/ aviation

Oshkosh Report

Well, I'm back. Been back, in fact. But I spent three great days at the greatest airshow & aviation event in the world (and then a day wondering just how in the hell we managed to screw up commercial air travel so wholly and completely).

Highlights:

    -- Seeing my New Jersey pilot pals again

    -- Warbirds, including a one-of-a-kind P-51B modified with a dual cockpit; five B-17s; a P-47; Corsairs; at least 25 Mustangs; a modified twin Beech bomber trainer; and several Sabrejets.

    -- Seaplane pilots corn roast dinner on the first night.

    -- Drunken stroll through the airport after dark, following aforementioned corn roast dinner (excellent hilarious pictures unpublishable).

    -- Homebuilts. It was in 2003 when I was first exposed to the amazing workmanship of the homebuilder community, and the possibilities of building your own airplane. This year was a confirmation that this is what I need to be doing, someday.

    -- F-15 flybys during Chuck Yeager's lecture

Lowlights:
    -- Chuck Yeager's lecture, wherein he praised da president's work on the so-called war against terror, "despite what the stupid Democrats say"; the derogatory comment getting a chillingly warm reception.

    -- Harrier demos. I get it. It goes straight up. But does it have to be so friggin' loud?

    -- My flight(s) home, with the attendant standby cattlecalls, ridiculous TSA patdowns (Hey Chuck, when was the last time YOU flew commercial, anyway?!?) and unbelievable travel times.

    -- The realization that I am a lousy photographer of airshows. It's actually pretty hard to get a lot of what I wish to document with a basic camera; planes are large and often fast, and both attributes make it difficult to capture certain scenes without special equipment. But I got a few winners, and I will post them soon.