Gatineau/Ottawa
11 July 2003

 

A new member joining us this week is Brian Gibson from Stafford, UK

Welcome to the OBA!

 

From: Martin Liggett, Swindon, UK tracey@liggett14.freeserve.co.uk
Date: 04 Jul 2003 06:42
Subject: Interesting

Tony,

This may be of interest. Air Foyle employs a few ex UKMAMS and RAF loadmasters as flight managers, maybe Hughie Curran or Stevie Biggs is incarcerated in a dungeon in Canada!

Cheers

Martin

 

Seized plane remains grounded in Labrador

HAPPY VALLEY-GOOSE BAY — A Ukrainian-based airline is trying to figure out how to get its plane out of Goose Bay. 

On Saturday morning, officials at the airport seized the Antonov-124, one of the world's largest aircraft. It had landed Thursday to deliver equipment for the Italian air force contingent training in Labrador. A Quebec company claims the Ukrainian government owes it more than $60 million. 

Graham Pearce, senior vice-president of Antonov Airlines, says he doesn't exactly know why the giant cargo plane was seized, since the dispute doesn't directly involve the company; however, the company is owned by the Ukrainian government. 

Nineteen Ukrainian crew members are waiting in Labrador to see what will happen. 

Pearce says he hopes to get the plane released soon, but there are other options. "We can either leave the crew there – they certainly have sufficient funds – or we will certainly need the pilots to be doing other flights," Pearce says. "We may have to fly them out on a commercial aircraft, possibly into the U.S., so we can get them back into our route network as soon as possible and we can have a productive crew." 

The plane was due to leave for Houston, Texas on Sunday on contract with the American government. 

 

From: David Barton, Kings Lynn, UK david.barton2@tesco.net
Date: 04 Jul 2003 12:48
Subject: Suez


Hi Tony,

Much talk about the Suez medal. I came through the Suez Canal (north Bound) in February 1953 - do I qualify for a medal?

Keep up the good work.

Dave Barton.

 

From: David Barton, Kings Lynn, UK david.barton2@tesco.net
To: John Wickham, United Arab Emirates johnlw@emirates.net.ae
Date: 04 Jul 2003 12:54
Subject: Don Wickham

Rest assured John, your Dad is often in our thoughts, well at least with us 'oldies'. 

There has been much written and talked about our escapades while on UK MAMS. Don taught me a lot when he was on 'F Troop'. 

Hope all is well with you.

Dave Barton

 

[Ed: A posting to NATO in Naples sounds charming -  here's what one naval officer said about his tour.]

Pleasant chaos reigns.

Naples is a third world city, languidly seeking fourth world status. The first thing that struck us about the city, arriving that August, was the roads. It wasn't until mid-September, when the roadsides were cleared of rubbish, that we discovered they were two metres wider.

One particular road seemed odd: one side was in good repair, the other much less so. The reason why? The Pope had visited the city, and wherever he drove, the road had been mended - but only the side he drove on.

Potholes were spectacular: they'd been there so long, the faded white lines in the middle of the road carried on through the holes. In wet weather they were especially difficult to see, as they were invisible under the muddy surface water. The significance of a red traffic light we quickly discovered only meant that the light bulb was working.

A car driving on the left of three lanes, indicating left, was setting an initiative test: he intended to turn right, across the three lanes, without of course checking his mirror first. Motorbikes were an example of Neapolitan quirkiness and youthful foolhardiness: Italian law decreed that riders of bikes above a certain CC had to carry (but not wear) crash helmets.

So down the autostrada, at 130 kph, there they'd be, throwing caution to the wind with their helmets on their arms. But curiouser still was the bike we once saw towing a galloping horse. Steering wheel airbags seemed to be superfluous - you'd simply put your three year old son on your lap.

However, life in the city was not entirely chaotic: If you had a genuine problem, say a child needing hospital care, you'd only need hang white handkerchiefs from your car windows, and everyone would give way for you, even in the rush hour. But equally, if you arrived at an accident, you were required to take casualties to the nearest Pronto Seccorso or First Aid point, regardless of the gore involved.

Robbery was rife, and law-abiding NATO personnel were easy targets. During my three years in NATO, over 10,000 thefts were reported to the Carabinieri. Not one arrest resulted. Our only success was when a feisty British cavalry officer's wife caught a thief red-handed, and chased him down the street - where two passing US Marines grabbed him. He was soon out on bail, and we had to give the wife extra protection.

