WPA Your notes are welcome: Editor@UpperWindpower.com
Clarification of title at www.CometClones.com
"Mythology of the Airframe -- A Plague of Paragliders"
10 Sept. 2011
Know that there is at least one person who read your entire wonderful letter. Me.
Bob Dylan always refused to interpret his lyrics. It was an effective strategy because it created discourse that swelled the popularity of his works. My intent is the same, although I am not adverse to interpretation.
The Greek and Roman gods never existed, yet they live on in quite detailed myths. Despite the fact that these myths are falsehoods, passed down through multiple generations, they were taught as truths by the people who believed them. Note that a fable is a story always with a moral, while a myth describes an event that did not happen.
Nowhere in the aerial world do we see an analog for frameless aerodynamic flight. This is because airborne flying creatures evolved under the constant threat of acceleration of gravity. Wings needed to stay wings all the time lest turbulence bring their evolutionary progress to a sudden end. This lack of history has driven the paragliding community to create myths about flying.
If I were to concoct "The Fable of the Airframe," I might write a story about an engineering triumph over difficult challenges. But to regard the airframe as a myth -- "The Mythology of the Airframe" -- is to diminish its importance; to marginalize its existence; to imply that the airframe "is just a myth."
So "Mythology of the Airframe" is the name of this myth from the perspective of one who believes the myth -- the paraglider pilot. And "Mythology of the Airframe" is only one of several myths. Another is "The Pilot is Always at Fault." Another is "All Aircraft Have a DMC." They have created a string of mythologies to obfuscate reality. I have never seen anything like it. It is so delusional that it surpasses all other sports and may stand on par with some notable historical manias.
"A Plague of Paragliders" is a direct quote of a British hang glider pilot who was run out of his native soaring hills by increasing numbers of paragliders taking up all the soaring space. He was forced to give up local flying and regularly travel to Spain on holiday to pursue his sport.
Thanks again for the letter in PG Forum. You possess a rare quality of reasoning and patience that will likely fall flat on those Attention-Deficit-Disordered Nanny-Fascists you are trying to reach -- but will serve as an important reference for those who bother to think.
Joe's struggle is part of the linked letter posted in ParaglidingForum.
Here is the clipped paragraph that shows some struggle and missing of some
of R.M.'s intent: