Blog dedicated primarily to randomly selected news items; comments reflecting personal perceptions

Tuesday, July 07, 2015

Surviving Inspired Idiocy

"It was eerie because it didn't feel the same way you thought it would. It wasn't as bumpy as you'd expect, but when the balloons started blowing up the whole chair would shake like crazy. It was like a gun going off."
"About halfway through my descent, I knew I was getting pushed backwards and there was no way I was going to make it. I had to pick an emergency landing spot. I'm pretty sure I broke my foot. It's no big deal."
"We didn't think they'd take it as seriously as they are [police]. Things are a little more severe than we anticipated."
"The winds were so violent up there. It was aggressive. I was a little bit in shock it was so cold up there."
"If I were to do it again [the police] wouldn't be as easy on me. If I had the opportunity to it again legally, I would do it again."
Dan Boria, owner, All Clean Natural company
Dan Boria Balloon Man
"Obviously it's not a regulated device [agglomeration of helium balloons]. It's something that he concocted himself."
"I've been on this job for twenty years and this is the first time I've seen something like this. Usually you see it on the TV shows of things not to do."
Kyle Grant, acting inspector, District 1, Calgary Police Services

As public relations and advertising stunts go this was rather imaginative and pretty well simpleton-inspired. What could go wrong? Well, putting together one hundred helium-filled balloons and trusting that their airy loft would safeguard one's life while suspended beneath their aggregate lift in a plastic lawn chair, hovering above clouds while airplanes pass close by isn't most people's idea of brilliant inspiration. Perhaps they don't know how to spell: BOLD INNOVATION.

Balloon chair

And for this stunt, drawing attention to himself and his company through this incredible piece of showmanship one can only classified as demented derring-do and a disregard for one's safety, unless one is completely beyond recognizing the foolishness of such an enterprise, 26-year-old entrepreneur Dan Boria was charged with public mischief, leaving Calgary police, during the event known as the Calgary Stampede which draws thousands out to watch that spectacle, scratching their heads in bewilderment.

At the lengths people with imagination and insufficient common sense to accompany it, will go to, in an effort to be noticed, presumably admired, and feted for a new level of salesmanship. He was advertising his cleaning company, with the use of air currents enabling him to float above the Stampede. He meant to conclude his little adventure by skydiving into the chuckwagon races, flying his company logo by, on a banner hauled by a small airplane above his balloons.

He meant also, to arouse a spirit of celebration among those witnessing this idiocy, without a doubt. However, things went somewhat awry after 30 minutes aloft, when he was unable to parachute into the races and instead crash-landed "a mile or two" away from the Stampede. Making not quite the splash he had intended, but managing to survive his miscalculation nonetheless. For which most people would be grateful, but he appears inspired to give it another try.

Calgary Police were waiting for him as he landed and charged him with mischief causing danger to life; arresting him at the scene of his inglorious descent as he came down to earth, literally. He suffered "minor injuries" treated then and there, and transported to the court services program. The company owner, Dan Boria and his employees evidently thought of the idea together. Might it be possible his employees worked on the theory that their idiotic employer might learn a lesson in sobriety?
Calgary Sun

The $20 lawn chair, the six-foot balloons and helium that cost $12,000 could be reckoned an investment in opportunity to treat the public to really imaginative advertising; since television and radio adverts are so last-century, after all.

One can only imagine his long-suffering mother, raising this creatively imaginative child to become an irrationally imaginative semi-adult whose exploits must lead her from heart palpitations to the constant verge of total collapse.

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