Tagged: Beirut Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Michael Krakovskiy 2:23 pm on January 23, 2003 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , Beirut, , , Dassault Mirage III, , , Li'l Abner, Lockheed Martin, Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird, low-oil-pressure light, Malta, Pet skunk, , , Signals intelligence, Skunk Works, , , , William Burk Jr.   

    ACH! BONJOURRRRRR! You Cheese-Eating Surrender Monkeys! 

    A while back I finished an absolutely amazing book about Lockheed Martin Skunk Works. It’s by Ben Rich and it’s called “Skunk Works: A Personal Memoir of My Years at Lockheed“. I’ll write more about that book later.

    Here’s an amusing little anecdote from Lt. Colonel William Burk Jr., an SR-71 Blackbird pilot.

    “In the fall of ’82, I flew from Mildenhall on a mission o Lebanon in response to the Marine barrack bombing. President Reagan ordered photo coverage of ill the terrorist bases in the region. The French refused to allow us to overfly, so our mission was to refuel off the south coast of England.”

    “We completed our pass over Beirut and turned toward Malta, when I got a warning low-oil-pressure light on my right engine. Even though the engine was running fine I slowed down and lowered our altitude and made a direct line for England. We decided to cross France without clearance instead of going the roundabout way. We made it almost across, when I looked out the left window and saw a French Mirage III sitting ten feet off my left wing. He came up on our frequency and asked us for our Diplomatic Clearance Number. I had no idea what he was talking about, so I told him to stand by. I asked my backseater, who said, “Don’t worry about it. I just gave it to him.” What he had given him was “the bird’ with his middle finger. I lit the afterbumers and left that Mirage standing still. Two minutes later, we were crossing the Channel. ”

  • Michael Krakovskiy 1:12 am on December 10, 2002 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Beirut, , , Literary Machines, low carb food, , Middle Eastern cuisine, , , , Shawarma, , T. Edward Damer, ,   

    Lunch notes 

    I’ve got mail!

    Today’s arrivals: Ted Nelson’s(of Project Xanadu fame) “Literary Machines” and T. Edward Damer’s “Attacking Faulty Reasoning”.

    I wanted to get “Literary Machines” for a long time. Ironically for a book about the future of books, it’s rather rare. I paid $35, which is a pretty good deal (I snapped the book up as soon as it came up in my abebooks.com notifications). It’s the second edition though. I’ll write more about Nelson when I have the time.

    I am so happy that I can afford about 70% of all the books that I want :)

    For lunch I had some shawarma from “Bread from Beirut“, a very nice middle eastern restaurant. I wonder if it’s possible to buy one of those shawarma slabs and keep it in a fridge. Shawarma is a great low carb food.

    Lunch is over. Back to codin’.

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