Blue Angels and the Bad Timing Award

When I was a kid, my mother occasionally took us to some military base in Alabama to watch the Blue Angels perform. It was always exciting, because, well, there wasn’t a whole lot to do in Mobile, Alabama. But now I’m all grown up, not to mention there’s a war on, and I feel less enthusiastic about this noisy display of military prowess. I’m using a friend’s house on Alamo Square today–book deadline looms, sitter is at my house with the youngun–and I’d just settled in with a cup of coffee and my laptop on their comfy leather sofa, happy to hear the rain on the windows, watching the dog-walkers get wet in the park–when something seemed to rip a hole in the sky. Having grown up in the Bible Belt, I was bred on the Apocolypse. These planes make a noise akin to something the fire-and-brimstone preachers of my youth promised on the day of reckoning. Which is to say the Blue Angels are unpleasant. Anachronistic. Fun for toddlers, I suppose, but not exactly my thing. Sorry, mama, but it’s true.

10 Comments so far

  1. Jason D- (unregistered) on October 5th, 2006 @ 12:35 pm

    Dude, try sitting in a high rise office building in the Financial District and hearing them roar past. Bowel movement inducing to say the least.


  2. Brian K. (unregistered) on October 5th, 2006 @ 12:59 pm

    The low & frequent fly-bys are creeping me out something fierce. Soooo unsettling.


  3. Brian K. (unregistered) on October 5th, 2006 @ 1:00 pm

    The low & frequent fly-bys are creeping me out something fierce. Soooo unsettling.

    Is there an explanation for them? Fleet week (and the airshow) hasn’t started yet.


  4. michelle (unregistered) on October 5th, 2006 @ 1:13 pm

    I think we’re just supposed to be reminded of and impressed by their bad-assery.


  5. flyingcat (unregistered) on October 5th, 2006 @ 1:27 pm

    you whiny bitches! ;)

    Airplanes are less annoying than rain.
    I love the tickle in my stomach their noise induces.
    I wish I worked in a high rise to see more of them.
    I wish I’d get a ride in one of them.

    I’ve always been internally conflicted between the horrors of war and the marvels of technology, but technology also brings relief and progress in many cases, let’s not forget that and let’s enjoy the airplanes!!


  6. Nancy (unregistered) on October 5th, 2006 @ 2:15 pm

    I started working in SF during the Spring of 2002, and knew nothing of Fleet Week. One day I was walking out to lunch, heard a deep rumble, and saw a flash of fighter jet between highrises. Unsettling? Egads.

    I’m also not crazy about how much these demos must cost the taxpayer. In this age of military budget busting, is glamorizing military technology really how that money should be spent? If the propaganda is really deemed necessary, why not just make an IMAX film for distribution?


  7. cd (unregistered) on October 5th, 2006 @ 3:01 pm

    The Blue Angels get to town early to practice their routines in the days before the actual shows (though, clearly, the practice IS a show).

    When I was at school downtown, I’d race to the top of our tower and run circles around the observation room penthouse to watch them flying around over the hills and the bay. LOVED IT!

    And, for the record, I hate both airplanes and war. This, however, is a marvel of which I never tire.

    Would it make it an easier ordeal if you looked at it for the artistry and amazing engineering feat that it is? I don’t find it glamorizes the war. It certainly doesn’t change my views of the Bush administration. I would doubt it would change any SFers mind in that regards.

    As far as tax dollars – the fed taxes expended on jet fuel likely pale in comparison to the bucks SF rakes in on the hundreds of thousands of people who come, visit, stay, and spend oodle of cash oogling at planes and boats and men/women in uniform.

    We’re certainly not spending TOO MUCH on the military anyway. We’re underfunding them and asking them to do an impossible job. If this makes people look more favorably at allowing congressmen/women to vote in favor of giving everyone body armor – good.


  8. Poormojo (unregistered) on October 5th, 2006 @ 4:03 pm

    I’ve always hated the Blue Angels. I was forced to go watch them as a wee lad and never saw what the point was. They’re planes. They fly. So do birds, so do kites. What’s the big deal.

    But now as an adult working on the 25th of an office building downtown I really hate them. Could they go practice someplace else maybe? Someplace not full of people trying to get work down.

    Or–here’s an idea–why don’t they save all that jet fuel they’re burning for our troops over in Iraq? Y’know, war rationing?


  9. Nancy (unregistered) on October 5th, 2006 @ 5:00 pm
  10. eli b. (unregistered) on October 5th, 2006 @ 5:01 pm

    Airplanes are fun to look at but most of us don’t get to SEE them, we’re at work. And when I can’t see them coming, it’s just a huge scary noise from nowhere. People with nerves of steel like Flyingcat may think I’m just a whiny bitch, but I’ve been jumping out of my skin all day & shaking – nothing to do with my opinion of airplanes, but it’s like having gunshots go off in the next room.



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