Li: ritual, propriety, etiquette. Hsiao: love within the family (parents for children and children for parents. Yi: righteousness--the noblest way to act in a situation. Xin: honesty and trustworthiness. Jen: benevolence, humaneness towards others. Chung: loyalty to the state and authority. --Confucius (Kong Fuzi)

All articles appear in reverse chronological order [newest first].

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I believe the past is relevant, sometimes more than others of course. In most cases we are seeing history being repeated, so it is most relevant.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

The first person to go over Niagara Falls in a barrel was…

… a 63 year old women!
  I was listening to Radiolab podcast on NPR about the fear of Fallen(ing) when they told a story about what it was like to go over the falls, and the consequences of some of the trips. This led me to do a little research on the subject. (The podcast can be found at the bottom of this article.)   GlennDL
October 24th 1901
She decided to go down the falls after she lost her teaching job. She was heading to the poor house if she didn’t think of something else to do?
Annie Taylor was the first person to conquer the falls in a barrel. After climbing inside her airtight wooden barrel, the air pressure was compressed to 30 p.s.i. with a bicycle pump.  image
Though bruised and battered Annie made it, she expected fame and fortune.
Annie died in poverty.
Desiring to secure her later years financially, and avoid the poorhouse, she decided she would be the first person to ride over Niagara Falls in a barrel. Taylor used a custom-made barrel for her trip, constructed of oak and iron and padded with a mattress. Several delays occurred in the launching of the barrel, particularly because no one wanted to be part of a potential suicide. Two days before Taylor's own attempt, a domestic cat was sent over the Horseshoe Falls in her barrel to test its strength. Contrary to rumors at the time, the cat survived the plunge and 17 minutes later, after she was found with a bleeding head, posed with Taylor in photographs (That’s the kitty on top of the barrel.)
July 25th 1911

The infamous Bobby Leach plunged over the Falls in a steel barrel.   Bobby broke both kneecaps and his jaw during his daring event.
Years later while touring in New Zealand, Bobby slipped on an orange peel and died from complications due to gangrene !

July 11th 1920
Englishman Charles G. Stephens equipped his wooden barrel with an anvil for ballast. Charles tied himself to the anvil for security. After the plunge,  Chucks right arm was the only item left in the barrel.
The ultimate  daredevil .... Robert Overacker, 39, fell to his death at Niagara Falls in  1995 when his parachute failed to open as he drove a jetski over the edge.

October 1st 1995
Robert Overcracker rides a jet ski over the brink of the Horseshoe Falls to help promote awareness for the homeless. His parachute did not open and Robert ended up promoting better parachutes. He plunged to his death and his body was never recovered. An Egyptian tourist captured this amazing image.
October 22nd 2003
Kirk Jones from Canton Michigan becomes first stunter in the history of Niagara Falls to survive the plunge wearing only the clothes on his back. Kirk's idea had been in the works for a number of years. While here on a visit with a friend, Kirk made the decision. They purchased a used video camera to record this historical  event and went to the Horseshoe Falls on the Canadian side of the river.
Kirk entered the water about one hundred yards upstream and began swimming out into the swift current. Eight seconds later Kirk made the 175 foot (53.3m) drop and swam to shore while passing up a free ride with the "maid of the mist" tour boat. Kirk was treated for minor bumps and bruises at local a hospital and released only after promising to return for court. For his stunt Kirk was fined a total of $2,300.00 dollars and banned from entering Canada for life. 
Unfortunately Kirk and his friend had been imbibing in alcohol before the stunt and Kirks friend couldn't figure out how to work the camcorder and the entire stunt went unrecorded!
Fear of Falling:
There are so many ways to fall—in love, asleep, even flat on your face. This hour, Radiolab dives into stories of great falls. 
We jump into a black hole, take a trip over Niagara Falls, upend some myths about falling cats, and plunge into our favorite songs about falling.
The Niagara Falls story starts at the  35:35 mark

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