Sunday, February 02, 2003

WHERE WERE YOU WHEN - Just what we didn't need, another "Where were you when..." moment. Not this kind, at least. Yesterday morning I checked the local forecast on The Weather Channel, then tapped the channel down button to start seeing what else was on. The next channel down is MSNBC, and they were running video of what looked like a bolide. For a second I thought I was seeing a real-world version of the New York sequence from Armageddon. Then they started talking about the shuttle, and I knew something was seriously wrong. The shuttle contains some impressive technology, but I've always had a feeling that those tiles were a weak link.

Back in April 1981 I was among the several million people present at the first shuttle launch. That first one was, of course, Columbia.

I started another ground school last week. I haven't gotten around to telling this class that every time I teach a ground school, something "interesting" happens in aviation or a related field. The big Oklahoma City tornado happened on a night I taught weather. The Concorde crash, the F-117 being shot down over Kosovo (or Bosnia, whichever), 11 Sept 2001 - all coincidentally happened during my classes.

Another coincidence (or maybe it's just our local TV guide production, which has had errors in the past) - FX had Armageddon on last night's schedule.

More TV fun - Fox News, which had been doing like we'd expect and covering every last detail of the Columbia catastrophe in excruciating detail over and over and over, last night (a little before 2200 CST) ran one of those "Vacation in Florida" commercials. What's one of the little "stuff to see and do in Florida" snippets in the commercial? Ayup - one each shuttle launch.

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