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« Special Session Update | Main | A House Divided »

Chopper Chicken

This was one of those mornings I wish I had had my camera with me.

I walked into my office after the morning meeting, looked out the window, and saw the military chasing Jack Bauer as he was whisking that Mexican drug dealer back to El Pais. Only they were already over downtown. And neither one was a military copter. And they were headed more or less straight south for the Financial Center building, which is what I see out of my north-facing window.

Did I mention that they were both well below roof level?

When they emerged from around the other side, the trailing chopper had pulled even, and then, as I watched, pulled around and in front of chopper #1, like the airspace was just I-25 extended upwards. They sat there for a few seconds, with the blades no more than a dozen feet apart, and then headed off to the south.

And I went for a cup of coffee.

When I got back, they were just breaking up from round #2. Chopper #2 retreated back to the northwest, and Chooper #1 once again flew by the Financial center a good six storeys below roof level.

I don't know if there was something wrong with the first chopper that the second guy just had to tell him about, but I suspect that the emergency channel would have been they way to go there. Definitely not pinning him against a major office tower with rush hour traffic down below.

Fortunately, the FAA has a simple 800 number to call to report just such things. Three long voicemail instructions, several selections, and a recording letting me know that all the operators were watching the World Cup, I left a voicemail detailing what had happened. We'll see if they call back.

I didn't get any tail numbers, and there were no media affiliations painted on the side, either, but this had all the earmarks of a pissing contest between traffic reporters or TV film crews. They didn't look as though they were in a hurry, and they weren't hospital choppers, either. In any case, there are a couple of pilot's licenses that need revoking, and if they were media helicopters, I'd have the FCC put their broadcast licenses under review, too, just to make a point.

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