10 Things I Did This Afternoon Instead Of A 23-Mile Free Fall Like Felix Baumgartner
Felix Baumgartner is having a pretty normal Sunday. He just jumped out of a capsule 23 miles above the surface of the earth with zero mechanical assistance aside from a fancy space suit, and free fell for over four minutes from THE STRATOSPHERE. You know, that layer of the earth's atmosphere that we don't actually live in. We learned about it in school, but WE DON'T JUMP FROM THERE. He was expected to break the speed of sound, although we'll have to wait a while to find out if that happened. What we do know is that he just set a new world record for highest jump, but not for longest free-fall, which was set by Joseph Kittinger in 1960. How is it possible that Felix jumped from a higher place but had a shorter freefall? WELL. The air is so thing way up in space that he was going like…700 miles per hour, which significantly cuts into your freefall time. At least in my experience. So like I said. Totally normal weekend afternoon for Felix.
I myself was considering trying to break the sound barrier with my own body, or to set a record for longest freefall, but I couldn't decide between those two options, so instead I decided to do neither. Here are ten things I did instead, which are similar to both of those things:
- Woke up late. Setting a world record for laziest human.
- Didn't eat breakfast. Neither did Felix Baumgartner, probably, because he's been in a suit all day. So far our days are really similar.
- Took a shower. Because I love my country.
- Put on clothes. To insulate me from the damaging cold of the troposphere. Similar to the stratosphere, where Felix was hanging out.
- Watched Saturday Night Live. Which is also in freefall. Ayoooo!
- Made a poop. I bet Felix did that, too. We'll find out when we take off his suit.
- Didn't do dishes. I don't have a good reason for this one.
- Listened to music. Aka experimented with the speed of sound.
- Watched Felix jump out of a space pod 23 miles above the ground. Meta.
- Wished I was cooler. No explanation necessary.