Join 3,512 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)


Would have been better as a half-pipe
June 2, 2010 4:55 AM   Subscribe

We've seen lots of crazy skydiving, BASE jumping, wingsuit flying and so on. Now watch Taïg Khris jump from the Eiffel Tower wearing rollerblades. SLYT [turn speakers down if you don't like loud crowds].
posted by bwg (59 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

 
I watched the video several times (without sound) and every time found it less than impressive. Maybe I am jaded.
posted by JohnnyGunn at 4:58 AM on June 2, 2010 [2 favorites]


Third time lu.... oh. Well, good enough I suppose.

I took my three-year-old son down a slightly smaller version of one of those last week. Even knowing that the element of danger is practically nil, it's still pretty scary sitting at the top. I was all for going down a few mores times, but the boy's instinct for self-preservation kicked in and he wasn't having any of it.
posted by le morte de bea arthur at 5:04 AM on June 2, 2010


I think you are jaded.

If he jumps out just a fraction too far he breaks his legs. If he lands wrong he breaks his ankles at best. If he jumps out too far and goes off balance mid-air he probably breaks his hip, back or neck.

It's a form of flattery that it looks relatively simple.

If you've ever stood at the top of a 10 meter diving board you'll understand that what it looks like and what it looks like from the top are two very different things.
posted by MuffinMan at 5:08 AM on June 2, 2010 [2 favorites]


Also, it looks to me like he's falling over in the second take on purpose, to prepare for hitting the boxes.
posted by MuffinMan at 5:09 AM on June 2, 2010


I think I found it hard to appreciate due to the falling over part.
posted by a womble is an active kind of sloth at 5:15 AM on June 2, 2010 [2 favorites]


Damn, put me in the jaded column.

You know what would have been cool? If he'd stayed on his feet.

You know what would have been cooler still? If instead of polystyrene boxes at the end, there'd been a ramp to flick him back up in the air so that he could use that parachute I was convinced he had (in the first shot) to base jump with.

But you know what would have been even cooler still? Another rhetorical question.
posted by sodium lights the horizon at 5:17 AM on June 2, 2010 [6 favorites]


If he jumps out just a fraction too far he breaks his legs. If he lands wrong he breaks his ankles at best. If he jumps out too far and goes off balance mid-air he probably breaks his hip, back or neck.

It's a form of flattery that it looks relatively simple.


Hear hear! I say we praise the guy that did something deliberately stupid so well that he managed to fail to hurt himself!
posted by DU at 5:18 AM on June 2, 2010 [3 favorites]


I'm with sodium lights. This had all kinds of why written all over it.

I've never been on rollerblades in my life and the only part of that I couldn't do was have the nerve to assemble thousands of people to watch me not do what they were expecting me to do. Nerf blocks at the end? Really? Why?
posted by dobbs at 5:27 AM on June 2, 2010


Meh. That was a lot less impressive then it sounded. When you read "off the Eiffel tower" you think the top, and you think 'too the ground' not a platform high above the ground. And uh, he doesn't even stick the landing.

Also, while it's true that if he jumped "too far" he could have hurt himself, but how exactly would he have been able to do that? You can only push off with so much force.
I say we praise the guy that did something deliberately stupid so well that he managed to fail to hurt himself!
Lighten up.
posted by delmoi at 5:27 AM on June 2, 2010


Tipper was impressed. Al was meh. So now we know the whole story.
posted by Danf at 5:32 AM on June 2, 2010 [2 favorites]


Also, while it's true that if he jumped "too far" he could have hurt himself, but how exactly would he have been able to do that? You can only push off with so much force.

It's the gradient. From 30 metres, you don't need much force to jump out another meter or two. At the point because of the gradient he's actually landing considerably further down.
posted by MuffinMan at 5:40 AM on June 2, 2010


sodium lights the horizon: "You know what would have been cooler still? If instead of polystyrene boxes at the end, there'd been a ramp to flick him back up in the air so that he could use that parachute I was convinced he had (in the first shot) to base jump with."

