JT Airlines – We’re a Great Way to Fall

Today is the day that successful people will tell you that they failed their A-levels and that, in spite of this, they have still become successful people.

Stories like this are great. They remind us that we don’t need to try hard for success. In fact, I think sooner or later we’ll probably realise that we don’t need A-levels or GCSEs at all and we can all just go boldly into the world and be hugely successful without education. Every single one of us.

So, on this day of A-level results, why don’t you celebrate whatever your results are. Because, pass or fail, you’ll probably be successful – and famous – anyway. And what’s the best way to celebrate? A holiday of course.

Yes, I know that they are expensive, but I’ve got an idea to make them cheaper: we cut out the landing. Not only will this save fuel and time, it will also save money on all the airport fees. Also, without landings we can just drop you off at your final destination, so you won’t need to transfer from the airport. Yes, with JT Airlines you can fly really cheaply because we’ll just throw you out of the plane directly above your hotel.

I know what you are thinking: “won’t the extra cost of parachutes just make up the expense anyway?” The answer is: NO – we won’t be using parachutes.

Oh, you think that might be dangerous? I beg to differ. Vesna Vulović would too.

You see, Vesna was a flight attendant for JAT Yugoslav Airlines. And on January 26th 1972, she was on flight 367 which tragically exploded over the village of Srbská Kamenice, in (the former) Czechoslovakia. A terrible tragedy indeed, but not entirely so for Vesna. She survived the reported fall of 33,333 ft (10,160 metres). Without a parachute.

But Vesna isn’t the only person to survive a great fall from an aircraft. Former Soviet Airforce lieutenant  Ivan Chisov survived a 23,000 ft fall; during World War II, American airman Alan Magee fell 22,000 ft from his B-17 Flying Fortress and survived, whilst RAF gunner Nicholas Alkemade just suffered a sprained leg from his 18,000 ft fall; and German biologist Juliane Koepcke survived a 10,000 ft fall from a commercial airliner.

So you can see – lots of people have successfully survived falls from 10,000 ft and above. So there’s really nothing to worry about.

My new airline will take away a lot of the expense from holidays to destinations near and far with this innovative approach. Now I just need to get the advertising right. I’m thinking maybe a picture of Vesna Vulović with the quote:

“If you’re worried about falling from a plane, be cheered by the fact that I fell 33,000 ft. And I’m currently sitting in a villa in St Tropez.”

Wait… what do you mean that’s terrible advice?

12 thoughts on “JT Airlines – We’re a Great Way to Fall”

  1. I tend to counter that with ‘Yes, you probably can still get to where you want to be without good GCSEs/A Levels, but you’ll have to work much harder to get there and it will take longer.”

  2. Great stuff, though just a little mean perhaps on Thursday when the pain of poor results was still so raw for many students!

    In edition to Clarkson’s daft and boastful offering, there were plenty of other people on Twitter last week trying to offer some succour to disappointed youngsters. For instance, ‘Jack of Kent’ (if you don’t follow, you really should) encouraged lawyers to share their success stories despite having ‘poor’ A Level results.

    The important message is that hard work and resilience over the long term can trump one set of exams not going quite as well as they might have done. Tom Sherrington gets this right on his blog.

    Now, where can I buy a ticket for JT Air?

  3. The section on people who fell ridiculous heights was always my favourite part of the Guinness Book of Records. It’s a good corrective for those who argue by anecdote (“falling out of a plane never did me any harm”) or those who think laws should only address direct harm rather than actions likely to cause harm (“yes, I pushed somebody out of a plane, but they were fine, so why am I in trouble now? This was a victimless crime.”).

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