Parlor Spider...Step In, Little Fly

Insightful thoughts and/or rants from atop the soapbox from one who wishes to share the "right" opinion with everyone.

Monday, September 24, 2012

These People Are Nuts

Sometimes, we do things that are simply undertaken for the novelty like carving out ice sculptures or making igloos just for fun.  At other times, we do things for a sitting in a dunk tank at a benefit or agreeing to have one's head shaved for a particular charity. Usually, such things are mostly harmless-at most, somewhat embarrassing-, and in the case of charity doings, can actually be thought of as a good deed. Polar Bear club plunges on the first of January around here are a regular thing, and perhaps a hundred people will show up, many having prepared with some form of "anti-freeze" prior to the event. At any rate, for most people, it's a quick in-and-out-and-back-into-the-warm-clothes kind of thing. However, if an individual is part of a larger group aiming to set some sort of record, there are rules to be followed closely...and that's the point at which I say, "Really? You're going to do THAT for THAT LONG? You're nuts." Into this group I cheerfully place those folks from Druridge Bay in the UK (England). Last week, there was an organized attempt to break into the Guinness Book of World Records in the category of "largest group of people skinny dipping." OK, could be interesting...but then the organizers and the rules spoil the whole thing. To wit:

1. The organizers chose a day when the air temperature was 5.5 degrees celsius and the water temperature was around 12 degrees celsius (for us: air at 42 and water at 53). By any measure, that's darned chilly on both fronts (and backs, too, I guess).

2. Participants had to stay in the water for 10 minutes in order to be considered a record-breaker. And, as one can see from the photo, it wasn't wading knee-deep water, either. BRRRR!

3. Back to the organizers. While I imagine it was difficult to count participants since some probably backed out after assembling on the beach, the number to beat was "almost" 400, the estimate (?) for the record-breaking dash and splash last year. There were barely (so to speak) 200 folks brave enough to brave the chill so obviously the record was not in danger. Even a quick estimate could have noted the lack of significant numbers; maybe that wasn't important, though.

Ultimately, the event went off lin a flurry of bathrobes under chilly conditions, and several thousand pounds were raised for a mental health charity named Mind.
Mind? You're darn right I mind getting into almost freezing water, au natural or otherwise. These folks, however are obviously made of sterner stuff.
Just like those January Polar Bear nuts.


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