Back in November 2007, I took a trip to Chicago O’Hare to take an up-close-and-personal tour of the O’Hare Modernization Project, which included the construction of the Runway 9L/27R. s part of that, I got to go into areas usually not open to the public. In the shot below, we were over near the old cargo area, which was going to be moved to accommodate the new runway. Enjoy!
I went to Austin, Texas, last month for a data journalism geek unconference. The first night we had dinner at Stubbs BBQ, and my dinner companion was Lauren Young, owner of Little Lamb web design (she’s currently redesigning this site). She started talking about how much fun she was having with Pinterest. For the uninitiated, check out this article in the Wall Street Journal profiling the website.
I love using Pinterest to show off many things, but my favorites are my aviation and travel boards. The first board I created was one with pictures of my beloved Boeing 747, which has 101 followers. My next board was Cool Aircraft Liveries, which has photos of some of the best aircraft paint jobs of the present and past, with 97 followers. I work across the street from Frederick Municipal Airport, so I created Seen At Frederick Airport (FDK).
I am a BIG fan of art deco airline/travel posters, and have them hanging in my home and office. My Art Deco Travel Posters has 92 followers. I created a board made up entirely of the graphics I use for my Strange But True Aviation News column. And then I have boards entitled Lord, I Was Born A Ramblin’ (wo)Man and Places I REALLY Want To See, with 94 followers each.
Tomorrow’s post will be on 10 folks you should be following on Pinterest. Not on Pinterest yet? Drop me an email at AuntBenet AT Gmail DOT com and I’ll get you an invite. Enjoy!
Editor’s note: kids, Aunt Benet is taking the week off to enjoy the holidays with the family. So please enjoy these best ofs this week. Happy Holidays!!
I know I usually do top aviation stories of the week, but I’m on travel, so I’m switching it up a bit. The announcement that Frontier Airlines is rolling out a new advertising campaign — complete with television commercials — made me remember how much I love a good carrier campaign.
I’ve always been a fan of good airline commercials. I like ones that make me laugh, that give me a sense of place and that show the wonderment of air travel. Below are links to 10 of my favorites, in no particular order. Which ones do you like? What did I miss?
Click HERE to see the commercials!
So I managed to finish my first week on the new job. LOVED it!! Now, onto the week’s aviation news.
- Ted Reed of The Street.com wrote two interesting airline pieces last week. In the first piece, he writes about how the lack of a deal between American Airlines and its pilots could cause the Dallas-based carrier to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, the last of the legacy carriers who have avoided this fate. In his second piece, Reed notes that Phoenix-based US Airways has two goals for 2012: cut its presence at New York’s LaGuardia Airport and upgrade its aging fleet.
- Plans for a supersonic business jet have been floating around for decades. The latest player to enter the market, U.K.-based HyperMach used last week’s Dubai Air Show to tell Aviation International News that its 20-seat SonicStar will be able to fly at speeds up to Mach 4.0, allowing to fly from New York to Dubai in only 2 hours 20 minutes.
- Regular readers know I am a fan — and student — of all things dealing with first and business class travel, as witnessed by the Facebook group I created: I Love Sitting In 1st/Biz Class (my Dec. 15 blog post about the group is here). So I’m passing along Jaunted’s review of Delta Air Lines’ Economy Comfort product. My view? I’d pay extra for the room.
- My 6-year-old daughter has become addicted to video Skype. She loves chatting with her grandparents and her aunt. So I’m betting she’d love being able to check in for her flight via Skype, which you can now do at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo International Airport, reports the Wall Street Journal.
- Trust me, I am NOT a regular reader of Perez Hilton. But I could not resist when I saw his hysterical rant about Spirit Airlines pop up on my Google Alerts. He rambles on about all the fees charged by Spirit. You won’t see me flying on that airline — ever — but I admire their business model. They charge ultra low fares, but charge fees up the ying yang. Don’t like the fees? Don’t fly the airline.
I’m a bit behind on my Airplane Geeks episodes, but I thoroughly enjoyed Episode 171, which featured former Air Force pilot Mark Jones. He had some great stories about training at Edwards AFB. At one time, my dad was deputy base commander there, and my sister worked on the flight line, so I was reliving all that when Mark was chatting.
And finally, I am a sucker for aviation/airline commercials. When they come on, I stop and watch in rapt fascination. Recently I saw one featuring the folks who build GE Aviation engines, where they got the chance to fly to Boeing Field Seattle to see their product hung on the 787 Dreamliner and actually fly on the 747, my favorite plane. And yes, I got a tear in my eye as they watched the fruits of their labor in total awe. Enjoy!
First, an apology. For some reason, Friday’s Strange But True Aviation News didn’t post (despite me writing it) thanks to some glitch I’m still trying to figure out. I’ll work out the kinks, and we’ll have it on Friday. Now, onto the news!
- Guy Norris of Aviation Week blogged about an uncontained engine failure on a Delta Air Lines Boeing 747 flying from Detroit to Tokyo. His Things with Wings post contains some dramatic pictures of the engine after the failure.
- I really enjoyed this CNN story — Nerve-racking ‘go-arounds’ routine for pilots — for two reasons. One, it’s a great primer on what happens when a plane has to do a go-around. Two, it was written by Brett “Cranky Flier” Snyder, and quotes my friend Mark Rogers.
- Speaking of Mark, I thought of him when I read this story — O’Hare Worker Hurt in Baggage Incident — on the NBC Chicago website. The story is about how an industrial battery packed in checked luggage on a United Airlines flight from Lafayette, La., that stopped at Chicago O’Hare where the accident happened. Mark has done a lot of work on this particular issue.
- When Airbus announced back in December 2000 that it was launching the A380 double-decker jumbo jet, I remember hearing all kinds of possibilities for the plane, from bowling alleys (not yet) to showers (see Emirates). The Airbus website says the jumbo jet can “seat 525 passengers in a comfortable three-class configuration, and up to 853 in a single-class configuration.” Transero isn’t quite at 853 seats, but says it will put in 700 seats on its recently ordered A380s, reports Reuters.
- We’ve all done it (unless we fly Southwest Airlines) — start flocking toward the jetway when the gate agent announces boarding for a flight. We wait anxiously as they call the premium passengers, folks needed assistance, families with small children and travelers seated in exit rows. Then we make the mad dash onto the plane to get that valuable overhead bin space. The New York Times has an article about what airlines are doing to tame the boarding process. I, for one, am happy to pay a fee that allows me to board early in the process.
In other news, I’m now doing freelance work for Aviation International News, so please go over and check out what I’m doing. Again, I’m still trying to catch up on my Airplane Geek podcast episodes, and I really enjoyed Episode 170 – GE Aviation Looks to the Future.
Finally, I’ll leave you with a question. JetBlue recently got a rare PR black eye after stranding passengers for seven hours on a plane parked at Hartford, Conn.’s Bradley International Airport. Below is a 1:18-minute video from COO Rob Maruster on the incident. Was it enough or should the airline have done more? See my poll, below.
Back in July, I got to spend the day at Chicago O’Hare International Airport to help United Airlines celebrate with Tom Stuker, who flew his 10 millionth Mileage Plus mile. You can read my Aviation Week Things With Wings blog post on the event here.
One of the gifts given to Stuker by United was his name on a Boeing 747. Up until then, I had been a real critic of what I called the new United Continental “Frankenlivery.” But once I saw it on the 747, I changed my mind. Enjoy!