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Tire Recall Grounds Concorde

All Air France and British Airways Concorde jetliners have been grounded in order to comply with the Bridgestone/Firestone tire recall program.

"Yep, they all have to be replaced" says Bernie Scopel, mechanic at Heathrow Airport. "It's sad to see the jobs go, we had to hire six extra mechanics just to handle tire replacement since they started using the Bridgestone/Firestone tires".

The recall is expected to result in only 240 flights being canceled and a general 15% delay system wide over the next two weeks.

Airline officials are careful to play down the groundings, stating that they usually ground the aircraft for a few days this time of year to "chloride" the tires for extra winter traction.  "With chloride (a mixture of road salt and water) in the tires, the pilot can de-ice a runway quickly by landing hard to blow a tire which would spray Calcium Chloride across the runway to melt ice" says Scopel. "The Firestone tires were great at blowing on landings-- a skill that was nearly impossible with the Goodyear tires they previously used".

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September 15, 2000 issue

Blarney Stone Unhealthy-
Castle Closed

Citing mounting health concerns, the Irish Ministry of Health has condemned the famed Blarney Castle and it's famous stone.

"Complaints of foolishness by those who visited, and kissed, the stone have risen dramatically this past year" cites Paddy O'Murray, Deputy Health Minister.  "We are concerned that stone borne bacteria may be active on the surface of the Blarney stone".

Though there have been no known deaths caused by kissing the stone, numerous complaints of excessive joviality and waggishness have been reported. The symptoms are said to last from three to twelve hours, thereafter the individual returns to normal. Locals have nicknamed the problem "Mad Blarney Disease".

"But that's the whole point" argues Colleen McKinney, leader of a small group protesting the closing of the castle. "For centuries people have kissed the stone specifically in order to experience a few hours of Blarney". McKinney contends that the condemnation is more for political rather than health reasons. "Politicians don't like to see people having fun", she laments.

Miss USA Disabled Due To Waves

After a six year court battle, former Miss USA Pamela Krydon has been awarded a $4.5 million settlement blaming her carpal tunnel syndrome on the repetitive motion of waving in parades during her year as Miss USA.

"This is a victory for all beauty queens" says Ms Krydon. "The pain and suffering that we endure has gone unacknowledged for too long".

Pageant officials were reluctant to comment and fear an onslaught of similar suits from other contestants and winners. 

The Ford Motor Company, a pageant sponsor and codefendant in the suit, has agreed to supply specially modified industrial robots to future pageants and parades. These robots (taken from the now defunct Willow Run assembly plant) will be placed in front of future Miss USA's and will wave a neoprene hand at paradegoers, sparing future beauty queens the risk of acquiring the painful condition.




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