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Friday, October 20, 2017

15,000 feet of despair

by lifedesign (writer), Los Angeles, September 29, 2006

....And then all of a sudden a feeling of peace came over me. That invisible gun that had been pointing at my head appeared to be gone. "Please fasten the oxygen masks above your head to your face", the ominous voice said. I could hear the other passengers sobbing, crying and praying. Their mortality was apparent now. No more fast cars or TV game shows to take our attention away from the obvious. It had always been like this; a jetliner plunging into the ocean at 600 Miles per hour just made it cynically obvious.
This flight was not very crowded so I had a row to myself. I didn't have anyone to share my life with, so I may as well carry that pattern to my death. A pregnant woman was in the middle row a few aisles in front of me. I don't know why but I tell her to take the three seats I'm hogging up. It doesn't matter to me anymore, if I could just make this woman comfortable for the last seconds of her life, I'd be glad at having done something worthwhile in my life.
For the most part, people who survive these tragedies will tell you that their whole lives flashed before them. That the meaning of life became transparent. That in those few seconds you make peace with your ghosts and with the world you are leaving. Let me tell you, this is complete gibberish, what some may call a poetic license to spruce up a story. The truth is, you really don't think of anything. All you keep telling yourself is how much you don't want to die. When you are plunging to your death from 35,000 feet, everything is an ideology. Love, hate, sorrow; these are all mechanisms for situations unlike this one.
As the oxygen masks dropped, I was really hoping for some prankster to have replaced the oxygen with nitrous oxide. I really did. I fastened the mask and with the rush of oxygen, I felt I could fly. I felt that all these people around me were relying on me and my miracles to save them. In a situation like this, it's not much fun to be part of the clergy. People who called you child molester and brain washer a few hours ago were now kissing your hand to make sure they got a ticket to pass the pearly gates. At times like these, it's extremely easy to see how man has become consumed with power.
"We're at 15,000 feet.....please make sure your seat belts are fastened.", The co-pilot uttered. Wow, that's really going to help. You might as well tell these people that life insurance pays triple if you die in a plane accident, and we might as well believe this is good for us.
"5,000 feet....may God help us,"...the last communication I remember. Those are the last words I remember hearing before we hit the ocean.
On impact, a plane is designed to break apart in certain places. This is what they call fracture points. Well, I think I must have been sitting in one of them because all I remember is silence. A few seconds that redefine your life. This is the only time I have felt the pause button in my life being pressed. When the play button is pressed, the plane is above water and I hear helicopters in the distance.
I feel cold. I can't really move my torso. I don't even want to bother looking. It's all semantics. These are all just incidental happenings in the stream of consciousness that was my life.
Just as I realize I don't feel anything anymore I hear a baby crying....I'm glad I gave her that seat. Because what I hear isn't just crying, but it's all the voices in the universe thanking me for allowing the process of life to continue. And I'm happy ...maybe for the third or fourth time in my adult life, I am truly happy. I've been searching for this feeling all my life....something always told me that I would find it here.....


About the Writer

lifedesign is a writer for BrooWaha. For more information, visit the writer's website.
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1 comments on 15,000 feet of despair

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By Annonymous on September 29, 2006 at 05:31 pm
Pretty good writing. But it's not really a newspaper article, is it?
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