50 Ways to Kill Your Mammy S1E5: Sharks, Lions and Ostriches, Oh My!



50 Ways to Kill Your Mammy - South Africa

If saying the Lord’s name aloud was an Olympic sport, Nancy would be the world record holder and a multi-time gold medallist. Faced with extreme stunts and wild animals on a trip to South Africa with her son Baz, Nancy couldn’t help but keep Jesus at the tip of her tongue.

As much as Nancy has thus far proved that her fears soon become outweighed by the beauty of an experience, she still goes into most adventures with a fearful heart. Uncertain of the unknown and the physical toll it may have on her, Nancy often needs to be persuaded to push her own boundaries.

Upon arrival in Cape Town, South Africa, Baz aims to get Nancy off the ground as soon as possible by strapping her in for a round of paragliding. With a fear of heights always nearby, Nancy needs much convincing to get up in the air and soar above this gorgeous area of South Africa. Even as her questions of protocol continue, Nancy is guided into the air and a flip is switched. She is quickly grabbed by the stunning view – even if a bit of motion sickness stirs her stomach.

Ultimately, Nancy described the event as “absolutely wonderful” and felt tremendous about having the courage to get in the air.

50 Ways to Kill Your Mammy - South Africa

Nancy’s next couple of experiences, however, don’t necessarily go as planned. First up, Baz and she travel to an ostrich farm where the duo prepare to ride a two-legged bird. Up first, Nancy is immediately panicked. She doesn’t feel stable, despite the fact that four people are holding her in place. Even though the ostrich will not reach its top speed of 70 km/h with Nancy strapped aboard, that doesn’t stop her from bailing out early.

To show her that the ride isn’t all that bad, Baz makes a go and immediately draws great laughter from Nancy as he tries to manoeuvre himself atop the ostrich. After a short spin around the pen, Baz’s butt hits the dirt and Nancy can’t help but be a little too delighted. This, however, prompts Nancy to give ostrich riding another chance. After some early reluctance and fear, Nancy cools down and goes around the pen as well. Again, this fear being overcome has brought a beaming smile to Mammy’s face.

As for bungee jumping off of the “world’s highest bridge jump,” that’s not happening – especially once Nancy finally grasps what bungee jumping is all about. Baz tries to work his magic to sway her, but wound up having better luck just taking the jump himself.

Next up, Baz makes a crucial mistake and introduces his Mammy to an activity that’ll allow her to exact revenge on him for years of disobedience and subjecting her to stressful moments – paintballing.

50 Ways to Kill Your Mammy - South Africa


No, Baz will not get a shot from behind the trigger, rather he must dodge his mother’s surprisingly solid shooting skills. When firing away, Nancy tells Baz “this one is for those tattoos” and “now you know the torture I went through.” Clearly, Nancy was ready for a release, but unfortunately Baz wasn’t ready for receiving several bruising paintball bullet marks all over his body.

After a quick trip to a local township where Nancy would cook sheep’s head and visit a local healer, she is back in the throws of risky action. This time, Baz takes Nancy to an animal enclosure where the two will get within feet of a bunch of lions. There are no cages or ability to make any sudden movements. While the tension could be felt at first, Mammy calmed right down while witnessing the exquisite sight of these incredible cats.

Eventually, Nancy is given the green light to pet the back of a lioness. While a little cautious at first, Mammy is soon in her element and “delighted with herself” as she begins to caress the fur. From being scared and gripping the walking stick tight to crouching closely next to lions, Nancy has sure come out of her shell for this special safari.

On their final day in South Africa, Baz dials up the danger a few more notches by encouraging his Mammy to join him on a boat and get into the water with sharks. To Baz’s surprise, the experience didn’t make Nancy jump out of her skin…or wetsuit.

50 Ways to Kill Your Mammy - South Africa

In the water for 20 minutes, Baz and Nancy don’t encounter any sharks. But, of course, the moment Mammy speaks about feeling cold and ready to come up to the boat, out pops a giant great white! While momentarily startling, Nancy is in awe of what’s on the other side of the cage. Considering that Nancy doesn’t know how to swim and she was willing to get so close to such a frightening animal, proves just how far she’s come on this journey.

“I feel bulletproof,” said Nancy after returning home from South Africa. “I feel on top of the world.”

On Monday, October 10 (8pm ET/5pm PT), tune in to the season one finale of “50 Ways to Kill Your Mammy!” Here, Baz and Nancy will visit Cambodia and will zipline in the jungle, go for a bumpy ride in a U.S. Army jeep, and find themselves marooned on a desert island with nothing but a chicken. 

Season two of “50 Ways to Kill Your Mammy” begins on Monday, October 17 at 8pm ET/5pm PT! 

-Adam Grant

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