denny: (Airkix)
Hi Denny,

We have not met yet, but I am Matt Gough. I am the Marketing Coordinator for Airkix.

I understand that you are the administrator for the unofficial Airkix fan group(?).

I understand that you created this group to bring together fellow fans before we decided to make a fan page ourselves, so thanks very much for being a great supporter. It is much appreciated that we have such loyal customers.

I have recently been bought on board at Airkix to improve our marketing and drive our brand image. As such I am putting some focus towards social media sites, including our Facebook page.

Whilst I know you made this group with the best intentions and it has been a great place for members to communicate about their experiences, would it be possible for you to close the group down? The only reason why I ask is that, I'd like to avoid any facebook users not realising that the official page exists (where we provide special promotions etc), and as I'm sure you can imaging, I need to have tight control over anything that could influence our brand image.

I hope you are able to understand my position.

Many Thanks,


My response, and ensuing discussion )
denny: Photo of me wearing my beloved silly hat.  It's wuzzy! (Default)
(Quote from Iron Man, of course.)

For those who don't know, I can fly. Not in a plane, just in the air - I use my arms to steer, and twist my body to bank and swoop. It's fun.

Admittedly it's not the world's most useful superpower - in fact some might not call it a superpower at all, given that I can only fly inside a vertical wind-tunnel designed for that purpose. :)

To give you some idea of what this looks like, here's some footage of me flying:

Feels a lot like flying in dreams, except for those inconvenient glass walls :)

On Friday I learned a new trick, which made me pretty happy... so here's a video clip of me doing somersaults while floating in mid-air:

So far I've spent in the region of £3,600 (~$5000) on flying - for just over five hours of tunnel-time, spread over a couple of years.

And yes, it is definitely worth it :)
denny: Photo of me wearing my beloved silly hat.  It's wuzzy! (Default)
I'm sure very few people are interested by this point, but I finally appear to have got the hang of sitflying.

Flying in a 'normal' body position (I don't know about you, but I spend most of my waking hours sitting in a chair) feels orders of magnitude more surreal than belly or back-flying. It's pleasingly grin-inducing, both at the time and every time I've remembered it subsequently :-)
denny: (Get Cape Wear Cape Fly)
(like sit-flying, only not quite there yet) :-p
denny: (I'd rather be flying)
Just a heads-up (no pun intended) for those who've flown at Airkix in the past... apparently your 'pro-flyer' status expires after three months.

When I went at the weekend, not only did my friend [ profile] mr_magicfingers (a skydiver with well over a hundred jumps experience) have to sit through the training session again (and pay £10 for the privilege), they also tried to tell me I needed to redo the training because I was two days short of three months absence! Those who are aware of quite how much time I spent in that place at the end of last year will realise this is more than a little cheeky.

They also told us that [ profile] mr_magicfingers shouldn't really be flying at pro-flyer rates, which made me think of some of the rest of you. If you've flown in the last few months, you might want to consider whether it'll cost you more to redo your training every time you go (and pay 'first time' rates), or to make sure that you go back for another go once every 2.5 months :)

If you last flew more than three months ago, you may have to be prepared to pay 'first time' rates the next time you visit... although I have no idea whether they check these things, and if they'd catch you out if you just blatantly lied and said you'd last flown in February or something like that.

Speaking of Airkix, I'll be back there again on Wednesday 9th, flying at 20:30, if anyone wants to come along and watch (or indeed, come along and fly).
denny: (Airborne)

Airkix have finally sorted out the confusion with the vouchers my dad bought me for xmas - long story, but for a while there they'd 'lost' £170 of pre-paid tunnel time. Still, all's well that ends well, and I now have a sorted out and ready-for-abuse account with them, with all my time/money safely credited on it.

So... anyone want to go fly? Soon? :)

We Fly!

Mar. 29th, 2008 06:54 pm
denny: (Get Cape Wear Cape Fly)
I'm flying at Airkix tomorrow night... it's been almost exactly 3 months since I last flew, so I've no idea how it'll go, but hopefully I'll have fun. Anyone in the MK region is welcome to come along for the whole 'point and laugh' experience.
denny: (Get Cape Wear Cape Fly)
I booked a load of time in Airkix for this Saturday (10pm), expecting two or three other people to be coming along with me. As it happens, they're not. So um... anyone want to buy some cheap minutes off me? :)
denny: (Airkix)
Video clips of me trying to learn transitions from belly-flying to backflying and vice versa (turns out that back to belly is relatively easy, belly to back not so simple):

Barrel rolls

Ninja backflips!

Yeah, okay, so I still suck at it. But it was SO MUCH FUN!

