This was a nice moment at an NFL pre-season game the other day. A returning soldier surprising his cheerleader-wife at a St. Louis Rams game. It screams “America!” And also: “Football!”
Deadspin is pushing back on this one, however, suggesting that because the soldier didn’t serve in a war zone — he was in South Korea — it’s a disingenuous, scripted moment. Also, he’s rich; he’s part of the ginormous Busch family. And she’s not so much a cheerleader as she is a Marine also. And her mother is running for state representative; she is now using the moment as part of a political ad.
It makes sense that an NFL team would go out of its way to do something special for a member of one of the most powerful families in America instead of, say, a local grunt who’d served in a combat zone, because these reunions really aren’t orchestrated and televised for the benefit of the soldiers and families involved. They are done because cozying up to the military is a good way for the NFL to market itself as a noble civic endeavor while making some extra money, and because the American football-loving public loves a chance to share in a bit of un-earned catharsis—watching two smiling, photogenic soldiers embrace in relief is a great way to forget about all the bodies that have piled up. If a given reunion happens to basically be a viral political ad—and given that Candace Ruocco Valentine is not only the member of two connected families and a former White House intern but the holder of both a JD and a doctorate in public policy analysis, one suspects that this moment may be shared on some campaign page of her own before too long—it’s hard to be too put out. That is, after all, what they all are.
Candace acknowledged to FoxNews she knew her husband had returned to the United States from his long deployment overseas, but didn’t know if he’d get leave from his unit to attend her game.
It took almost a year, but the National Transportation Safety Board has completed its investigation into an incident at Minneapolis St. Paul International Airport last year in which a taxiing Delta 757 clipped another jet that had been pushed back from its gate.
The ERJ-170 had been pushed back from gate G4 and positioned facing northwest on taxiway B with its parking brake set. The B757 was taxiing along taxiway A and the captain reported that he observed the ERJ-170 and ground personnel, however, it was difficult to judge the distance so he offset his taxi to the left to “be on the safe side”. He reported the presence of the wing walker gave him “a false sense of security.” The wing walker reported he signaled with his lighted wands for the B757 to stop but it was too late and the airplanes collided. The left wing spar of the ERJ-170 was fractured, resulting in substantial damage, and the B757 experienced minor damage to its right wing leading edge slat. In the vicinity of the collision, taxiway B has a distinct bend which brings it closer to taxiway A. Weather at the time of the event was reported as night visual conditions.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows: the B757 Captain’s failure to maintain a safe clearance between his wing and the wingtip of the ERJ-170. Contributing to the accident was the positioning of the ERJ-170 by the Compass ground personnel.
This is what the inside of an airplane’s wing looks like.
That’s the problem with traffic — humans doing stupid human things — that has, apparently, befuddled the smart people trying to build a transportation system that cuts them out of the equation. Read more →
Former Pretenders front woman Chrissie Hynde put people in an uncomfortable position of criticizing a rape victim for her response to rape with her comments to an interviewer about her new book. Read more →
Trace O’Connell, the South Dakota man accused of spilling beer and taunting Native American children at a hockey game in January, has been acquitted of a disorderly conduct charge stemming from the incident. Read more →
My morning walk is again cloaked in darkness. The sunrise song from the birds has mostly disappeared, save the occasional screech of a blue jay, which if you listen long enough begins to sound like a newspaper’s comments section.
Still, autumn is the most underrated of the seasons and it’s not really its fault, I contend. Read more →
An announcement that didn’t get a lot of notice when it was issued on Friday prompts us to recall one of the most turbulent moments in the history of public radio — the day NPR canned Bob Edwards, the longtime host of Morning Edition. Read more →
In Prince George’s County, Maryland last week, a young woman with a 1-year-old girl had finally had enough of domestic violence, which far too often is a choice between being beaten and being homeless. Read more →