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Wings Over Houston Airshow

A scene from Top Gun, as inspired by Wings Over Houston.

A scene from Top Gun, as inspired by Wings Over Houston.

The Wings Over Houston Airshow is truly a thorough experience. The air is thick with Jet A, fiery explosions serve as a backdrop for swooping fighter planes, and hoardes of fans circle their favorite aircraft in the blistering sun.

But no airshow would be complete without the entire flying experience. That is why the organizers of Wings Over Houston decided not to hire anyone to direct traffic into the event. That way, it’s exactly like trying to get on a real plane: people sniffing up your ass in order to respectfully jump in front of you in the boarding “line”, all while some Taco Bell graduate airline employees watch the general disarray.

Let me present a scenario. Traffic is jammed on your street. You are trying to go straight past a light. It turns red, so you stop. To your right, another street is jammed, with people trying to turn right. I know there’s a lot of fucking directions here, just draw it on a piece of paper. What happens? The light turns red for you, so you stop. It is green for them, so they start turning right, until the street ahead of you is full and they have to stop turning right. Their light turns red, and yours turns green, but there’s nowhere to go. This continues indefinitely until you either run the red light, or block the intersection.

Then there’s driving on the shoulder. Which is what at least three or four cars full of soldiers did, as well as at least one police car. I don’t know what the soldiers were doing, or where they were going. If they were indeed active soldiers and not just overdressed rednecks, then they do enough as it is, so God bless ’em.

About halfway through the airshow (two hours or so after we got in line), we were approaching the entrance—or so we figured—since the street was split into two lanes. A small sign said “airshow left lane”. It may as well have been in fucking braille, because it was tiny. Amazingly, most people respected it—for the first few hours. Then it became a total cockfest of people cutting in at the very end of the line.

And how was at the end of the line, watching the total cockfest? Why, four illustrious members of the sheriff’s department. Luckily by clustering together, they could have jovial conversations with each other as they waved in the people who were cutting in line. Their radius of efficacy was about 6 feet; after being directed people did whatever the fuck they wanted to do anyway. Amazingly, there were two clogged intersections, and two entrances to the air show. Hot damn! 2+2 = 4, which coincidentally is the number of fucking fluorescent-vested hand wavers!

God bless the American Legion for providing donation-based parking and cheap cheeseburgers. We should have just parked the car and stayed with them instead of walking the mile and a half to see the last quarter of the air show.

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