In the process of trying to learn the latter, I did acquire a certain amount of bruising )

Oh, before I was allowed to start on transitions, I had to do stability training for backflying. Which basically means you try to float on the spot while the instructor tries to knock you out of the air :)

Backflying stability

In other bodyflying news, I just found a good page showing the progression of the various bodyflying levels, with some info about each one:

Their time estimates seem wildly optimistic to me - I'd double them all, at minimum - I've taken about two to three times that long for the stages I've done so far, and I'm told I'm 'about average'. Other than that it all tallies up with what I've been told by instructors so far, and seen other people doing. I just thought I'd post it to give people some idea of what the hell I'm talking about, if anyone actually cares that is :) So far I'm up to the end of backflying, about to move on to the walking drills (once I can stop bouncing off the net on those front->back transitions!)

I r ninja.

Dec. 15th, 2007 02:07 am
denny: (Win! Yay!)
Today (yesterday, technically), I spent a large chunk of the afternoon at Airkix, learning to do frontflips and backflips whilst floating in midair. I can't remember the last time I grinned so much.

Backflips. In midair. I'm a fucking Manga character.

I fact, when I left I was still grinning so much that people were giving me weird looks and then giving me a wide berth on the pavement :-p

I'm still high on endorphins now. :)
denny: (RX front nearside)
When I notified my car insurance company of my new address, they nicely doubled my insurance premiums. Given that my insurance was around £1200 a year already, this was particularly painful.

A quick phone-around yesterday turned up a number of better quotes, and I've taken the second-cheapest as I'm familiar with the company and know they have a good reputation for insuring modified cars. In fact, they're going to insure me cheaper with some engine modifications I have planned than NU would without them (NU actually refused to insure me at all with the engine mods, which is why they haven't been done already).

So... Norwich Union, £2374.50, with £650 excess. Adrian Flux, £839.00, with £200 excess. Not a bad saving for a few hours of making phone calls - shame I don't work 3-day weeks every week, I could actually catch up on all my hideously overdue personal admin stuff.

On which note, I'm off to the Co-op bank next, to get some documents witnessed so I can move my current account to Smile. Abbey have pissed me off one time too many this year. Well, more like a dozen times too many, come to think of it.

Oh, in other news, flying last night was excellent fun - I swooped around a lot on my front, and continued the slow process of being more in control of my backflying. Helen did even better, having one of those sessions where all the flailing half-control of previous sessions suddenly clicks in your muscle memory and you leap forward in skill and control. We came out full of adrenaline and endorphins and popped into a nearby Wetherspoons to fuel our well-exercised bodies with MEAT (and stuff). Unfortunately the food coma and the adrenaline comedown all happened at the same time, on the train home, so that was less fun. On the bright side, I didn't have to get up this morning. Yay for four-day weekends :)
denny: (Get Cape Wear Cape Fly)
My first ever flight at Airkix:

Last flight before I started learning backflying:
denny: (Get Cape Wear Cape Fly)
I looked at the vast empty expanse that is this weekend's plans, and then I accidentally tripped over the Airkix website, and next thing you know I've got four minutes flying booked on Sunday at 8pm. If anyone's bored and fancies joining me, there were at least four minutes left in that session, plus at least 8 in the two sessions after it, and I'll be driving down from London so there's a free lift in the offing (or I'm happy to catch the train if more than one other person wants to go along).

Is anything happening tomorrow? I seem to be at a loose end all day now. Although I might just spend it in bed reading - I keep meaning to find more time to relax and then sulking when I get it, must decide what I actually want and then be happy with it :)

PS: No, I don't like the band. But their name is great.
denny: (Airborne)
Stu stars in Crouching Instructor, Falling Monkey

Helen: "Oh shit, I think they saw me"

Elise: *HADOUKEN!!*

My backflying was slightly less pinball-like than last time (although slightly more like a helicopter blade that's got loose - uncontrolled spins for the lose), so that's looking hopeful. I do at least seem to have fixed most of my previous problems, even if I have discovered some new ones :) Got some helpfully simple and useful-sounding advice from both instructors we flew with today, plus I'm in for 10 minutes on Wednesday with a really good instructor, so hopefully I'll make some solid advances then. Starting to regain my excitement about the whole thing now, which is nice - the initial shock of how incredibly difficult backflying is did derail me somewhat.

Onward and upward, eh? :)


Oct. 18th, 2007 01:11 pm
denny: (Warning - Diamonoid surfaces)
Getting into bed on Tuesday, Helen asks what the hell I've done to my back. I say 'Wut?'. She points out that my back is covered in bruising, and asks if I've been sneaking off for secret liasons with dommes for severe beatings. I saw 'Wut??'. She takes a photo with my phone:

image )

I guess when I was learning backflying last week, I hit the mesh floor a bit harder than I realised each time I fell out of the air.
denny: (I'd rather be flying)
My social life for the next couple of weeks:

Fri 05 Oct 14:00 : Airkix with James (10 minutes)
Fri 12 Oct 22:00 : Airkix with Col and Bec (8 minutes)
Sun 14 Oct 21:00 : Airkix with Ellie (8 minutes)
Sun 21 Oct 13:30 : Airkix with 'nam posse (4 minutes)

I think that covers the essentials ;)
denny: (Stretch)
Saturday (last weekend) I went to Raindance, with [ profile] libellum, [ profile] flippit and [ profile] fire_brand. The music was fantastic - I could have danced all night on any one of five of the dancefloors (drum and bass, happy hardcore, hard house, old skool, and um, something else), and half the night on the sixth (90s cheese).

