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Cliff Diving June 4, 2010

Posted by eric22222 in General.
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SPLASH.

Eric peered over the edge of the cliff and took a deep breath. Numbers began running through his head.

Second degree integral… initial velocity of zero… time equals two and acceleration is roughly thirty-two feet per second squared…

“Come on down,” Brad called from the lake below.

Eric still had no idea why he had jumped from this very cliff minutes earlier. Especially in lieu of the recent calculations.

“64 feet,” he yelled down.

“What?”

“It’s a 64-foot drop from here to the water. I’ll just take the trail down this time.”

Granted, the seconds of free fall he had just experienced were exhilarating. Probably one of the most exciting moments of his life. However, it did make him more likely to die in a rather gruesome manner, so he passed it up this time. That was the trouble with logic. It always came to the logically best decision.

There is nothing particularly wrong with fear. That feeling of uneasiness found when you’re within three feet of a three hundred-foot drop is quite natural. Genetics have a lot to do with it. People without that aversion just end up dying before they breed.

Eric smacked at a horsefly that had been getting too close for comfort. He climbed down the rocky steps that allowed for easy access into the water. Kicking off, he drifted over to see Brad already halfway back up the cliff.

“I take it you’ve climbed these rocks quite a bit by now.”

“Yeah, there’s a few different ways to get up around here.” He grabbed a jutting rock that looked to be out of reach. Eric swam closer and searched for a rock to grip.

Going up was simple. Natural selection never had anything to do with ascents, as people don’t die from climbing things. They die from being bad at climbing things.

What’s more, you never had to worry about perspective tricks. When climbing, you always feel like you’re almost to the top. Once at the top, the bottom always feels uncomfortably distant.

Eric continued upwards where ever he could. His shoes, now soaking wet, protected his feet, though they provided little traction.

Almost to the top. Eric had crawled diagonally along a large crack in the stone which provided plenty of natural foot holds. And while this gave him a better position vertically, he was drifting far to the left of any good rocks.

However…

Perhaps just out of reach, a small tree grew awkwardly from the earth. The thin trunk came out almost horizontally. He could grab it and carry through with his momentum, grabbing the rocks beyond. The problem was that he’d be trusting most of his weight to a poor excuse for vegetation.

He eyed the water and rocks below. He eyed Brad, who was already climbing up to where the jumping began. His logical mind must have burned out from the adrenaline. He sprung for the tree.

Got it.

And… swing…

Grab the rock, and…

And what comes next? Eric found himself with one hand on a twig, and one on a small outcrop of stone. Both legs had wound up far ahead of him.

Bypassing the logic once again, he began lifting his legs over his right hand, onto the outcrop. He was now in a sort of hammock posture, though his head was dangling over a 30-foot drop. He pulled himself around and over the limbs of the tree. Somehow, he ended up completely on the outcrop.

The remaining half of the climb was practically a trail. Within a few seconds, he completed the climb. He stood triumphantly, looking out once more over the lake as Brad took a standing leap.

SPLASH.

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