See title.
posted by bwg at 5:47 AM on June 2, 2010


The version that was on the BBC wesbite has an interview where he is exultant that his *two years* of training paid off.
posted by biffa at 5:50 AM on June 2, 2010


Another great moment in Eiffel Tower history.
posted by stavrogin at 5:59 AM on June 2, 2010


Worlds most spectacular fumble down the Eiffel Tower.
posted by fire&wings at 6:04 AM on June 2, 2010 [1 favorite]


I jumped off higher things that that when I was a kid.
posted by Solomon at 6:05 AM on June 2, 2010


Wile E Coyote did this better with an ACME rocket pack.
posted by kuujjuarapik at 6:08 AM on June 2, 2010 [2 favorites]


It's the gradient. From 30 metres, you don't need much force to jump out another meter or two. At the point because of the gradient he's actually landing considerably further down.

What do you mean by 'gradient' here?

If it was 40 meters to the bottom of the ramp, and he accelerates downward at 9.8m/s2 then you only have 2.9 seconds of fall max.

According to this someone doing a standing long jump (trying to jump as far as they can) can go about 3.5 m/s. So in 2.9 seconds that's just 10 meters. Which is kind of far but this guy is wearing roller blades and he's not trying to jump as far as he can. I think it would be pretty difficult to push off very quickly on accident.

And when you figure in the slope it gets more complicated, since you don't go a full 40 meters before you intercept the slope, it's actually dependent on how fast you're going. You could model it as the intersection of two parabolas (or a parabola and some other curve, whatever), which I'm not going to do.
posted by delmoi at 6:09 AM on June 2, 2010


it looked like going down the big water slide, without the involuntary enema...
posted by stifford at 6:15 AM on June 2, 2010


There are lots of thing that people do that are dangerous. There are lots of things that people do that are cool. This is more of the former than the latter.
posted by sexymofo at 6:15 AM on June 2, 2010


I played it expecting someone to rollerblade down the whole tower, filmed with shaky cam and then be chased by security guards, barely escaping, and some annoying dudes high-fiving each other and yelling and being so perfectly suepr coool alpha hipsters, and I'd sip my coffee and marvel jadedly at how clever those viral ads are becoming, that's some nice skilled fake footage, and hey look there's a few comments over at Metafilter actually falling for it, I bet The Oatmeal is going to do a piece on viral gullibility just like he did with email addresses, and.. oh wait I should show this to mom she's going to totally believe it

BUT IT ISNT A VIRAL I AM DISAPPOINTED RUINED MY BESSERWISSING
posted by gmm at 6:26 AM on June 2, 2010 [2 favorites]


Delmoi, I'm referring to the gradient of the slope.

The step off he makes looks easy, but isn't. It's not that hard for him to get it wrong, which carries him considerably further down because the tail of comes sharply at the bottom of the slope. Where he hits it in the video is still nearly vertical.

In summary: try it off a 20 meter board at a swimming pool. It's not actually that easy to go *no* distance.
posted by MuffinMan at 6:30 AM on June 2, 2010


And when you figure in the slope it gets more complicated, since you don't go a full 40 meters before you intercept the slope, it's actually dependent on how fast you're going. You could model it as the intersection of two parabolas (or a parabola and some other curve, whatever), which I'm not going to do.

Good thing, because you can't. You need to know where both parabolae are relative to each other, which I don't think is viewable in the video. If he's mounted right above the highest point, then a small change in x is going to be a large change in y. But if he's mounted farther downslope, then small x changes are going to be small(er) y changes.

In fact, this is how they can prevent him from jumping too far. Just have him jump off from an x such that the largest change in x he could reasonably give would still be a safe difference in y. (Holding his distance above the ramp constant.)

Say the equation for the ramp is y = x2. Should we mount him at x = 20 meters? Well, if he jumped out a meter, then the difference would be y(20) - y(19) = 400 - 361 = 39 meters. No. How about at x = 5 meters? y(5) - y(4) = 9 meters. OK.
posted by DU at 6:38 AM on June 2, 2010


I'm going into the "meh" column. He seems only slightly more likely to hurt himself than a ski jumper would. Now this is slightly less French, but significantly more badass.
posted by It's Never Lurgi at 7:12 AM on June 2, 2010 [6 favorites]


This blog post says 131 feet (39.9 meters) is the height first floor of the Eiffel Tower. Some of the photos on flickr tagged "taigkhris" are a bit more impressive, but none good enough (to my eye) to infer the actual height of the lower platform or the radius of the curve. I tried to find a diagram of the ramp but failed.

