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  • Short for pararescue jumper (see also pararescue and in the pipeline).

    "Between wars the Air National Guard occupies itself rescuing civilians on the 'high seas,' which means anything beyond the range of a Coast Guard H-3 helicopter. That, depending on the weather, is around two hundred miles offshore. The wartime mission of the Air National Guard is 'to save the life of an American fighting man,' which generally means jumping behind enemy lines to extract downed pilots. When the pilots go down at sea, the PJs, as they're known, jump with scuba gear. When they go down on glaciers, they jump with crampions and ice axes. When they go down in the jungle, they jump with two hundred feet of tree-rappelling line. There is, literally, nowhere on earth a PJ can't go. 'I could climb Everest with the equipment in my locker,' one of them said."

    —Sebastian Junger, The Perfect Storm, 1997 (NY: HarperCollins, 1999), 175

    September 8, 2009

  • Crampons, mebbe.

    September 8, 2009

  • I type 'em as I see 'em.

    September 9, 2009

  • Apparently it can also be spelled crampoon, which sounds way too silly for something that's supposed to keep you from sliding off the side of a mountain.

    September 9, 2009