One of my warrant officers once discovered that an expensive palm tree had been stolen from his rented property; the owner of the property discovered a local cigarette dealer had been seen carrying a similar tree: his cigarette storehouse burnt down that night. Mail was incredibly slow. My secretary received a letter one day in May, asking for a visit in July. She rang up to agree, only to find the letter had been posted the previous year.

We were the only country in Europe, and one of only three in the world, where the Embassy and Consulate received its mail via the British Forces Post Office on the base. But postal delays were nothing compared to the task of banking. To make a simple withdrawal at my own bank required three queues. At first I paid my monthly rent in cash, into my landlady's account, conveniently at my bank. It took three weeks for the money to reach her account at a cost of £4.

In Rome, an official cheque presented by arrangement at the bank below the NATO Defence College was duly stamped "Paid" and a week later, within the bank, it was allowed to be cashed by an unknown person a second time. It took six months to get our money back.

Food was very seasonal. Strawberries lasted for around four weeks, and then disappeared until the following year. But mozzarella arrived fresh twice daily at our local store. After much discussion about non-Italian wine, our wine merchant proudly offered me some Beaujolais Nouveau - a year after its vintage.

Buildings were designed for the heat of summer, but winters could be cold. Our house had loose windows, to cope with earthquakes, which my wife combated by putting up thick curtains; we burnt a wood fire for five months of the year, supplemented by gas stoves. Electricity was incredibly erratic: we would watch the lights going off progressively 20 miles up the coast, with only car headlights breaking the pitch darkness.

One Christmas in our favourite Ravello restaurant, we sat huddled beside the single portable heater with our scarves and gloves on - an interesting way to eat pasta. The waiter called to us and flung the doors wide open to the wind - it was snowing, and he wanted us to see it. Bargaining was fun, so long as one had plenty of time and did not get cross. I always used to explain in my defence that I had four grandparents, seven children and a starving sports car, and couldn't afford inflated prices - which usually did the trick.

Pets were regularly abandoned - often on a main road. Unable to find their way out of these dangerous stretches, dogs would wander hopelessly looking for their owners until they were run over. Their corpses would lie rotting for weeks.

During our stay, my wife taught full-time, so we employed a part-time maid. She was charming, but gave her notice unexpectedly one day. She had got engaged, and her fiancé refused to let her work. This was sad as she couldn't afford to get married for several years: her wedding dress alone would cost several thousand pounds.

As for my wife and me, all was not doom and gloom: spring and autumn were beautiful, and the surrounding countryside away from Naples was superb. We won't be going back though.

Lt. Cdr. Ken Napier

 

From: David Barton, Kings Lynn, UK david.barton2@tesco.net
Date: 04 Jul 2003 15:16
Subject: Maralinga

Hi Tony,

In response to Howard Firth, of Mossel Bay Bay, S.A. letter, reference Maralinga. 

I well remember driving from Adelaide to Alice Springs in 1981 before the road was built, a very rough journey that was, It took six days. I stopped at Woomera which was just a very dusty outback place and then called in at Coober Pedy and well remember the railway station. The 'Gan', the well known train operating between Adelaide and Alice Springs, unbeknown to me had only just stopped operating, but I still gave the station the once over. I quote from my journal :-

"It had been raining on and off during the day since leaving Kingoonya, just light enough to keep the dust down and to discolour the car. As I neared the worlds largest opal mining area - Coober Pedy, the rain stopped. This was certainly a mining town with a difference. Many shacks, mounds of rubble, mining equipment strewn all over the place. Opals or gold, I expect mines look the same all over. With the confusion of house, buildings, mine shafts etc. it was difficult to judge who had been lucky and 'struck' a rich seam and those who were still digging and hoping for a strike. In the 'town', every second shop had on display both cut and uncut opals."

And so my journal continued. I left the next day for Marla Bore and eventually arrived at Alice Springs with a very dirty car covered with red dust both inside and out. There was no way that I would have undertaken the return journey and upon closer look at my hire car agreement, noticed that one was not permitted to drive on unmetaled roads!! Ended up hanging about the local 'roadhouse' and persuaded a lorry driver to take the car back to Adelaide ( for a price) and I caught the plane back.

 

From: Charles Collier, Marlborough, UK pertine4@btopenworld.com
Date: 04 Jul 2002 16:37
Subject: Aden 1966 - On Meeting the SAS

Hello Tony, 

I'm about to go on my annual 100 miles cycle ride with the CTC veterans from south Chester into Wales and back. But before I depart I thought I would tell a tale about my time in Aden.

You will remember from before that I was secretary of the Aden Forces Pistol Club for you saw some of the pictures of our expedition to Djibouti. Anyway, I was asked by a pistol club executive if I would take a parcel to RAF Khormaksar addressed to our opposite numbers in the French forces pistol club. It transpired that A French Sky Raider aircraft was flag stopping at Aden before returning to Djibouti. My instructions were to meet the French pilot and give him the parcel addressed to Capt Orio at Djibouti.

On arrival at Khormaksar, I was instructed to go to the departure lounge and wait for the French officer there.

It was 1900 and the lounge was empty. At that moment the doors were flung open and 30 - 40 armed men in complete silence entered the lounge, all armed to the teeth and sat down again in total silence! Ten minutes went by and then the same doors opened and in walked a very dapper second world war colonel in jungle green uniform with two rows of medal ribbons adorning his chest and accompanied by the adjutant. The troopers stood to attention. The Col went and talked to every trooper instilling confidence in them for the operation that was in store for them.

It was a treat to see: leadership in stark reality. I've no doubt that those troopers left in no doubt as to what they had to accomplish. As it was, I heard the Beverley engines start up - don't we all know that as OBAs - and then the movements officer announced that the troopers were to make their way to aircraft for departure.

The situation was that there were incursions from the north of nationalists forces - this was the reason for the SAS deployment.

Next week, a further explanation of the package I had to deliver!

Regards to all OBAs

Charles

 

From: Greg Saunders, Carterton, UK gregsaunders@breathe.com
Date: 04 Jul 2002 19:49
Subject: Corporal Lee "Pob" Heads

Hi Tony,

As was mentioned in the previous OBB, Corporal Lee Heads (known to all in the trade affectionately as "Pob") was tragically killed in a road traffic accident recently along with his fiancée Claire. 

Pob was serving at RAF Brize Norton on C-Shift and was shortly to go on PWR to the Falklands. His death has hit many of us on the squadron hard. His funeral was held yesterday (Thursday 3rd July) in Nuneaton and was attended by between 60 and 70 movers in full dress uniform. An excellent turnout, with representatives from Brize, Lyneham, Waddington, Andover, High Wycombe, Hannover, Cyprus and Gibraltar. A very touching tribute was read out in the church by Cpl George Kerr in what was a very moving service. I would like to say a few words about my mate Pob...

I first met Pob when I arrived on A-Shift at RAF Northolt in 1992. He had arrived there a month or so before me and we quickly became close mates. We were a close knit bunch back then, Strath McNair, Steve Elliot, Troy Cousins, Orm Palmer and Phil Clayton to name but a few. We had many drunken nights, bust-ups and bickering over women! All the things you'd expect from a bunch of young lads...but our friendship was never in question. Pob was one of life's true characters... always a smile on his face and an infectious enthusiasm that rubbed off on everyone he met. 

Not a lot ever got him down, some of us secretly suspected he was on "happy pills"!! In 1995 we went our separate ways, Pob to Brize Norton and myself to Lyneham. Although contact in the intervening years was infrequent (the Pengelly football tournament and beer-calls usually) I always knew I could count on him if needed. Pob went on to do a tour on the MSF at RAF Waddington, and I believe it was here he met Claire.

Promotion in 2002 found us both serving at Brize Norton, Pob on C-Shift and myself on D-Shift. At handover time we would always get together for a chat and Pob always seemed interested in what I was up to, however mundane. At the start of the year during Op Telic and the deployment of forces to the Gulf, Pob found himself detached to the Air Freight Centre at Andover where he quickly became a popular figure, as was the case everywhere he served. On his return to Brize Norton we found ourselves working in different sections and unfortunately our chats became rarer as he was on Traffic and I was in Load Control.

It is with deep regret I never got a chance to say goodbye to my mate, and I think I can say with 100% certainty that this is a feeling shared by everyone else who knew him. I have many stories about Pob, but they're for another time and another place, probably over a few beers! 

I don't wish to give the impression this is complete summary of his career in the RAF - just my personal memories. Pob was a true friend, one of life's genuine nice-guys, a bloke who could break a dark mood with a couple of one liners, for who nothing was too much trouble. He will be sadly missed.

I would like to pass on my thanks to his mum and dad on behalf of the boys at Brize, as they put £150 behind the squadron bar last week for us all to have a few beers on what would have been his 31st birthday. 

