What does it take for a person to become passionate about an act? Passion can come from a flash of inspiration in a personal moment of truth, a realization that you have discovered the thing that lights you up. It can be quiet and subtle, a delicate detail kept private with the person feeling that magical spark, or it can be as loud as a sonic boom, resonating through thousands, in an explosive flash of combined celebration. I have felt the joy of both, but the common thread among the driving force of this passion is the physical response to my surroundings. That heart pumping, goose bump producing, tingling response to something that calls to you from deep within. It doesn’t have to be a jump out of an airplane or cliff diving, it can be as simple as the rush you get from rocking an amazing meal from scratch in the kitchen or coaching a child in a sport… the point is that you FEEL something, anything! Don’t tell me you haven’t had these moments… they make us deliciously human. They remind us that the day to day requirements of being a responsible adult can be peppered with kick-ass, reckless, deep down all-around pure, yummy, juicy joy.
I had a great conversation yesterday with a new friend who also shares my love of aviation. We talked about the fact that in order to grow this field, and inspire others to fall in love with the freedom of the sky, we must reject EXclusionary behaviors and be INclusive, sharing our passions and inviting others to dive head first into this romantic quest. How can we do this? You have to invite the people you love and care about to experience these things with you. It does not mean they will love the same things you do, but let’s face it… passion is as contagious as bird flu. Being around someone who is in their element and living to their highest potential is addictive! These people are on fire and they leave others thinking, I want to get me some of that!
Over the last months I have realized that generationally, we have been given a gift. We are in an age of instant feedback, mass crowds, and high-definition excitement that can be enjoyed and cultivated in your living room. I am by NO means condoning hours of sweat-pants wearing, potato chip eating, YouTube marathon sessions of Red Bull Wing Suit videos, however, I AM an advocate of using our online tools to motivate our actions. I can get so pumped up after watching a fast paced, brightly colored, music ridden video about some sort of goal I want to pursue and then… you guessed it, I am over at REI asking about all season tents, carbon fiber frames and which wetsuit will cut down on resistance in salt water. The point, is, the online visual component of the passions that drive us to take to the air, the land, the sea, a profession, a cause, a destination, an outcome are all right in front of us and ready to act as a motivator.
When I really break down what I want to do with this flight and those I am about to embark upon, I always come down to the same answer. I want to ignite that passion for adventure in others. I want to see, on the faces of others, that slightly crazy look that I see in the mirror right before I do something amazing! How can we do this? We can get them pumped up! We can show kids what is possible, we can inspire adults who have forgotten what it is like to take a risk and seize the beauty that is all around us!
You know the why, now it is time for the how. I am stoked to announce that we have teamed up with N Flight Cam, a company that is blowing the minds of action sports enthusiasts all over the world with their devices. N Flight Cam believes in the beauty, passion and romantic awe of aviation and they are helping out with this trip! We are going to mount 4 1080p High Definition cameras on the Cirrus. We are talking wing tips, vertical stabilizers, the belly of the plane, the interior dash, the ceiling, the windows, on other planes flying near by. If that doesn’t get you excited, maybe these videos will.
These types of videos were made to get YOU inspired to act. They INclude you in the process and the only thing they EXclude is boredom and laziness. When this trip is said and done, and I am back in Denver… it is seriously on. School visits, presentations, charity events… all these opportunities that I am given to talk about aviation will be complimented by this awe inspiring type of video, the blood pumping action that makes us stand up and take notice. I will use these videos to invite others to find their joy, the thing that lights them up.
Thank you to the team at N Flight Cam for living a life of action and adventure You are the type of company that will show the world that these types of experiences and visuals happen in real life and not just in video games and guys hopped up on energy drinks wearing squirrel suits (Love you Red Bull).
So give in, watch something riveting, but don’t let it stop there. It is time to make your own action video. Show it off. You are great and the world deserves to see you in all your glory.