Saturday, December 10, 2011
Tonight I watched the annual Fort Lauderdale Boat Parade with my family. We were on my brother's small boat which he anchored in one of the side canals of the Intracoastal. Although we had front row seats, it wasn't all that exciting. Maybe I had seen this parade too many times and I was tired of the same thing every year. But wait! There WAS something new. Between two garishly decorated yachts, was a person flying what appeared to be a jet pack!
I did some Googling and the company that makes it is JetLev.com. I found a number of videos on YouTube including this one. How does it work? In a nutshell, you are tethered to a small boat by a flexible hose. The boat has a 200 horsepower engine that pumps water through the hose to your jet pack. The water spraying out of your jet pack lifts you off the water. Ever play with a Water Wiggle when you were a kid? Well its basically the same thing, except you sit on top of it and control it. Sadly, it costs a little bit more than a Water Wiggle. Prices start at $99,500.00 USD.
In case you're wondering, those weird colored shapes to the right of the guy with the jet pack are the result of "lens flare". Lens flare is caused by a bright light (usually the sun) pointing directly at the camera, that makes reflections on the glass elements inside the lens. The spotlight pointing at me from the lower left is causing the lens flare in this photo.