I'm sure Pob would have been gutted to have missed what was a blinding beer-call...  However, I'm sure he would have been chuffed to see that both at the beer-call and his funeral he was responsible for reuniting a lot of movers who had strayed out of touch. It is unfortunate that it takes something like this to get us movers back together, and reminds us that maybe we could put a bit more effort into staying in contact with our mates in the trade. A valuable lesson to be learnt... 
Thank you for the opportunity to let me say a few words here. 

Here is a picture taken at Northolt sometime in 1993. This is how I will remember  him - not a care in the world and a pulling a daft face! 


Corporal Greg Saunders
Bzz Air Movements Squadron

 

The RAF base at Lyneham, Wilts, is to close by 2012 as part of a strategic review of air bases, the Ministry of Defence said yesterday (8th July 2003). About 580 jobs will be lost.

The decision was attacked by the Tories. They said the closure might make it impossible for the RAF to carry out an operation similar to that during the war in Iraq when Lyneham was the base for hundreds of flights.

Adam Ingram, the Armed Forces minister, said the 60-year-old base would remain open until the RAF's Hercules C130K heavy lift fleet went out of service. It would then be sold unless a new use was found for it.

Jack Dromey, of the Transport and General Workers' Union, said the base and its 2,500 personnel supported many businesses.

"Many of the people involved have just come back from service in the Gulf. This will come as a shock to them and a body blow to the local community."

The air base review, announced in November 2001, was prompted by the anticipated arrival at the end of this decade of the new Future Strategic Tanker Aircraft and A400M tactical transport aircraft, both of which will be based at RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire.

Mr Ingram said the RAF's air transport and air refuelling fleets, including the Hercules C130Js currently at Lyneham, would be based at Brize Norton by 2012.

Concentrating aircraft fleets at Brize Norton would lead to an overall loss of 1,780 service and 360 civilian posts.

Bernard Jenkin, the shadow defence secretary, said the Tories had given warning of defence cuts and the Government had denied it.

"The big question is whether Brize Norton's single runway could have provided enough capacity to support all the recent military flights to and from the Gulf.

"If this single runway were forced to close because of an accident or terrorist attack, the rapid deployment capability would be crippled."

He said that the Lyneham decision foreshadowed the spending round and the autumn defence review, when cuts in ships, tanks, recruitment targets and aircraft orders could be expected

 

From: Gordon Gourdie, Euxton, UK gordongourdie@hotmail.com
To: Ian Berry, Swindon, UK iwberry@supanet.com
Date: 05 Jul 2003 07:59
Subject: Lyneham Closure

Ian,

There are two threads running on PPrune re Lyneham closure. I thought you would have had plenty to contribute on that subject.

I have put a few grenades into the Magic Kingdom this week and managed to grab the 100th post.

The Riyadh element have now gone off on holiday so it will probably be quiet for a couple of weeks.

Regards,

Gordon

 

From: Ian Berry, Swindon, UK iwberry@supanet.com
To: Gordon Gourdie, Euxton, UK gordongourdie@hotmail.com
Date: 05 Jul 2003 16:33
Subject: Re: Lyneham Closure

Too early to reply as it's got 9 years to run. Some enlisted tw^t sent a text to the local radio station saying it was good news as he'd had no hot water for a month. What he was missing was the fact that obviously they knew what was going on and were starting to save on costs. 

What worries me is this is all hinged on the Airbus A400M stealth prop job and I still believe it won't happen. All those Eurpoean countries involved - even in NATO we were never all together. Just watch as I reckon further down the road someone will pull out and torpedo the deal. 

The media also state that no other service is interested in taking over Lyneham. Well, if there's no hot water it won't
become Tumbledown or Um Qasr Barracks will it? It's about time FedEx, TNT or DHL made a bid....

Ian

 

A freshman at Eagle Rock Junior High won first prize at the Greater Idaho Falls Science Fair recently. He was attempting to show how conditioned we have become to the alarmists practicing junk science and spreading fear of everything in our environment.

In his project he urged people to sign a petition demanding strict control or total elimination of the chemical "dihydrogen monoxide." And for plenty of good reasons, since it can:

1. cause excessive sweating and vomiting
2. it is a major component in acid rain
3. it can cause severe burns in its gaseous state
4. accidental inhalation can kill you
5. it contributes to erosion
6. it decreases effectiveness of automobile brakes
7. it has been found in tumors of terminal cancer patients

He asked 150 people if they supported a ban of the chemical.

