Nik Wallenda needs no harness
ABC wrong to institute safety measures for Niagara Falls tightrope walk
David Duprey/ASSOCIATED PRESS
Nik Wallenda is being harnessed by ABC television
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
Wednesday, May 23, 2012
The sober governments of New York State and Ontario, Canada, gave daredevil Nik Wallenda permission to walk on a tightrope across the Niagara Falls.
This was a splendid idea in the tradition of Philippe Petit’s 1974 walk between the twin towers and the Great Blondin’s 1859 jaunt over the same falls, about which more later.
To finance his walk across the falls, Wallenda enlisted the ABC television network, which plans a prime-time reality show. Except now, ABC has wussed that the stunt can’t go forward unless Wallenda wears a safety harness.
As B.B. King immortally sang, the thrill is gone.
If ABC insists on a harness, the network could just as well recruit ordinary Joes and Janes to try their balance in a program that would put “Fear Factor” to shame.
Then again, Wallenda could decamp for a pay-per-view special that would surely bring in monster revenue. Or, if he’s really into raising bucks, he should visit Jamie Dimon or Lloyd Blankfein on Wall Street, where banks have figured out how to peddle financial instruments pegged to anything. They could expect brisk trading in Wallenda futures — or no-futures.
As for the Great Blondin, he crossed the falls — harnessless — on stilts, on a bicycle, blindfolded, carrying his manager on his back and, perhaps most impressively, while cooking an omelet.
Now that would be reality TV.
Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/opinion/nik-wallenda-harness-article-1.1082827#ixzz1vqTW9S9H