Bruce poses a very good question that a lot of folks may be wondering about in the Nigerian Airliner attack. Namely - how could they miss? The discarded launchers shown on video coverage look to be SA-7s. Old Soviet manportable infrared seeker point defense weapons, manufactured by the thousands or hundreds of thousands in the late 70s and early eighties. Typical of Soviet design, rugged little beasties, probably capable of being stepped on, driven over by a tank, dragged through the mud, and still operate in the hands of a terrified conscript about to piss his pants due to an approaching western block Cobra helicopter gunship. The key here is late 70's early 80's. Shelf life. Although rugged, these things were built relatively simply, with 'crude' tech engineering. And, they went out of production about the time VW stopped making the beetle outside of Mexico and Brazil. Also, the ones that were used in Nigeria were probably part of a shipment to one of the Soviet client states - small arms were passed around somewhat like corporate types pass out promotional pens at a trade show - and the Soviets were well known for dumping the 'factory seconds' to their good friends, and keeping the 'QC checked and approved by worker 438 from collective State Defense Factory 37' models for their own use. Then consider that the new owners probably weren't to fastidious about the storage and handling of their new gizmos - too hot, too cold, too much humidity, dust, dirt, etc, etc. Also possibly being abused during smuggling operations, as well. I'm not so much surprised, all things considered, that they missed, but that the damned things even fired at all. Further, a high bypass ratio turbofan, of the type used by Boeing on the 757, produces a somewhat smaller, or less concentrated IR signature than the tight, compact engines on the helicopters these things were designed to take out. As for actually taking the airliner down - As Matt pointed out in the comments to Bruce's original post, airliners and military jets (and particularly helicopters) are engineered somewhat differently. And certainly are a much 'tougher' target than the helicopters the SA-7 was originally built to counter. Taken a step further, and assuming that at least one of the projectiles (which, by published descriptions, appeared to have been on a solely ballistic, unguided trajectory) had homed on an engine, the damage would have been out on the engine pylon, somewhat removed from the wing structure, and quite a distance from the fuselage area. Had the shrapnel caused a catastrophic failure of the engine core, the plane would still have enough thrust to stay aloft, and come back for an emergency landing. Don't mistake my critique of the methodology as a dismissal of the barbarity of the intent and act. The perpetrators should have their genetalia worked over with a broken bottle soaked in alcohol and sprinkled with kosher salt before having their mouths stuffed with bacon, and sewed up inside a pigskin bag prior to being tossed into a pit of slightly famished wild boars as preparation for their attempt to enter their 72 virgin afterlife. On the bright side, they're moronic idiots. Too bad they're homicidal, raving lunatic moronic idiots. The sooner we put them out of their misery, the better.
Yes, that is his current location. Quick - leave him lots of voice mail messages while he's out looking for dinner... UPDATE: Better yet, any local NY bloggers got the number for the local Domino's?
The Rosenthals are friends with Tanglefoot's lead singer, who lives in Ithaca, despite being Canadian. It's a great band, and anyone who can get an American family singing a rousing song about Yankee domination can't be all bad, eh?
Come all you brave young soldier lads With your strong and manly bearing I'll tell you a tale of a woman bold and her deed of honest daring Laura Secord was American-born in the state of Massachusets But she made her home in Canada and proved so faithful to us Chorus There's American guns and 500 men So the warning must be given And Laura Ingersoll Secord was the stalwart heart Who braved the heat and the flies and the swamp To warn Colonel Fitzgibbon There's soldiers pounding at the door And they come from across the border American officers march inside It's food and drink they've ordered In comfort they have dined and drunk Their own success they've toasted But they pay no heed to the woman who hears their plan so idly boasted Chorus Oh, James I've overheard it all A surprise attack they're making Fitzgibbon they intend to smash His men for prisoners taking And James a warning never you'll take with your wounded knee and shoulder I myself must carry it past the sentries and the soldiers Chorus It's an all-day tramp to the British camp By way of Shipman's Corners There're snakes and flies and sweat in her eyes There is no respite for her She's lost her shoes in the muck of the bog Her feet are torn and blistered But there's many a soldier lad to be spared if the message be delivered Chorus So all you Yankee soldier lads who dare to cross our border Thinking to save us from ourselves Usurping British order There's women and men Canadians all Of every rank and station To stand on guard and keep us free From Yankee domination
Yes, you have a Canadian Attitude. Is that okay?
You're a conciliatory, wishy-washy, igloo-living, army-lacking, gun-hating,
crossborder-shopping, politeness-overdoing, American-by-Association
Take the What the Hell Kinda Attitude is That? Quiz at aka cooties
Dave Barry poses an interesting question that maybe one of Australian readers will shed some light upon - Just exactly how does one measure a kangaroo's farts?
Bruce will know for sure he's out of 'The South' if he goes into a local restaraunt, orders an iced tea, and isn't asked "Sweet or Unsweet?" Lack of that question indicates one of two things - 1) You aren't in the South, or, 2) You may geographically be in 'The South', but are dining at a 'Generica' chain restaraunt founded or owned by Yankees or somebody from California.