The drunk guy who stuck his hand up Fliss's skirt was less fantastic. Especially when, after I grabbed his wrists to stop him groping her, he headbutted me in the face and nearly broke my nose. I hate drunks.

So, we left relatively early (4am), and headed back to the House of Monkeys, where we found a sleepy [ profile] denari just finishing an epic video game mission. We chatted quietly for an hour or two, then all headed off to our various beds.

Sunday we got up late and had breakfast, then we had roast dinner not that long after it. So that was filling. Then we set fire to things and whirled them around, as per video already posted. I really need to spin fire more often, I keep forgetting how much fun it is.

During the week I've been steadily coming down with the lurgies of doom that everybody else has already been attacked by. I had Tuesday off work, and seriously considered taking Friday off too but decided against it in the end - work has been busy lately and I don't like taking time off unless I really feel like I need it. Speaking of work, on Thursday we had an excellent strategy meeting in the afternoon. I can only assume that I'm now fully into pointy-haired manager territory, when I leave a four hour meeting feeling like it was an enjoyable and worthwhile experience.

Last night I went flying again - this time for 8 minutes (4 x 2 minute slots). It was really good - I spent the first couple of minutes just arsing around, rather than trying to learn anything, which put me in a really good mood for the rest of the session. [ profile] skorpionuk and [ profile] dakeyras were with me as part of his birthday present, as was [ profile] pieces_of_ele as part of her mission to do everything possible in the six days remaining before she heads back to Australia (via the USA). They all did really well, and had lots of fun too from what I could tell.

In my other slots I practised some of the things I've been trying to learn recently, and roamed around the tunnel touching the wall wherever the instructor pointed at it as quickly as possible, which was fun. I get in and out of the tunnel by myself now, rather than being helped in and out, which helps me to feel a bit more competent. In the last session we did 'stability training', which was hilarious... the instructor got me to fly in the middle of the tunnel at about head height, then got me to do a serious of increasingly absurd actions; nazi-salute sort of movements, putting my hands on my head, putting one hand on my hip (didn't manage that one, it's bloody tricky!), and so on. Oh yes, and 'doggy paddle' - good lord that was silly. It's really hard not to flail your legs around when you're doing that with your arms :) As Col's flight was a birthday present, Bec paid for a DVD of the occasion, which should also feature my inane activities - I'll try to get some clips posted up at some point.

The next part of stability training was when the instructor started wandering behind me and 'stealing' the airflow from underneath various bits of me. It's quite disconcerting when (for instance) one of your legs suddenly loses all lift, and compensating for it was an interesting challenge. This part of the session culminated in him putting his feet centrally underneath me, with his body facing me but his back arched so much that his torso was nearly horizontal, and then spinning around underneath me in a very disconcerting fashion. It felt quite a lot like being in a small dinghy on large swell waves - odd rolling sensation. I did a very credible job of not falling out of the air, although I did giggle quite a lot when he came into view at such an odd angle beneath me.

I was pretty pleased with the whole session really, and was on an endorphin/adrenaline high all the way back to London and to [ profile] steerpikelet's birthday party.

Said party was fun in places, but my adrenaline did wear off fairly swiftly, so I gave Ele a lift home and headed back to my bed at about 4am, where I stayed until gone midday today. The cold/cough seems to have quite a thorough foothold now, so I'm probably going to spend the rest of the weekend lurking in bed and sulking. Boo, germs. On the bright side, I have a lot of shiny new books to read.
denny: (Airkix)
Flying last night with [ profile] denari. I didn't get all my basic flight skill ticks, clearly I suck. And not in the good way ;)

Last time I got everything except #9* ticked off, this time the instructor ticked them all off, but then turned #10** into a 1/2 - I must have been flailing around a bit I guess :)

On the bright side, I did one absolutely perfect diagonal (and a lot of rather less perfect ones, but the idea was there).

I wish we'd known nobody was booked in at 10pm, we'd have tried to persuade them to let us fly a few extra minutes each at the end of the session :) The session before ours over-ran so much that two of them came into our time, so there was no time left to buy :(

Next time apparently I should be doing more diagonals and side-to-side, and also some stability training. I do still feel quite wobbly in there, need to chill out more I think. And stop looking at the bloody floor :)

* diagonal movements
** move to a certain amount of specified places within a certain time

November 2017



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