It doesn't "look" impressive, I agree. It's intellectually impressive as a world record (highest roller skate jump) , but it doesn't hit me in the gut as impressive. So, a reluctant "meh" from me.

Actually, Tour Eiffel diagram seems to say height of 1st deck is 57.6m (189 feet) so does that mean the floor of the ramp is 17.7 meters off the ground? Would love to have the physics and architecture nerds to weigh in more on this.
posted by artlung at 7:27 AM on June 2, 2010


Damn I love MeFi for its maths. It's just such a same that the Maths are such a creepy, cryptic, scary language for me personally.
posted by TomMelee at 7:33 AM on June 2, 2010


Is that Kurt Vonnegut at 0:34?
posted by jeffamaphone at 7:37 AM on June 2, 2010


Kurt Vonnegut has come unstuck in time?
posted by kmz at 7:44 AM on June 2, 2010


I am impressed by how absolutely, epically, perfectly anticlimactic that was. There is nothing about it that does not elicit the most emphatic meh I have ever felt.

- Huge elaborate setup
- Two years of preparation
- Thousands of spectators

...for...

- A guy in rollerblades
- Jumping from the bottom of the tower
- Into cushy padding
- Making only two attempts
- In less than a minute
- Resulting in no obvious success (if he meant to fall, that just makes it even more impressively lame)
- Followed by triumphant jubilation from the guy in rollerblades and no one else
posted by Sys Rq at 7:55 AM on June 2, 2010 [3 favorites]


Clearly he failed to be sponsored by Red Bull...
posted by chavenet at 8:12 AM on June 2, 2010


It looks like his ankles are buckling under the weight as he hits the slope. How many g's is he experiencing? I bet if he used old-school roller skates he would have a much better chance of staying upright.
posted by CynicalKnight at 8:13 AM on June 2, 2010


Meanwhile, stavrogin's Franz Reichelt film may contain an early iteration of the spoiler -- the title card in there kind of gives away the horrible denouement...
posted by chavenet at 8:16 AM on June 2, 2010


I've seen things you people wouldn't believe.
This wasn't one of them.
posted by grobstein at 8:19 AM on June 2, 2010 [1 favorite]


Just to carry on with the spoilsportage, it appears he doesn't jump from the Eiffel Tower. He jumps from a platform constructed in front of the Eiffel Tower, level with the underside of the base arch. You could take the Eiffel Tower away and put it somewhere else and have no effect on the stunt.
posted by George_Spiggott at 8:45 AM on June 2, 2010


Ceci n'est pas une moitié-pipe.
posted by kirkaracha at 8:48 AM on June 2, 2010 [6 favorites]


I'm not saying it's not dangerous. I'm not saying it's not scary. I'm just saying it's not impressive.
posted by toekneebullard at 8:51 AM on June 2, 2010 [4 favorites]


Boring. I'm still going to stick with BASE jumping, wingsuit flying and so on. Wait, what if we combined them. Dean Potter may be a dick, but the boy has balls of steel or a nut loose. Jumping off the Eiffel Tower in extremely controlled conditions is one thing, free-soloing a 5.12 with a BASE chute and hoping you don't hit the wall when you accidentally blow a move is another.
posted by misterpatrick at 8:52 AM on June 2, 2010


| meh | wow |
|  ✓  |     |

posted by bitdamaged at 9:13 AM on June 2, 2010 [4 favorites]


Ha la la. Mo-on Dieu!
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 9:17 AM on June 2, 2010


¡Meh!

Couldn't a middling professional skateboarder have slid down that thing on, like, 10 minutes' notice?
posted by eugenen at 9:27 AM on June 2, 2010 [1 favorite]


I'd be more impressed with the 'danger' aspect of the thing if he didn't completely fuck up the first time and then go 'Whoops! Let's do that again!'
posted by shakespeherian at 9:30 AM on June 2, 2010


Oh la la....MEH.

French should stick to Cinema and Amore.

