Air-Minded: Goin’ Commando

Tomorrow morning I’ll guide another walking tour group through the Pima Air & Space Museum. It’ll be a red-letter day: the docent team leader and volunteer supervisor will evaluate my skills; if I do well I’ll become the museum’s newest certified walking tour docent.

As you might imagine, boning up is the order of the day. I’m heading out to the museum later this morning to walk through the exhibits and make sure I have my flow down.  Gettin’ my flow down.  Gonna be down with the flow.

Strange the tangents you go off on preparing for something like this.  One of the aircraft I plan to highlight during my tour of the WWII hangars is the Curtis C-46 Commando, an enormous twin-engine transport.

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Curtis C-46 Commando (photo: Paul Woodford)

I learned it was originally designed on spec as a high-altitude pressurized airliner.  Curtis didn’t get the number of orders it needed to put it into production, but the military saved the day when it decided the beast was just what it needed to move troops and cargo.  I had a vague memory that the military version was unpressurized, but could I say so confidently?  After an hour’s research, I decided I could — the military C-46 (and they were all military, originally) was not pressurized.  This is the kind of homework I’ve been doing.  Multiply by 30-odd aircraft.


Donna came home from a shopping trip with a nice recliner, and now I’ve got the hots for one.  I’ve been wanting to move my comfy reading chair from the family room to a quieter location, away from the flat-screen TV that dominates the family room and, now that our daughter is living with us again, is constantly on.  There’s space in the master bedroom, but I need a replacement chair for the family room and a recliner seems like the ticket.

Sticker shock ensues.  Donna’s a woman of normal size, so the $299 recliner she found on sale at T.J. Maxx … which, serendipitously, was covered in a fabric she liked on sight … was perfect as is.  I need a chair with a higher than normal sitting height and a tall back, which immediately puts it in the $500-$700 range.  We found a chair that meets my needs but Donna doesn’t like the fabric and wants to order it with custom upholstery.  Suddenly we’re talking $1000 or more.  Looks like my reading room will remain a long-term goal.

Speaking of television, Polly put on Buffy the Vampire Slayer last night.  Not the TV series, but the original movie.  Cute, but halfway through the 30-year-old-actresses-pretending-to-be-high-school-girls do a hip-shaking cheer at a high school basketball game that goes like this:

How funky is your chicken?
It’s loose as a goose.
So come on all you Hog fans,
Now shake your caboose!

Talk about an earworm … that little number’s settled in for the duration.  I just hope I don’t break into it in the middle of my tour tomorrow.


Speaking of going commando (yes, I know what that means, and yes, I know it’s only tangentially related to what follows, for which I apologize in advance and promise never ever to write about again), it seems Anthony Weiner shaves his pubic hair.  Not the most delicate of subjects, I know, but a tipping point for me.  Shaving pubic hair is a porn thing, and I really really hate the intrusion of porn cliches and memes and values into normal daily life.  You can’t say “fluff” without someone giving you the knowing eye, or “blow” or “teabag” or “come.”  Enough already.  Porn needs to get its unnaturally pink and shaven self back into the damn closet … and so does Anthony Weiner.

© 2011 – 2017, Paul Woodford. All rights reserved.


2 thoughts on “Air-Minded: Goin’ Commando

  • It’s about damn time you paid attention to Joss Whedon, creator, writer director, composer, and all around genius of both Buffy and Firefly. And tell Polly congrats for me. Of course, now you’ll have to start Netflixing the series. In the series, Buffy turns up as a sophomore at Sunnydale High (read: Santa Barbara, hence all those rooftop shots of red tiles), and her new watcher is Anthony Stewart Head, plucked fresh from that Tasters’ Choice ad/melodrama. And this time Whedon get to go all out. Seems he’s also (what a surprise) a P. G. Wodehouse fan. One of my favorite lines occurs when the students are discussing a class project and the girls claim the male classmate, Xander, cheated. Giles (the watcher/librarian) concedes “I suppose there was a certain Machevellian ingenuity to your transgression.” At which point Xander says, “I resent that!” (Pause) “Or possibly thank you.”

    So please tell Polly that I said she now has to get you hooked on the series. Start Netflixing. The series ran for seven years, although the first season was short because Fox had commitment issues. It one of those rare shows where a subordinate character ends up walking off with the show. James Marsters’ performance as Spike was so brilliant, so funny, and so deliciously twisted that Joss Whedon finally had to transfer him to “Angel” after the end of “Buffy.”

    And then you can start watching Firefly, the one Fox cancelled before the last two episodes ever aired. Typical.

  • Re your checkout: Knock ’em dead. Fascinating information about the C-46. I love stuff like that.

    Re Anthony Weiner: I would be ecstatically happy if I didn’t hear that poor, deluded twit’s name for the rest of the year. Shaving pubic hair? What’s the point? Guess I’m just old-fashioned. I have a wonderfully, hilariously funny and indecent story along the same lines, and involving how men lie and what they think women will actually believe. But that’s why we have email.

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