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This farcical little airplane story gave me a chilling deja vu as to American politics…

Passengers stop flight after drunk pilot causes panic

The words in the headline were spoken by the pilot after the passengers rebellion overpowered the attempts to stiffle it

His slurred and garbled comments ahead of a flight from Moscow to New York convinced passengers that he was drunk. When he apparently switched from Russian into unintelligible English, fear turned to revolt.

“It took him three attempts to say the words ‘duration of flight’.

Sounds like a synopsis of the Bush years, complete with the propaganda

One sought to reassure them by announcing that it was “not such a big deal” if the pilot was drunk because the aircraft practically flew itself.

and the threats of reprisal

Flight attendants initially ignored passengers’ complaints and threatened to expel them from the Boeing 767 jet unless they stopped “making trouble”.

But eventually it ended happily:

“At first, he was looking at us like we were crazy. Then, when we wouldn’t back down, he said ‘I’ll sit here quietly in a corner. We have three more pilots. I won’t even touch the controls, I promise’.”

However, in my simile, looks like we the passengers of this big flight took advice from the same people who said the aircraft flies itself – all we needed was hope they said. Who needs “ready on day one” – in fact it’s racist to even think experience has anything to do with it. So, we got this guy now

So, fasten your seat belts.

A bill delaying it passed

The bill delaying the changeover to June 12 from February 17 cleared the U.S. House of Representatives in a 264-158 vote and followed Senate passage last month.

It seems the Government…ran out of coupons:

About 13 million people hold expired $40 coupons the government was providing to offset the costs of converter boxes needed for older televisions, according to Consumers Union. The government ran out of coupons last month and millions of requests for coupons are pending.

As I was wondering for the excuse for this forced marketing f technology, the article provided some answers

Airwaves to be vacated by television broadcasters after the switch were purchased mostly by AT&T Inc and Verizon Communications Inc in an auction that raised about $19 billion for the U.S. government.

Both companies agreed to a short one-time delay and their licenses will be extended under the bill.

Well, god forbid the FISA little helpers be further inconvenienced.

Funny how this news is nowhere to be seen…

Such are the plans to celebrate a beloved New York excentric’s passing this week

The city lost one its quintessential characters Sunday when the enigmatic Joe Ades died after decades spent selling his $5 vegetable peelers at the Union Square Greenmarket, and other locations around town. Ades, born in Manchester, England, was an unavoidable and entertaining presence at Union Square, and eventually became something of a media darling for his loud, hypnotic patter; his distinctive suits; and his incongruous Park Avenue address

We’ll bring our two peelers we bought from him. When I bought the first one, downtown, I tried to interrupt his show (I hadn’t realized it was much more than a pitch). I got properly scolded when finally paying for it: “Why don’t you get one for a friend too – if you have any, that is”. It’s the one my daughter uses exclusively.

So, if you are in NYC this Saturday, come to Union Square South at 1 PM.

Februrary 4, 2009

To honor the passing of Joe Ades, the widely-renowned and much-beloved carrot-peeler peddler who frequented the Union Square Greenmarket, we invite the New York City community to join us in remembering his presence and his terrific salesmanship. We will gather at the statue on the south side of Union Square park on Saturday, February 7th, at 1pm and invite everyone to bring memories, anecdotes, and of course, a peeler and carrots or potatoes. As we join together to peel, we will create a temporary vegetable memorial that will incorporate stories and photos that the community brings to share.

on the south steps of Union Square,
Saturday, February 7th, 2009 at 1:00 PM.
Bring a peeler, carrots and potatoes.
Traditional memorial offerings are also welcome.


Not Your Sweetie

February 2009