The Proximal Lexicon


Few things in the world cause certain folk to feel such disgust as the inappropriate use of the word ‘proxy’. This innocent word was seized upon by braggart wingsuit fliers in approximately 2006 and has since been shamelessly used to evoke a familiarity and expertness with flying wingsuits close to terrain. For those whose minds have been sufficiently corroded by self induced adrenaline exposure and repeated masturbation to youtube BASE jumping videos, the shortening of the word ‘proximity’ to ‘proxy’ is probably a logical and proud adaptation. In fact, using the word proximity to denote a nearness to terrain is commonly considered expert sounding enough, but the use of the slang (code) word proxy is meant to show that you are in fact so extreme and so regularly flying so close to terrain that a four syllable word is far too cumbersome, and therefore a more palatable and familiar sounding term is needed.

A beginning wingsuit base jumper might describe the flight of a tall and proud Wampire pilot by saying, in a tone of awe and respect, “He was proximity flying in Italy and he was so close to the wall that he touched his own shadow.” That same tall and proud wingsuit pilot might describe his own flight as such: “I exited, and after achieving full flight with my Wampire 9 in less than twenty seven meters, I flew proxy to the left wall and then came back to the right wall, where I flew proxy on that one, and then I flew proxy on the left wall again, you know, and then I flew proxy on the trees and then I pulled at like 500 meters over the landing because you know I don’t like to pull low, because I don’t need to, since I’m a radical proxy flier.” Or, also, “Dude did you see my SICK PROXY LINE, bro?!”

As if just listening to this person’s repeated oral ejaculation would not be bad enough, to listen to them stroke and abuse a noun by poorly misusing it as a verb is intensely disgusting. The only thing worse is to actually hear someone address themselves as ‘A Proxy Flier’.

Proxy, a noun, is defined as a person acting as a substitute for another person, usually with permission. It should not, in any case, be used as a substitute for the word proximity, or even to attempt to shorten the word proximal, as in, “I flew proxy to that mountain goat, which then shat itself and fell down the cliff face.”

Wingsuit pilots who are most likely to make such a pathetic lingual blunder can be accurately stereotyped as either arrogant fools, who use the term with proud insistence, or innocent suckers who have allowed themselves to be drawn into the shameful orgy of bragging.

If you belong in the former category, and have been consciously abusing this innocent word already for several years, then you deserve no quarter.

However, if you have been unwittingly tricked into thinking that this word is the only way to communicate about the exciting and wonderfully foolish activity of flying wingsuits near to terrain, then there is still hope for you. I recommend an Oxford English Dictionary (http://www.oed.com/) and a healthy dose of humility combined with a total abstinence from BASE jumping movies for at least seven days. I also highly recommend that you read every article at www.dorkzonehero.net (Alas, he deleted the site! Go find his comments on SkydivingMovies.com) with the intent to understand that no BASE jumper should take themselves too seriously; Because to engage in this sport on any level is to live such a narcissistic and childish existence that you forfeit the right to a feeling of superiority over another person based upon your willingness to risk your life to a greater degree while flying your wingsuit.