Sport: The Ultimate Leap of Faith

In bungee madness, life hangs by a thread

It beats just about everything for sheer hair-raising excitement. It offers danger, exhilaration, suspense, terror and fast-moving scenery. It is called bungee jumping, and it is the latest sports craze among the young, particularly in California, New Zealand and France. Many American TV viewers were introduced to it last month by a controversial (and now discontinued) Reebok sneaker ad that showed two men leaping from a bridge: in the final scene, one jumper dangles safely from an elastic cord while the other, wearing a different brand of shoes, has tumbled out of them -- presumably to his death.

Once known only...

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