One hundred forty-three said yes, six were undecided, and only one knew that the chemical was......

Water! 

The title of his prize winning project was, "How Gullible Are We?"

 

From: Stuart Clarke, Brighton, UK stuart@wild-dream.com
Date: 04 Jul 2003 21:50
Subject: TV Documentary - Medmenham

Dear Sir

I wonder if you may be able to help?

We are producing a TV documentary about the maps used in the D Day landings.

I wonder if you know of anyone who can talk about RAF Medmenham? We are specifically looking to find photographic interpreters who worked there

Do you think you could help - or point us in the right direction?

Kind regards

Stuart Clarke
Wild Dream Films

http://www.wild-dream.com 

 

From: David Cromb, Brisbane Qld., Australia djcromb@bigpond.com
Date: 05 Jul 2003 11:31
Subject: Oman & Dhofar

Hi Tony,

Great briefs last week, well done!

Been reading up on Britain's small wars especially the Suez articles and then surfed onto the above subject, "Flying in Oman" 

I often flew into Salalah on C-130s during my holiday in Masirah, usually on the Seeb shuttle. Strangely enough I didn't mind doing that trip, often taking the place of another who for some reason or other didn't want to do it. It was a change of scenery and the chance of better DF's.

In the article it mentioned that the VC-10's were able to operate into Salalah, is that so? I mean you've been there for a holiday. When landing in the Hercs " braking" was always spectacular, heaps of dust and deafening noise from the engines as the aircraft was brought to a halt. I'm no expert, but it always appeared that the runway was a little on the short side.

Also, whilst sunning myself in Masirah, we regularly transshipped ammo pallets from VC-10's onto C-130's, was usually done in darkness as well. But I believe that was only done because of limited ACHE at downtown Salalah.

The Hercs were usually parked between 2 bloody great concrete walls, nicely decorated with "all this and sport thrown in". Do you remember that, or was it not there at your time? I wouldn't have thought the VC-10's would fit between those walls, so where would they park them?

Maybe Alan Warwick-Moore has some input. Where are you Algy? It's your turn for an article or 10.

Anyway Tony that's my rambling for this week. I would be happy to be corrected on any of the above, providing it's constructive.

Just on that "and sport thrown in" facilities weren't that hot, not in '72 anyway. Swimming pool was fine, but not so the cricket wicket. I was invited to play in a match between Masirah & Salalah. Traveled in style on that occasion, courtesy of 46 Squadron Andovers.

The cricket was a fizzer, but the social side of things was good, I think! Didn't seem to matter that the transit beds were of the safari design in the library either... memories.

Cheers for now mate, be good, be aware & be safe.

DC

[Ed:  I've never heard of a VC-10 landing in Salalah - in the 60s and 70s the runway consisted of hard packed sand.  When I revisited Salalah in the early 70's there were no concrete walls to hide the aircraft from mortar attack, just huge rows of sand filled 45 gallon drums.  There were a few occasions when the ATC was asleep and the arriving aircraft, normally an Argosy or a Beverley, would announce their arrival by flying at low level over the camp.  Then there was a real panic where all involved would rush to their respective posts to service the aircraft.  As for facilities;  the cinema consisted of an outside brick wall painted white with about 30 or so hard steel folding chairs placed in front.  At nighttime, when the film was showing, the temperature would dip to a freezing 80 degrees F., a drop of some 40 degrees from the daytime norm - and we would sit wrapped in blankets, with our feet feeling like blocks of ice.  The swimming pool was only completed in the spring of '67, just two months before my departure.  There was the NAAFI of course, and the Fireman's club.]

 

From: Brian Harper, Thumrait, Oman brianharper@lineone.net
Date: 06 Jul 2003 06:36
Subject: Change of Location

Hi Tony,

Please change my location as I intend to stay here in Oman with the other members of OBA in Thumrait. 

We spend time during the day/night sitting on sandbags and swinging the light - of course with a cold beer or two! 

My wife will joining me in August

Rgds

Big Brian Harper

 

From: Pete Webber, Brize Norton, UK pete.s.webber@ntlworld.com
Date: 07 Jul 2003 14:56
Subject: Images from the web site

Hi

I am trying to put together a new training package for use at the Movements School. I am sure you will be glad to hear that one of the subjects to be taught in the new BMT (Basic Movements Training) will be trade history.

Can I download some images from the gallery to include in this presentation, full credit will be given.

