- On Monday I went flying; during the flight, I shot some landings at the Hayward airport; it is more or less right across the bay from the Palo Alto airport. As I was flying downwind for an approach to land on runway 28L, I heard an unusual radio call: “Hayward Tower, Boeing 5017 November…” My CFI and I looked at each other, wondering what kind of aircraft it was. Turns out it was the Experimental Aircraft’s B-17, Aluminum Overcast, come to town for a visit! (Their tour is this weekend, when I’ll be in Huntsville, so I did the virtual tour instead. So should you.) He landed while I followed in trail, but it took him long enough to clear the runway that I had to go around– so I got to overfly a B-17. Bonus: I could see our friendly neighborhood Zeppelin about 10nm to the north as I executed the go-around. Some flights just can’t be improved on…
- …but others can. Case in point: the Indian Air Force has purchased 872 MiG fighters since 1966. Since then, they have crashed 482 of them, killing 171 pilots. That’s a loss rate of 55%! I can’t find official data on accident rates (as opposed to total numbers of airframes lost) for the IAF, though an article (whose link I lost) cites a loss rate of somewhere between 0.83 and 1.07 per 10,000 hours. For comparison, see the USAF mishap data from 1947 to 2006 (see the “Destroyed” column), which appears to be calculated per 100,000 hours. It’s surprising both that the IAF has such high total losses and that their mishap rate seems to be pretty steady. (Interesting side note: the USAF apparently flew 25% more hours during “peacetime” in FY 1993 than in the midst of the Afghanistan and Iraq wars in FY 2007!)
- From the “could you possibly find a more obvious research result?” department: “…The surprising result is that relationships in which the man is happier than the woman are significantly more likely to come to an end relative to relationships in which both partners are similarly unhappy.” You don’t say. In other news: water is still wet, and Generalissimo Francisco Franco is still dead.
- I was excited about Bo’s mention of Mad Anthony’s XXXTRA HOT Private Reserve hot sauce… but for $10 a bottle plus $10 shipping, Im thinking I’ll pass. That’s a high barrier to entry just to try it. On the other hand… mmm, delicious spice… so I might have to get some anyway. (Related note: just ordered a refill of Blair’s Death Rain habanero chips, yum!)
- Great persuasive essay from Brian about willpower and desire in relation to fitness. Go read it. And then stay out of the snack closet.
- Attention Tony: now that I know of the existence of The Aviator’s Guide to Ireland my interest in visiting Ireland has gone up about five notches.
- I wish I could convince Amazon to stop cluttering up their home page with top-center ads for womens’ clothing and the Kindle Fire. I don’t want either of them, nor am I likely to suddenly change my mind; if they put up ads for things I might actually buy it would be better for both of us.