Thursday, September 22, 2005


The airliner circled Southern California for hours, crippled by a faulty landing gear, while inside its cabin 140 passengers watched their own life-and-death drama unfolding on live television.
Now that's surreal. And probably gut wrenching for the passengers listening to Miles O'Brian tell you exactly how spectacularly firey your impending death might be, Sanjay Gupta telling you how the LA coroner might identify your crispy corpse, with maybe a chaser of Britt Hume explaining why it's not Bush's fault.
Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, who spoke with the pilot, identified him as Scott Burke and praised him for the calm he showed during the flight.

"He joked that he was sorry he put the plane down 6 inches off the center line," Villaraigosa said.
I bet he wasn't joking. If it were me, I would have explained that I did it so as not to ruin the stripes' paint. Nice landing though. That's why you want your pilots sober: any lush can fly a plane, it's dealing with the abnormalities when you didn't need that 14th scotch this morning.


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