Thanks

Pete Webber 

[Ed:  I can go one better Pete - if you let me know which images you want I can send you them to you in the original larger size.  Unfortunately, because of the expense of running a web site such as this, I have to adjust the size of the images on the site in order to reduce the cost to myself.]

 

From: Pete Clayton, Swindon, UK Peter.Clayton@thameswater.co.uk
Date: 08 Jul 2003 03:15
Subject: Christmas Island

Hi All

Just read the briefs concerning the tests etc at Woomera, and Christmas Island was mentioned.

My Father, Len (Flit) Clayton served on Christmas Island between October 1957 and July 1958. One of his jobs was to spray the Island for mosquitoes with DDT (possibly), hence his name FLIT (the old Fly Spray). He used to fly over the Island on a daily basis and one of his claims to fame was spraying the Officers Mess one day from a suitable height. The aircraft was an Auster 9 No. XK410, in his log book he also has a flight in a Valiant No. XD822, the notes describe the flight as an Overshoot Bombing at 40,000 feet. This flight was on April 16, 1958.

His flight out to Christmas Island was in a Super Constellation and he returned to Lyneham in a Hastings, he was a Sergeant Pilot at the time, later to reach Master Pilot before retiring.

Unfortunately my Father died from throat cancer whilst in Hong Kong, I always felt that this was caused by the tests on the Island but we never pursued the matter. His remains are at Lyneham village church that I occasionally visit, not in the military side of the graveyard  - that is a shame, but powers that be etc. etc...

Peter Clayton
UKMAMS Lyneham 1974-78

 

From: David Powell, Princes Risborough, UK DJPowellLtd@compuserve.com
Date: 09 Jul 2003 09:00
Subject: Chatter

Hi Tony

Lyneham to close - Europe forces GM crops down our throats - Our water is to be poisoned with flouride - Finding it tough to pick up new (paying) work.

I needed cheering up, and came across the following on the news page at http://www.gbrail.org.uk  

Well it made me smile!

Regards

David Powell

Travel companies daftest complaints!

1. "We paid a sea-view supplement for our Spanish apartment but were disgusted that all we could see from our window was sea. We would therefore like our sea-view supplement back!"

2. "We couldn't sleep in our hotel because of all the silence!"

3. A middle-aged man wrote complaining about his London hotel room's power shower: "It blasted my head with such violence it tore out my hair. I looked down and saw it all going down the plug hole, which is why I now have a bald spot!"

4. "I would like a £37 refund. While in Turkey, my nine-year-old daughter drank 37 cans of Coke at £1 each and was sick!"

5. "We were disgusted to discover the beach was nothing more than a sandy area between the land and the sea!"

6. "Your brochure misled us about the beach. Your photo shows it to be composed of yellow sand whereas it is in fact beige!"

7. "The sand on the beach was too fine. It got into all our bodily openings, causing discomfort, especially to my wife's lady area. You did not warn us about this before we booked!"

8. "We were disappointed with the hotel hair salon. It only had one hairdresser and she was dead!"

9. A man unhappy with his Spanish holiday wrote: "There were too many Spanish people. The hotel receptionists were Spanish, the food was Spanish and there were just too many foreigners in general. Even the TV was Spanish!"

10. "The beach was a bit annoying - I had to keep moving my sun lounger as the sun kept moving!"

11. I was mugged by a Barbary ape, who ran off with my camcorder. He played with it before throwing it over the cliff. You should have warned me this would happen!"

12. "We were on our honeymoon and a Tunisian belly dancer kept pestering my husband, forcing him to tuck £5 in her knickers. This caused a row between us and a subsequent breakdown in our marriage!"

 

Steven Spielberg was discussing his new project - an action docudrama about famous composers starring top movie stars. Sylvester Stallone, Steven Segall, Bruce Willis, and Arnold Schwarzenegger were all present. Spielberg strongly desired the box office 'oomph' of these superstars, so he was prepared to allow them to select whatever composers they would portray, as long as they were very famous.

"Well," started Stallone, "I've always admired Mozart. I would love to play him."

"Chopin has always been my favorite, and my image would improve if people saw me playing the piano," said Willis. "I'll play him."

"I've always been partial to Strauss and his waltzes," said Segall. "I'd like to play him."

Spielberg was very pleased with these choices. "Sounds splendid." Then, looking at Schwarzenegger, he asked, "Who do you want to be, Arnold?"

So Arnold says, "I'll be Bach."

 

Well, that's it for this week

Have a great weekend!

Best regards

Tony