Sunday, January 21, 2007

Maybe You Should Be Feeding Sharks

I have recently come across this fantastic book called NOW No Opportunity Wasted : Creating a List for Life by young New Zealand adventurer, Phil Keoghan. After a near death experience, Phil is living life at 100 miles per hour. ( 160 kilometres per hour just doesn't sound as good... does it! ) He sees his mission in life to challenge you and I to experience life as if today was our last day. Just reading his book get the pulse surging.

Phil has calculated the chances of a number of obscure occurrences.. There’s a certain level of risk in living adventurously, just as there is in stepping outside the door of your house each day (or staying inside, for that matter). To put it all into perspective, here are some relevant numbers.

Chances of getting attacked by a shark: It happens only about 60 times a year worldwide, and that’s down 30 percent from a few years ago. You’re more likely to be attacked by a dog in your own cosy neighbourhood.

Chances of dying from a snake bite: Only one in five snakes are poisonous, and only one in 10 people actually bitten by a snake die, that’s 40,000 a year. Food poisoning from shrimp cocktail is more common.

Chances of having a skydiving accident: There are 3 million jumps a year, and only 30 people a year die from skydiving. That’s one in 100,000 ratio. You’re more likely to be killed in a commercial airline crash.

Chances that you will slip out of your shoes while bungee jumping: Virtually nonexistent. Only a handful of deaths have been reported worldwide over the past decade, and that encompasses millions of jumps. So the accident ratio is literally one in a million. Contrast this to the one in 6,000 chance that you will die in a car accident in any given year.

Here are few other things that are worth noting.

Chances that you will die at home in your own bed: This happens a lot.
Chances that if you stay out of bed, you might live forever: Maybe 90 Percent?
Chances that you will die from drinking cobra blood in the jungle: All I can tell you is, Phil has apparently done this and is still here!

And there is some priceless information for all you thrill seekers out there:

How To Hand Feed A Shark

First of all, don’t use your hand. If a shark takes food out of your hand, the hand then becomes associated with food. That’s a bad association.

Use the proper utensils. A metal skewer with grouper on the end works well. If you want a little more distance, use a rope with grouper on it.

Try not to get distracted. Once Phil was feeding a shark for a morning T.V program, whilst being simultaneously serenaded live by the singer Gladys Knight. It almost caused him to stop paying attention to the shark. Almost.

If you’re right handed, hold the skewer in your left hand. Just in case.
Bring a chaperone on your dinner date. In other words, don’t feed a shark (or dive with one) unless it’s under the supervision of a licensed shark expert.

Don’t expect the shark to be grateful. Sharks aren’t like dolphins. In fact, you can get more intimate with a whale than with a shark. (Not that you’d want intimacy with a shark.)

So, if you are looking for a N.O.W. Experience, maybe reading Phil's book will calm your urge.

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