Beautiful clip/music courtesy of Humonculous.
posted by Skygazer at 10:09 AM on June 2, 2010


Couldn't a middling professional skateboarder have slid down that thing on, like, 10 minutes' notice?

No.
posted by The World Famous at 10:25 AM on June 2, 2010


How many g's is he experiencing?

Just the one, due to being attracted downwards by the planet.

I think most of his problem was due to having to use a nice smooth slope. The downside of a nice smooth slope that won't burn your pants is that you're going to slide about and fall over.
posted by le morte de bea arthur at 10:25 AM on June 2, 2010 [6 favorites]


"How many g's is he experiencing?

Just the one, due to being attracted downwards by the planet."


I laughed until tears ran down my cheeks. Well done.
posted by mr_crash_davis mark II: Jazz Odyssey at 10:33 AM on June 2, 2010 [1 favorite]


"LA TOUR I FELL", INNIT
posted by everichon at 10:54 AM on June 2, 2010


How many g's is he experiencing?

Just the one, due to being attracted downwards by the planet.


What about when he hits the ramp?

When you hit a hard surface after a long fall (under 1g), you can experience more than 1g of force because you decelerate very quickly, and F=MA.

So in the context of CynicalKnight's question, I'm afraid you are wrong and being a jerk.
posted by grobstein at 11:05 AM on June 2, 2010


a similar argument applies if the colloquial g is a unit of acceleration rather than of force
posted by grobstein at 11:07 AM on June 2, 2010


Grobstein, I bet you're a laugh riot at parties...

Why you gotta be ruinin' everyones jokes with logic and physics and shit, yo??

~Wink~
posted by Skygazer at 11:12 AM on June 2, 2010


keep the change kid lol
posted by Challahtronix at 11:46 AM on June 2, 2010


So in the context of CynicalKnight's question, I'm afraid you are wrong and being a jerk.

Sorry. Ironically, I'm qualified to teach college physics. But I thought a detailed calculation of the contact forces involved in touching down on a steep slope on rollerblades would lack a certain comic je ne sais quoi.
posted by le morte de bea arthur at 11:50 AM on June 2, 2010


Has nobody told this guy or his fans that Rollerblades stopped being cool years ago and we've still got a couple more years before they're cool in an ironic sense?
posted by The Potate at 12:11 PM on June 2, 2010


Has nobody told this guy or his fans that Rollerblades stopped being cool years ago and we've still got a couple more years before they're cool in an ironic sense?

Maybe you can go over to France and spread the word. Because everybody appreciates an American who tells them how to be cool.
posted by The World Famous at 12:16 PM on June 2, 2010 [2 favorites]


Weak... SK8 OR DIE!!
posted by MNDZ at 12:24 PM on June 2, 2010 [1 favorite]


What the fuck? He jumped from the bottom of the tower and slid into a pile of Styrofoam. B.F.D.

First I thought my eyes were playing tricks on me and he was jumping from the top of the Eiffel tower on to a ramp that was on a slightly lower level, and that he was going to use the ramp to do some kind of ski-jump thing off the tower, and then pull a chute. Now THAT would have been cool.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 1:49 PM on June 2, 2010


Wow, that was weak. I almost expected the crowd to slowly go silent, and leave.
posted by porpoise at 11:36 PM on June 2, 2010 [1 favorite]


I wasn't kidding about the half-pipe thing; that would have at least been cool.

But I have to wonder if any of us saying "meh" would have the guts to do even what this guy did, so I at least give him props for guts.
posted by bwg at 6:18 AM on June 3, 2010


When you hit a hard surface after a long fall (under 1g), you can experience more than 1g of force because you decelerate very quickly, and F=MA.

Isn't g a measure of acceleration? I don't disagree the F becomes huge when you decelerate rapidly, but I don't understand what is meant by '1g of force'.

Nevertheless, le morte de bea arthur is correct that there is only 1 'g' of acceleration here.
posted by a womble is an active kind of sloth at 7:49 AM on June 3, 2010


But the deceleration, is probably more than 1g.
posted by a womble is an active kind of sloth at 2:04 PM on June 8, 2010


« Older It's a Go-Go with the Blago. Thursday, June 3rd, R...  |  Michael Fivis, Maximus Chatsky... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments