Welcome to the
Fantastic World of Colin Jacobson

Fear of flying
Chapter 5


No matter how sophisticated aeroplanes become, there remains something fundamentally absurd about air travel. Human beings take nine months to develop in the womb, and another year or so to stagger around on unsteady legs, and yet have the temerity to try to mimic birds, forcing huge ugly metal creatures into the skies at vast expense.

Little wonder, then, that the history of aviation throws up some suitably ridiculous moments, even if they have a certain poetic resonance.

Most of us, if we're sensible, remain in awe of this massive affront to gravitational rules and regulations. Among cultures which have yet to lose their sense of wonder,thereis a tendency to burst into spontaneous applause when a plane makes a successful landing. This is surely a form of tacit recognition that flying is all a big joke really, and none of us is quite sure how long we will get away with it.

Colin Jacobson