Defying Gravity: Land Divers, Roller Coasters, Gravity Bums, and the Human Obsession with Falling
Defying Gravity tells the astonishing story of how gravity pioneers transformed an ancient terror'he sensation of falling'nto the modern thrill that powers extreme sports, monstrous amusement rides, and a youth culture obsessed with "getting air." It's a hair-raising tour, with nineteenth-century parachutists plummeting to their deaths before thousands, British lords tumbling from Alpine peaks, Hollywood stuntmen dropping from biplanes to freight trains, drunken carousers outrunning police to make the world's first bungee jump, and X Games athletes such as stunt bike rider Mat Hoffman explaining their bone-breaking passion. Garrett Soden follows the evolutionary trail back to our acrobatic primate ancestors and delves deep into the psychology of sensation seekers. 12 illustrations. Originally published in hardcover under the title Falling.
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INTRODUCTION Birth of the Bungee Jump
The Gravity Century
CHAPTERS Trouble in the Theaters of Gravity
Sirens of Height
Fall of the Noble Daredevil m
Rebels Cults and Primates
Young Gods Bronzed with Sunburn
CHAPTER Wall Rats
Annie balloon Balmat barrel BASE jumping Beach became began bike Blondin body brain Bridge Brodie Brooklyn Bridge bungee jumping called century chute circus cliff climb climbers cord crowd dangerous Dangerous Sports Club daredevils death dive drop ESPN face Farini feel fell flip flying Games Garnerin Golden Gate Bridge gravity hero ground hanging hard high-sensation seekers human hundred feet idea invented jumpers knew Kurz land later leap legs looked metaphor Mike miles an hour mountain movie nearly Niagara parachute parachutists parks Patch Pentecost Islanders performers pitons pole primates pulled pushed quoted ride riders risk rock roller coaster rope route Royal Robbins Sam Patch skateboarders skydiving slope spin stop stunt suicide Superman surfboard surfers surfing there's things thought thousand feet thrill Tony took trapeze trees trick turned vert ramp walk wall Wallenda wave Whymper wire wirewalkers X Games