Is the best way I can describe the reaction to Tom's post about chicken. And that 'recipe'. Words fail me. Pathetic. Must be some sort of left coast fantasy recipe. I'm surprised it desn't direct you to garnish with avocados and bean sprouts before serving. Although I thought the squash/spinach recipe would be the last, the abomination that Tom posted below just cannot go unanswered. Ok, now if I'd known he was interested in Southern Cooking! Guess I was lulled into a false sense of security by Meryl talking about out of the way, hole in the wall bar-b-que joints, fried okra, and all. We could have talked about something much more intricate and interesting Friday than how to take a picture of the USS Cole and the TR without being dragged off to a Navy brig. Ahem. WARNING to New Zealanders and Australians:
Do NOT make the chicken recipe Tom Paine published and serve it to an American Southerner and call it "Fried Chicken". A Fight may ensue. Fried Chicken (and note, please this in no way involves an OVEN, PARSLEY, or OREGANO). Raw Materials Some chicken, cut up into frying size pieces. Use own judgement. Some flour. About a cup and a half or so if you want an exact 'amount' but it usually isn't ever the same. Some salt. Just enough so it isn't too much. Somewhere between a teaspoon and a tablespoon. Enough to make the 'about right size' little pile in my hand. Some pepper. Same instructions as with salt. Some milk, in a bowl. Some Accent flavor enhancer (optional). Generous dash. Basically, MSG here. 1 Can of Crisco. (A 'Merickan' brand of vegetable shortening) About 8 to 12 ounces of liquid cooking oil. Wesson, Crisco, corn, sunflower, whatever floats your boat. I sometimes also add one 'glug' of peanut oil, just to flavor it a bit. The big pot. Mine is about 12" in diameter, and about 6" Deep. Two handles, one on either side. Teflon coated, but this isn't important. I do have a rather large iron skillet that could be used, but this way is easier. A gallon size ziploc bag. Directions Put the entire can of Crisco into the big pot. Add enough additional vegetable oil so the pot is a little over half full. Put it onto a large burner on the stove. Medium to medium high heat. Hot enough so drops of water flicked into it will dance, but not so hot the oil is smoking. Yes, you can burn the oil, and with as much warning as it gives before it gets to the really disgusting and burnt stage, you have only yourself to blame if this happens. Do not put it on HIGH to save time. This will burn it. Just use the medium to medium high heat setting. It will be ready by the time you get the other stuff you have to do ready. Combine flour, salt, pepper, and Accent into ziploc bag. Close ziploc. Have fun tossing it around to mix ingredients. Set aside. Wash off the cut up chicken, even if you think its clean enough. Hey, its chicken, water won't hurt it. Check for any pinfeathers that the automatic pluckers may have missed. Sort of shake the water off, but don't get all involved with 'patting it dry' or anything. Again, this is just chicken. Dunk the chicken in the milk, and then toss the pieces into the ziploc bag. After all the pieces are in, close the ziploc, and repeat the shaking exercise from before, only about twice as long this time around. If you want to make a funny, imitate a really bad twangy southern accent and say "Its shake and bake, and I helped". Ok, thats enough. Stop playing with the plastic bag now. Check the oil. Wet the ends of your fingers at the sink, then flick the excess water towards the big pot. Do not do this with your face directly pointed at the big pot. Its hot enough when some of the water just dances immediately, but enough stays liquid to sink and make really loud muffled popping noises from the bottom of the oil. If it takes more than a couple of seconds for it to make the muffled popping noise, it isn't hot enough. Give it about 5 minutes and test it again. The chicken isn't going anywhere...it should already be dead, and you should have closed the top of the ziploc bag. One sign you may have done this incorrectly is flour and chicken pieces all over your kitchen from the mixing step. Once the oil is ready, open ziploc, and put in pieces one at a time. If you're really in a hurry, dumping the whole thing in at once will not help. It will probably earn you a trip to the local ER for getting burned by hot splattering oil, though. Using some sort of stirring implement, stir it around ONCE after its all in. Now walk away. Or not. Yes, you can stand there and watch it, but it isn't really going to do anything spectacular for the next 5 minutes or so. This is just chicken. If you have a timer, set it for 6, 7 or 8 minutes, your choice. When the timer goes off, go back and stir things around ONCE. Reset the timer for about 5 more minutes. When is this stuff done? Good question. Look for some of the smaller pieces to start floating. This is a good indication that the interiors are heated enough to create steam. After the smaller pieces (such as wings) begin to bob around, give it a few more minutes to brown a bit. If it browns too fast, then you overheated the oil. Was it smoking? Didn't I mention not to do that? Ok. Once most of the pieces start floating, and the outside is a 'nice golden brown color' you're just about there. Give it another minute and a half at that point. Then fish it outr with a slotted spoon. Its a good idea to have a plate ready to put it on. If you want, you can be all neat about it and put a folded up paper towel on the plate, but there really shouldn't be too much oil draining off of it. If there is a lot of oil, your oil may not have been hot enough. Did the water dance when you tested it? Did it make the loud muffled popping noises pretty quickly, or did it take a while? Let it cool for a few minutes, unless you really enjoy burning the crap out of the roof of your mouth and your tongue. Once cooled off a bit, enjoy! Now, for the biscuits. Simple. Buy box of Bisquick. Follow directions. Caution, the directions for plain biscuits is usually in a small obscure out of the way place on the side of the box. Do not follow the most prominent recipe on the box, or you may end up with Belgian waffles or some such. One sure way to stay out of trouble is to avoid anything on the box with 'powdered sugar' as part of the ingredients list. If anyone is really interested, I'll call my great aunt and get her to remind me of her recipe for scratch drop biscuits. Do not substitute anything from a round cardboard tube that you pop open with a spoon. Bisquick is an acceptable shortcut, but anything marketed by that fat giggling 'dough' thing spokeswidget is a foul. Actually I would recommend cornbread to acompany. Washed down by copious amounts of sweet iced tea, with lemon.