Fleet Week in San Francisco Sucks. Birds are Way Cooler. And Quieter.

by doodaddy on October 6, 2007

It’s Fleet Week in San Francisco, when the Blue Angels spend a week strafing The City by the bay with every destructive tool in their arsenal. (Well, except bullets and stuff.)

I hate Fleet Week.

It’s an event that polarizes the area. Some say it’s beautiful, the way the jets simulate bombing runs over downtown, shooting way up into the air while burning thousands of dollars of jet fuel and hundreds of liters of protective ozone every minute.

Others note that the cataclysm of noise is in the middle of our annual hawk migration. Every year, thousands of young birds of prey have no other choice but to test their wings over the Golden Gate between September and November. Woe betide those that choose this week to try to make it across: the jets own the skies at the moment, leaving confused, cold, and hungry raptors grounded and unable to continue south.

So I’ve always hated Fleet Week and the Blue Angels. I really don’t need to know what it sounds like to be under attack. And the virtuosity of pilots pales in comparison with the beauty of birdflight. Let the ships sail into the bay, but the planes should be out in the desert somewhere. You can go watch ’em if you want.

If anything, my hatred for Fleet Week has only intensified since Boobaby came along. Our playground has enough incidental noise from sirens; today, the massive jet engines overhead interrupted our play dozens of times. And naptime? What a joke. The planes fly so low that the windowpanes rattle, and we get a week of sleepy baby.

The only possible recompense is that the shows draw lots of tourists to San Francisco, who forget what we’re famous for and have to buy a lot of sweatshirts. It’s not enough: we need to cancel the jets and line up some convention that’s less offensive, like maybe the International Confederation of Cat-Abusing Porn Star Mimes.

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in Challenges,community,sleep ·

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

cryitout October 6, 2007 at 1:21 pm

For the record, I’d pay to see that convention.

But what really irks me about fleet week is if you say, “Wow, the noise keeps my daughter awake!” you’re called unpatriotic. I’ve had people write me the most fantasticaly moronic and threatening letters in the past few days for daring to say the noise is bothersome. What the hell?


Dawn October 6, 2007 at 2:44 pm

How about all that jet fuel….


Kelley October 6, 2007 at 7:17 pm

Hmmm, again glad I live the the depths of cows and sheep in Australia…..
Every time we hear a plane overhead the whole street runs outside to see what is going on!
We had a blimp fly over head once, for miles people were standing on their roofs trying to get a better look. It was a blimp for Pete’s sake. What did they think, that they could touch it? Stupid country hicks.

Commiserations on trying to get Boobaby to sleep through all that noise.


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