Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Welcome to Vietnam!

This is a War Story, told to me by Terry Curry, one of my co-workers, who was an Air Traffic Controller in Vietnam in 1968.

You could always tell the new pilots to 'Nam. For instance, I was stationed in Danang, working one day, and this Braniff 707 comes on, and asks me to vector him in on a straight, 15-mile long path from due north. I told him this was not advisable (since it took him over North Vietnam), and that the recommended path was to come in from the east, and pop down hard and fast. He refused this choice, telling me he had a bunch of VIPs aboard, and he didn't want to jostle them that much.

"Now that you've announced you're a high-value target, I strongly recommend you let me vector you to a new route."

He still refused, and I didn't have a lot of time to argue. We were pretty busy. So I gave him the route he wanted.

No sooner had he settled into his route, when I got a call from a flight of Navy A4s coming back from the North, who had battle damage and needed to land, ASAP. Now, the A4 lands at 190 mph, while the 707 does 140. I thought a moment, and then had these guys come in over the top of the 707, and drop down in front of him to the field.

I'm guessing he got some jet-wash turbulence, because sure enough, a moment later the 707 was back on the horn. "What the hell was that? You didn't give those guys enough separation!"

"Were you touched?"

"I'm going to write you up! That was insufficient separation! You can't do that!"

"I say again: were you touched?"

"What do you mean, was I touched?"

"I mean, did any part of any of their aircraft physically contact any part of your aircraft?"

"No, but ..."

"In a combat zone, that's called separation. Welcome to Vietnam!"

For the next several minutes, all you could hear was the Navy pilots keying their mikes, laughing and hollering.

A little bit later, I got a phone call. "Curry, the commander wants to see you at end of shift. And somebody will be by shortly to collect the tapes."

Somebody picked up the tapes of that afternoon's activities, and when I got off duty, I went over to the squadron. The First Sergeant waved me on into the Commanders office. He was sitting there, with a piece of paper in each hand. One was the Braniff pilot's report on my 'poor performance', the other was a 'Mission Saved' letter from the Navy. He looked up at me as I entered.

"Only you, Curry, could pull off something like this on one mission. Now get outta here."

I turned to leave.

"Oh, and Curry, that 'Welcome to Vietnam' was a bit over the top."

A night with WinWeb Security

My travails of cleaning up a trojan ...

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Linux - Stop holding our kids back

I hope most of you are familiar with "helios", and all he's done for Linux.

This post, dated yesterday, is almost scary: Blog of helios.

To think that a teacher, who is responsible for helping children learn and grow, can be so out-of-touch with reality. It saddens me.

Like one of the follow-on posts says, "I have rarely seen a worse, more damaging ignoramus...."

Monday, December 08, 2008

Bits and pieces....

Just thought I'd do a quick update here. I seem to spend more blogging time at my other blog, lately.

Mandriva is letting Adam Williamson go at the end of the year. That got me to post Mandriva ... :sigh:.

A report on a virus attack on military bases in Afghanistan prompted this.

And, finally, a bit about the Status of PCLinuxOS 2008/2009.

I guess, other than those bits, I've had nothing to say, lately.