Mr Aikins duly informed his good lady of this proposal.

    “You won’t believe these guys,” Mr Aikins told Mrs Aikins, “’They want me to jump out [of an aeroplane] without a parachute.”

    To which Mrs Aikins replied, “’Oh, with a wingsuit?”

    To which Mr Aikins replied. “’No, they want me to do it with nothing.”

    Mr and Mrs Aikins then had a good laugh!

    One can only wonder what Mrs Aikins’s reaction was when her husband informed her of his plans! Whatever they were, Mr Aikins decided to record the jump for posterity. For those NOT of a nervous disposition, the Youtube video can be viewed below!British Gazette comment: When Mrs May discovers just how much money our Chinese friends are going to make from the Unfortunate Osborne’s “negotiation” vis-à-vis the financing of Hinkley C, one wonders if Mrs May will suggest to the Unfortunate Osborne that were he to emulate Mr Aikins’s feat over say Salisbury Plain, it would be a jolly good way of raising money for good causes! Like charities assisting those finding it difficult to pay their gas and electricity bills perhaps?