Prepare For Takeoff

The Blue Angels of the United States Navy fly over San Francisco, CA as part of 2016's Fleet Week. (October 2016)

Goose: “No. No, Mav, this is not a good idea.”

Maverick: “Sorry, Goose, but it’s time to buzz the tower.”

(“Top Gun”)

I am a bit remiss in posting these photos from San Francisco’s Fleet Week in October. (Veterans Day guilt finally kicked me into gear.)

Taken over four glorious days, all three air shows (plus one practice) went off without a single fog-out. (We cut things pretty close with Sunday’s final performance, though.)

While the Blue Angels could never be described as “boring”, the crowd on our rooftop was happy to see some new choreography this year.

Several maneuvers induced unfortunate 9/11 flashbacks for some — the United Airlines jet flying low over the Bay was terrifying — but on the upside, panic is a great way to boost your cardio without even moving your feet!  Just look up, and enjoy the fun.

With the Blue Angels, you are in excellent hands…

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Fleet Week 2015, San Francisco Style

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Every October, the San Francisco Bay Area celebrates Fleet Week — a highlight of which is (for most of us) the participation of the U.S Navy’s elite Blue Angels.

The above cartoon perfectly captures the conflict Bay Area citizens face each year, as we weigh the environmental and monetary costs of this enormous spectacle… with how unbelievably COOL it is when a lethal fighter jet buzzes your building.

“Hey, I can see the pilot’s helmet from down here!”

I think you can guess I’m pretty firmly in the right brain camp on this one.

I’ve Got Friends In High Places

My Dad in his navy days
Hey Dad, you’re in the Navy now…

I did my fair share of complaining this weekend, what with an overwhelming tourist invasion and the Giants’ losses to the Cincinnati Reds.  But truth be told, it was a great weekend in San Francisco… largely because it was Fleet Week.

I love Fleet Week.  LOVE IT.  I adore the sailors, who walk around this beautiful city every October with wide-eyed awe and excitement.  But, when did these guys get so… young?

My beloved Dad joined the Navy after high school, with his eyes on the GI Bill prize like so many young men in his day.  That’s another reason I’m a softy for Fleet Week guys in uniform.

Most importantly, Fleet Week means the Blue Angels.  And what’s NOT to love about the Blue Angels?  I challenge anyone on earth to watch these artists perform, without gasping and smiling, and mumbling “that’s unbelievable” at least twice.

I suspect the Blue Angels kind of like me too.  After all, they buzz my building in Russian Hill every year.  That has to count for something, right?

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