Another of Lex’s ‘Archive’ posts – on this day in 2006, Lex published a link back seven of his entries from early 2004.
Originally published August 13th, 2006.
Lex had some interesting posts. Haven’t finished them all yet but on hypoxia years ago when living in Sandy Eggo – with a current pilot’s license – the FAA allowed us to go through that class Lex spoke of at Miramar NAS.
Nothing like experiencing it first hand – it was, as Lex said, insidious – you really don’t realize it is affecting you. That same day they played a 12 minute recording of an F4 pilot departing (I think) St Louis – and his O2 system wasn’t connected – whatever the problem was it was malfunctioning and he didn’t know it. From the time he took off with a steep ascent.
It was chilling to hear his radio conversations go from coherent to semi coherent – to near unconsciousness – and there was of course nothing anyone could do about it.
Hypoxia is what got the golf pro Payne Stewart and the crew of his Learjet. The pressurization system on the Lear wasn’t working an the plane flew on autopilot until it ran out of fuel.
That was a memorable day at Miramar.
I also remember an exercise where they blindfolded us – sat us in a chair like a barber’s chair – and slowly spun us – then stopped – asking the volunteer to tell the group when it stopped.
They could not do it.
That fluid in the middle ear was still sloshing (I think that is the medical term ) giving the person a false sensation.
The lessons learned ?
Trust your instruments. Be aware of hypoxia and how it can hit you – and you don’t know it.
I rode the helo dunker (in order to log time on the Pave Pigs), 5 times. I “released early, without panic” the instructions were to wait until movement stopped, release, find your exit. What they meant was when “you” stopped, as in settled into the straps. Unlike Lex I liked the rides.
The entire day from academics through the training was some of the best training I received in 21+ years in the military. To this day whenever I board an aircraft I count window frames, seat legs and ceiling frames to the nearest two exits.
Coaching Soccer – what a story! Like some of Lex’s stories, the end comes out of left field and what you thought were unrelated subjects are….related.
And David – It wouldn’t surprise me if Lex was the one difference that kept this troubled boy out of prison.
You never know.
I think i mentioned to you all about a book – for the life of me I wish I could remember the title – or had read it – but in the reviews – the premise was that in this world we do not know the long term effects we have on those for which we gave the smallest kindness – an encouraging word? A little time?
people we may have forgotten – the kindness was that small – or fleeting.
But it left an impression on the recipient.
You never know…
Great posting choice! I certainly hope that NL gets published in some form. Lex was an amazing wordsmith. “Rules” left me feeling sad and reflective… thinking that all the preparedness in the world can’t always engineer a happy ending.
I don’t think I ever read the Coaching Soccer post before today. Knowing Lex, he thought of David often in the years after that coaching season. I wonder if he ever kept tabs on him and knew what became of him.
And the world – it is smaller again.
A thought I had while reading that though Kris – I think of it as just one small way Lex left the world a bit better than before -
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