You know those dirty marks left on a jetliner around the outside of the forward left exit door? I have a new term for them: “gate hickeys.”

Bad idea of the century: taking a corporate jet, extending it 10 feet, cramming it with seats, and selling it as a “regional jet.” RJs are one of the most significant reasons I would rather drive for 6 hours than fly for 1.

What was the best single-aisle jetliner in the world, and why was it the Boeing 757? Discuss.

Great Burgers

As I chewed my way through an Angus Burger at Rockit in Chicago back in 2019, a truism occurred to me:

The way to separate great meat from the merely good is to serve it well-done. A patty made from “good” meat will offer decent texture and the flavor of the grill. A “great” patty will give you both along with great flavor from the meat itself, even when on the edge of being overcooked.

So yes, thanks, I will have mine well done, please.

Thanks in no small part to Mark Wahlberg, I have read my first Spenser story, and now have a new guilty vice.

Books of 2021: The Myth of Chinese Capitalism

It wasn’t that Tiff told me anything I didn’t already know. It is, rather, the way he lays all the facts out in a cogent argument that made me stop and think. Creating new terms and adding modifiers to frame China’s current economic system and business climate as “capitalism” was once a hopeful expression that China was somehow transitioning to something recognizably capitalist. Today it is clear that any concessions to capital were temporary and expedient, and that the Party has never strayed from its desire to build a centrally-controlled economy that can satisfy the material needs of the people while building national power and prestige.

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