All around the world, people’s eyes were glued to their television set this evening. There, a man spoke, declaring the importance of following one’s dreams. He spoke about the time he had spent pursuing his biggest goal in life and how you can do anything you want if you work hard enough. It was very inspirational.
Oh, and the guy was on a rope halfway across Niagara Falls.
For the last two years, Nik Wallenda has spent time lobbying for the chance to walk across Niagara Falls on a tightrope. Since this has been illegal for more than a century, he spent time convincing the United States AND Canada that he was not a terrorist threat, but rather a crazy man who does not fully grasp the concept of falling to death.
Then, Wallenda had his brother-in-law, a NASA scientist figure out how this entire walk should go down. This is a smart idea because one really should not just wing it when they are performing death-defying stunts. If you can get help from a genius scientist, that is a plus.
Two years of this lead up to this evening when Nik stepped onto that wire and began walking. He had pursued his dream and finally was being given the shot to cross into a foreign country via tightrope. Our dreams are achievable.
Also, apparently our dreams are insane.
I, for one, know that I would never be able to walk across Niagara Falls. It does not matter how much I dream of it. I know my limitations. There are a few reasons I would never even attempt this, dream or not.
- I would absolutely fall. I cannot stand on one foot for any real period of time. I stood on a gymnastic balance beam one time and almost fell off. If I were expected to stand on a wire for more than three seconds, it’s over. Since the Grand Canyon takes far longer than three seconds to walk across, I do not feel this is too doable.
- I do not care for heights. To walk across Niagara Falls, you must be very high. If there was a way to put a guard rail up, I might be able to do it. I would need the NASA scientists to work a bit longer for that to happen.
- I hate wet socks. Niagara Falls sends a great deal of water into the air. Without a doubt, some would get into my shoes. Halfway through, I would want to change socks. I would be paranoid that I was getting trench foot from my socks. Bright side is I would probably forget about the height because I would be so unhappy about my sock condition.
- While I hate wet socks, I hate getting my glasses wet even more. I would not be able to see and would probably just step right off of the wire.
- I do not have a passport. I would get over to the other side and be sent right back. Plus, I get very nervous when customs officials ask questions, so they would probably assume I was smuggling drugs.
- I do not care for dying. I mean, I have never died, so I do not really know what it is like. The main thing I know about dying is that after the dying, you are dead. I like to avoid being dead, so if I were to fall to my death, I would be undoing 25 years of the hard work I have put in trying to stay alive. That is far from ideal and I do not feel like I would want to risk ending my “years alive” streak like that.
- My attention span is roughly 3 seconds. That means that I would constantly find my mind drifting to things like whether I could get free food if I told a restaurant I walked across Niagara Falls or how much a vanity plate that said “FALLS XER” would cost. Then I would remember that I was twenty stories from a rocky death balancing on a rope and I would panic for a second. I would probably die, and you know how I feel about that. (If you don’t know, you weren’t paying attention. Go back to number six and READ CLOSELY this time. Stop being a slacker.)
- I am not insane. You would have to be to try this.
- Daredevil set for historic tightrope walk across the Niagara Falls (itv.com)
- Will Wallenda unhook the tether? (buffalonews.com)