And only five hours late!

I wish I could be more interesting about it, but it’s late and the hotel bed is calling to me, muffled though its voice may be under a vasty mountain of pillows.

More later, although posting Friday will be scarce because I will mostly be in meetings. Yes, I am doing vaguely grown-up stuff. But only vaguely.

13 Comments on “Landed”

  1. Night, John. Thank you for reminding me to NOT route through O’Hare, deepest circle of airport hub hell.

    And have a wonderful morning.

  2. You know, back until around 10 years ago I flew on commercial airlines once or twice a year, and hardly ever had a delayed flight or lost luggage. Then, after not flying for a long time, I made 3 trips in the last year, and *every single time the flight was delayed/cancelled, or they lost my luggage, or both*. And, other people I know who fly frequently (in one case, pretty much every week) say that for the last several months, *they have not had a single flight go without a hitch*. Is the airline industry coming apart at the seams or something? Or was I just lucky before?

  3. Careful, John. You start doing vaguely grown up stuff, and next thing you know, ties will start winding themselves around your neck five days a week. Your sense of humor becomes stunted, and eventually we have to send someone around to revoke your geek card. I suggest jumping on the bed a few times just because.

  4. changterhune – Before you hear lies from Chang Terhune himself, we thought we’d tell you the truth: without us, his old action figures, he’d be nowhere. He loved science fiction from way back and began reading it at an early age, but it was through us that he acted it all out. That’s what led to the writing. He watched a lot of science fiction shows like Star Trek, U.F.O, and movies, too. But we were always there to do his bidding. And it’s like they say: you always forget about the little people on your way up. Oh, the 70’s and early 80’s with him were good times! He’d use these blocks and make all the crazy buildings for us to be in his stories. I gotta say the kid’s imagination was pretty damn fertile. Oh, he had friends, but they just weren’t into it like him. He was like the Lance Armstrong of action figures. And of science fiction. At first, when he began writing in the eighth grade, we didn’t mind. He still made time for us. And we knew that when he was holding us in his sweaty little hands and he got that far off look in his eye, he’d come back to burying us in the back yard or - god forbid! – blowing us up with firecrackers. But it was worth it for a part in one of those stories. We loved him for it. He kept us around even when we were minus a leg or two - or even a head. In that mind of his, he found a use for all of us. Then he discovered girls. October, 1986. It was like the end of the world. One day we’re standing in the middle of this building block creation he’d pretended was some marble city on a planet near Alpha Centauri and the next we were stuck in a box in the closet. Not even a “See ya later!” Nope, it was into the closet, then we heard some high-pitched girly-giggles then silence. We didn’t see him for years. We got word about him once in a while. Heard he took up writing, but it was crap like “The Breakfast Club” only with better music. We couldn’t believe it. Not Charlie. What happened to those aliens with heads he’d sculpted out of wax? Spaceships? Those complex plots? All gone. For what? You guessed it: Girls. Emotions. “Serious fiction.” I tell you, it was like hearing Elvis had left the building. During our two decade exile in the closet, we heard other things about him. He went to college. He wrote a lot, but not much he really liked. We knew it even then. It was like he didn’t dare write science fiction. Some of us had lost hope and just lay there. Others kept vigil, hoping for a day we didn’t dare speak about. Then we heard he’d stopped writing in 1996. Did he come to reclaim us? No. He took up music for ten years or so. He took up yoga. Once in a while, he’d visit us in the closet. But it was half-hearted. His mind was elsewhere. Then one day, he really did come back for us. One second we’re in the dark and the next thing we know we’re in a car headed for Massachusetts. Suddenly we got a whole shelf to ourselves out in broad daylight! Then he bought a bunch of others form some planet called Ebay. He’d just sit and stare at us with that old look. But why were we suddenly back in the picture? He had a wife now, who didn’t mind that he played with us. So what had happened? Turns out he’d never forgotten about those stories. He’d been thinking about all of us and the stories he’d made up and then remembered he’d been a writer once. From the shelf we could see him typing away. Before long he’s got a whole novel together! Then he’s working on another one. Word is there are two more in the planning stages! Some short stories, too! It’s good to see him using his imagination again. Its good to know he never abandoned us. He returned to his true love of science fiction. We hear the stories are pretty good. Someday we’ll get one of the cats to score us a copy of the manuscript. Man, it’s good to be out of the damn closet! --- I'm smarter than you I'm harder than you I'm better than you I'm just raw I'm hotter than you More popular than you More clever than you And goshdarn it, people like me I'm smarter than you I'm harder than you I'm better than you I'm just raw I'm hotter than you More popular than you More clever than you And goshdarn it, people like me
    Chang in pain

    Is it true that flights in and out of O’hare are generally scary? The one time I flew in I could sense the pilot having a tough time trying to get us in despite the winds off the lake. it almost seemed like he cut the engines at one point and just dove us towards the runway. And leaving was the opposite, as if he just opened the engines up full bore until we we so high up the winds couldn’t get us.

    In general, I hate flying. Flying into Chicago seems like salt on the wound.

  5. Brett L:

    Ironically, the last time I wore ties five days a week was in high school, when I was many things, but grown-up was not one of them.

  6. Chang in pain,

    I’m not totally sure but I think the coasting-in and rocketing-out are required by noise abatement ordinances.

    Blame the people who built homes near the existing airport and then complained about the noise.

    John, since you are vaguely grownup do you still check under the hotel mattress for pron?

    No need to answer here of course.

  7. John, just be glad you were only 5 hours late. My brother-in-law came to Chicago yesterday and arrived 12 hours late.

    @Chang, I live in Chicago and have _never_ had a problem flying out of O’hare. I don’t know if I’m just incredibly lucky, or if you only hear about how bad it is because they people who have good experiences don’t blog about it. :)

  8. @ Chang,

    A lof of it has to do with noise ordinances and abatements.

    The worst is Orange County, in California. There, planes cannot start theie engines until 7AM, so planes that are loaded prior to that are towed to the apron.

    Then, depending on how the wind is swirling around, if you take off towards the hills, you go into about a 40 degree climb, bank, and then in the middle of this maneuver, the engines rev down. If you didn’t know any better, you’d swear something was going wrong.


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