Robert Pecnik, founder of Phoenix-Fly, recently posted some thoughts on life and death (especially deaths) within the wingsuit (WS) BASE community. A veteran of the sport, Robert is not known for mincing words when he has something to say. He hits on many points, but sums it up early on to say:
In reality, it is very simple: as more and more people are getting involved in to flying near terrain, more of them will die.
The post prompted quite a lot of discussion. Some agree with Robert, others point out what they feel are contributing factors – in particular focusing on recent fatalities. Robert gave us permission to share his thoughts below. Read on – and see what you think.
Recently, few WS fatalities happened, and of course immediate reaction of WS BASE society came out, where people ended up worrying about the future, and more or less begging people to take it slow, step back, blah, blah, blah… Well, that of course is a pure fairy-tale.
In reality, it is very simple, as more and more people are getting involved in to flying near terrain, more of them will die.
Flying has some ”magic”, and one of the basic rules in flying is that no one can stay up in the air indefinitely.
Another rule is that NO ONE has so far won the game against the hard deck (OK, I accept the funny guy from Horner pub).
Keeping that in mind, think about it next time you are approaching the ground.
Experienced people often advise to get more skydives, get ready, prepare yourself etc… Sure, it is good to make 1000 skydives prior to going to Ebola valley, to impress yourself, your family, mom & dad especially, but these 1000 skydives often is nothing, as they are mostly repetition jumps, all the same… 90% of those who are preparing for their first, or second season in Ebola valley, has no clue what should they do and how to prepare…
It is more important to prepare yourself mentally, and get yourself some true and honest answers, like how far I wanna go, or what will harvesting half of the Switzerland is gonna mean to me after all? …or how many likes I’m gonna get when I’m gonna to be sent to my mom and dad with legs forward or in the ash tray looking bowl?? Will I impress them than as well?
I am not going to explain what one needs to do in order to fly safe and look cool, as I expect from people that they are mature enough to understand what WS flying actually is, but that seems haven’t happened yet..
Therefore here it is again…
WS is actually type of flying which can be compared to flying that an old chicken can do, when you throw her from the top of the barn or chicken house roof. It is barley moving forward, and it is ALWAYS going down flying. It is flying with so little opportunity to get the spare energy that it almost strange to call that flying.
Now keep this in mind when you are planning next adventure which will impress half of the Milky way, and possibly Donald Trump and Putin together.
Also, keep in mind that no one gives the shit how fast, how close and how awesomely epic rad and splendid you look when you gonna stick your nose in to the ground, and crash , all filmed by rhino GoProstitute camera or awesome latest red/black epic/magic Sony slowmo cameras.
Your funeral will be slow enough to be remembered, as just another one who lost the fight against the ground.
Remember to shut up and spare yourself from commenting other people when they do stupid stuff, as there is very high chance that you will repeat just the same shit you just saw in order to impress an idiot before you, and especially the one who is jumping after you. This is the ”magic” called BASE jumping! Why be smart and pussy, when you can be rad and epically stupid.
Remember to choose the most stupid and fun looking gang as this, and only this, is the only insurance left that you can possibly find in order to survive your next adventure. Don choose the ordinary silent, no camera interested people, as this is pure guaranty that you will not look cool.
Don’t forget to scream after every jump as this way you just reminding yourself that you have successfully survived another jump. Scream as long as you can, finally, only you know why you scream! It is miracle that you survived again… Those funny ordinary people who are walking on trails and living their shitty lives think that you are idiot anyway, so by screaming you only scare animals, so no big deal as even they think you are moron, and even they know you’ll scream until you are dead.
Don’t forget to take a lot of pictures, as this will be the only proof that you were here on earth before you depart to universe with the mighty WS.
You can do all of that… Or take your progress in to your hands, and use your brain to think, and listen those who can really explain you why is WS BASE is cool and so special, but not so special to be wort dying for.
Disclamer – I do WS BASE as well.
Want to hear more thoughts from Robert Pecnik? Then check out this video interview from 2011, when Macca Macdonald caught this elusive bird in front of a camera, with some questions.