Why Is Liberace Jumping Out of a Perfectly Good Plane?

Why Is Liberace Jumping Out of a Perfectly Good Plane?

Hey, that’s a World War II vintage training plane, isn’t it? Neato. It’s coughing smoke like a 1989 Chevy Citation, but other than that, it looks like it’s in fine shape. The guy flying it looks like a jaunty fellow. Low-key, just like all the fellows that learned to fly in that thing back in the day. I bet Jimmy Stewart learned to fly in one of those planes, or something similar. He was a B-17 pilot, for reals. He didn’t go Hollywood when he enlisted. He went to war.

It’s a mystery why the pilot in the video brought Liberace along for a ride in that nifty plane. The passenger was dressed like he was going windsurfing with John Kerry or something. What is it with people nowadays? Do you have to dress like a toddler for everything? I figure he kept giving infantile thumbs up motions to the pilot simply because the canopy was closed and he couldn’t ask for high fives continuously.

The people who learned to fly in that plane shook hands like men on the tarmac after they got back from bombing Ploesti. Dressing like a Tour de France runner-up and jumping out of a perfectly good airplane wouldn’t cut any ice with them. They were men. They wouldn’t have dressed to got to Gymboree after they graduated from eighth grade.

Olive drab. Look into it.

3 thoughts on “Why Is Liberace Jumping Out of a Perfectly Good Plane?

  1. I was tired of the “Thumbs-up” thing at :18 seconds.

    It was a good lofted-departure from the aircraft, I was wondering how he was going to avoid hitting the rear stabilizer, killing us all.

    Overall, I’m giving the video a single “O.K.” sign with my right hand… and inserting a “We’re number one” sign into it with my left hand.

  2. In late 1944 my father, then-Aviation Ordnanceman First Class H. L. Price, jumped from that same seat in that same aircraft – an SNJ in yellow paint and Navy livery – somewhere over King Ranch, Texas, following an engine failure. He described the approved exit as opening the canopy, standing up, bending at the waist over the port side of the cockpit, grabbing the step, and pulling one’s self down and out of the aircraft; this to avoid the horizontal stabilizer while falling *under* it. (He survived his Caterpillar Club initiation and went on to fly bombardment and rescue patrols as a naval aircrewman aboard the PBM-5 Mariner – the ugliest flying boat ever built – from Saipan Island through the end of the war.)

    Sport parachutists have always dressed colorfully, so this guy isn’t that unusual. In fact, he was probably in perfect style for an exit as absurd as that one.

  3. Hi J. Sterling- Thanks for reading and commenting. My father flew bomber planes in the South Pacific during the war, and was lucky men like your father were ready to fish him out of the drink if necessary.

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