There’s a few professions in life in which you prefer to never think about the actual human being whose doing the work.
The person who’s operating on you, for instance. If I was having a procedure done tomorrow, I wouldn’t want to meet my surgeon out of the fear that he’d look like Zach Galifianakis’s character in The Hangover. Instead, I choose to imagine a clean-cut, supremely competent, by-the-book doctor whose never had an alcoholic beverage in his or her life.
Or my chef at dinner. I don’t even picture a human being cooking my food when I’m out to eat. I envision a cartoon version of an Italian man with a handlebar mustache. The last thing I want to think about is an actual person sweating and breathing while hovering over my chicken rollatini.
Another job in which we fail to comprehend the human element? Pilot.
When during the course of a flight do you even see the person steering your plane? At the very end? And at that point — you’ve already landed safely, so who cares who flew it? It could have been Spongebob Squarepants in the cockpit and it wouldn’t make any difference.
Again, it’s something you don’t want to think about. You’re putting your life in their hands, so you’re envisioning a pilot who has the aviation abilities of Captain Sully and Maverick from Top Gun combined.
Well, that’s all going to change now after the bombshell revelation that Andreas Lubitz, the 27-year-old German who flew Germanwings Flight 9525 into a mountain, was suicidal, mentally ill and possibly vision impaired. And yet, he was still deemed fit to fly because he had not disclosed all of his private medical information with airline officials.
Not only will this severely affect how airlines go about evaluating their pilots, but I think it’s going to open a whole new feeling of consciousness among travelers. We want to know more about the person who is flying us. I wouldn’t be surprised if people started calling for a public database of pilots, where we could actually pick and choose flights based on its aviator. Which, in theory, could also provide a convenient way for pilots to hook up with each other. Everybody wins.
Will this tragedy stop people from flying? Highly doubtful. But it certainly won’t help alleviate the fears of the many people who already have a fear of flying. And even though this is an isolated incident, you can argue that it’s up to airlines to win back our confidence.
The hottest would-be-killer America has ever known has been living in Seattle the past four years, and she could stay there as long as she wants, because her eight-year courtroom drama was finally put to an end this weekend when she was acquitted by Italy’s highest court for her alleged role in the 2007 murder of Meredith Kercher.
Those who think America’s legal system is inferior to those of other countries need look no further than Knox’s case history. In 2009, she was found guilty and sentenced to 26 years in prison. In 2011, she was acquitted. In 2013, the acquittal was overturned and she was sentenced to 28 years. On March 27, she was exonerated for good.
That sequence of events is even more far fetched than the plot of Gone Girl.
It’s only a matter of time before HBO, capitalizing on the success of The Jinx, contacts Knox for a documentary-style miniseries. Or for a late night softcore porno. I’d watch either.
And speaking of watching things — yeah, I’m not even trying with these segways anymore — the Daily Show found a replacement for Jon Stewart, and his name is Trevor Noah, a biracial South African.
You may not believe me, but somewhere, deep in the fiber of my being, I was hoping that Comedy Central would choose him. He made his debut on the show in December in a short bit satirizing the average American perception of Africa, and he won me over.
Most Daily Show correspondents always struck me as trying too hard to be funny. But Noah, in that one bit, seemed natural. And I feel like he’ll excel in combining humor and sincerity, which is the dynamic skillset that made Stewart such an authoritative and influential host, while also making us laugh our asses off.
Just wait and see. I think Noah can continue Stewart’s legacy.
And speaking of continuing legacies…
I’m just kidding. I’m done.