Well there went another one. I do hope yours was all you hoped it would be and that
the season of good cheer didn't become something you'd rather forget. Apparently
nearly two million people spent Christmas abroad this year. I wonder what they knew
that we didn't, maybe that this year the airport baggage handlers had other things
on their minds and had forgotten to strike. The best silly story I heard went as
Santa Claus, like all aviators, gets regular visits from the Federal Aviation Administration,
and the FAA examiner arrived last week for the pre-Christmas flight check.
In preparation, Santa had the elves wash the sled and bathe all the reindeer. Santa
got his logbook out and made sure all his paperwork was in order. He knew they would
examine all his equipment and truly put Santa's flying skills to the test.
The examiner walked slowly around the sled. He checked the reindeer harnesses, the
landing gear, and even Rudolph's nose. He painstakingly reviewed Santa's weight and
balance calculations for sled's enormous payload. Finally, they were ready for the
Santa got in and fastened his seat belt and shoulder harness and checked the compass.
Then the examiner hopped in carrying, to Santa's surprise, a shotgun. "What's that
for!?" asked Santa incredulously. The examiner winked and said, "I'm not supposed
to tell you this ahead of time," as he leaned over to whisper in Santa's ear, "but
you're going to lose an engine on takeoff."