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High Fliers

Timing. It’s everything.

Take the case of the recent Concorde disaster. Many years ago my wife and I flew on it. Lots of fun.

Had we taken the Concorde flight a few days ago, we would be dead. But we missed the ill-fated ride by at least a decade.

A day or two before the Concorde crash, my wife and I were in Maui. As readers of this column will recall, Kate is a flight attendant and she often takes me to some of her exotic destinations. Husbands can fly (if there is space) for a small service charge.

It was not the first time we had gone to Maui. Several years ago, Kate took me there and I wrote what I thought was a hilarious story about the adventure. She and her flying partners (read:  other stews) didn’t think the story was all that amusing, and for a few years Kate did not take me back to Maui.

Anyway, last week, after I had been super nice for many days (I had peeked at Kate’s schedule and knew Hawaii was one of her destinations), she invited me to come with her.

When we got to beautiful Maui, I wanted to do something fun for her. I knew she had enjoyed a helicopter tour of Honolulu a few years ago, so, arriving in Maui, I called a local helicopter sightseeing service from our hotel room.

Since I’m a mooch, I attempted to talk the executives of Blue Hawaiian Helicopters into letting us take a trip. I promised them massive publicity and suggested a link to their Web (www.bluehawaiian.com). I had almost talked the executive into the complimentary flight when he had to take another call. He promised to call me back.
He didn’t.

The next day I discovered that at the time I had called, one of the Blue Hawaiian choppers had crashed into a mountain. The pilot and all six passengers were killed instantly.

Had we gone to Maui a day earlier, I think my wife and I would have been aboard that ill-fated sightseeing chopper. We would have been dead.

Or would we?

As you can see by the story I wrote about the Concorde, I have a tendency to joke around. What if I had joked around with the pilot of the chopper. What if I had delayed the flight by five seconds? Would it have crashed?

Maybe. Maybe not.

What is the lesson to be learned here? Write to me and tell me what you think.

P.S.:  Do you believe there is life after death? I wrote a novel about it. You can read the first chapter; then, if you want, I’ll send you the entire book — and you can read it on your computer for free. It’s an adult thriller with a touch of wild sex in it. Here’s the first chapter.

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