17 November, 2007

Go Go Gadget Kucinich, Planespotting

Looks like Dennis the Menace managed to Ron-paul the Kos post-debate poll:

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2007/11/15/22252/245


And now for something slightly substantive. I'm sitting between gates 29 and 30 of terminal 1 of KSFO, San Francisco International Airport. The airport in general and this terminal in particular seem to have been designed by someone with a real love of flying: directly in front of me is the Bravo-Hotel taxiway, followed by 1L/19R and 1R/19L, and a view of approaches, plus the end of 10R/28L, approaches from the southeast. In the distance, the San Mateo Bridge, any frequent fliers favorite approach landmark coming out of 4000 feet. A Quantas B74 just taxied by on followed by a CO B73 and an AA B76.

That I can't, whenever I want to, take the train in from the city into the BART station located just South of United International in terminal 3, walk through security and spend an afternoon watching planes is probably the most annoying feature of our new security apparatus post 9/11, more annoying that the degrading shoe ritual, or not being able to smuggle booze on-board (I used to put Jim Beam in a ginger ale bottle). Okay, the booze thing is the most annoying part.

A JAL B74, JA8076, taxis by followed by a Ted Airbus, then an AA B71, N964TW(?). Ted is now on his take-off roll, as a two-engine wide-body floats down onto 28L, probably a B77.

It's 10:34, I'm listening to Norcal approach on iTunes and looking at my battery I know I'll have to plug in and charge soon, which I dread, since that will take me away from my view of the runways; despite the fact that I am baking in the sun.

I board at 11:55, an Airbus 319. I don't have a tail number just yet because my equipment is not arrived at the gate yet. She's going to PHX and then on to EWR, but I will part company with her in Arizona for another A319 destined for beautiful Cleveland, Ohio -- the Forrest City -- home of one Dennis Kucinich, the next President of the United States, and one Michael Symon, the next Iron Chef America.

When Kucinich wins, I'll write him a letter and ask him if there is anything he can do about opening up our airports for observation again.

ETA - 11/18/2007

Tail numbers were N833AW and N828AW respectively.

While whoever designed KSFO has a real love of air travel, the designers of KPHX do not. In fact, it is possible that they hate humanity itself. It felt like the airport was intended to be a giant particle accelerator with evenly placed spokes as terminals. At least, that is what it felt like for the 1/2 mile hike from the A terminal to the C terminal, where, mind you, jets of the same carrier and same type were "docking" (Phoenix Airport -- the "Sky Harbor", as they fashion themselves).

As you can see from this link, its really a series of different length particle accelerators. Regardless, its ugly. And "Harbor" is not the first thing that comes to mind when I walk around in the airport, nor is it the first thing that comes to mind when I am in Phoenix, smack in the middle of a dessert. In fact, if I think of harbors at all, it is that I would much rather be at one as opposed to being in the middle of a fucking desert.

I do not see the appeal of Arizona, but I am not a well-to-do baby boomer with burgeoning interests in sepia and sienna toned faux-Native spiritual "connectedness with the land." If you really felt connected to the land, perhaps you wouldn't choose to live somewhere without an abundant nearby source of fresh water.

Being there made me think of a Coen Brother's film, title slightly misspelled. I will leave it as an exercise to the reader to dwell on what I mean by that.

ETA - 11/19/2007

Dennis the Menace does it again: http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2007/11/15/politics/main3508272.shtml