Monday, September 19, 2011

To the moon, Alice, straight to the moon!

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A collection by Neal McKenna 

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Image Via MimgUgo

The Honeymooners made its debut on the small screen on October 1, 1955 and only lasted one 39 episode season. However these shows are now considered the finest examples of television's Golden Era – the early to mid 1950s.
Jackie Gleason played Ralph Kramden, a bus driver for the fictional Gotham Bus Company. He was never seen driving a bus – except in publicity photos – but is shown multiple times at the bus depot.
Frustrated by his lack of success, Ralph often resorted to hair-brained get-rich-quick schemes which always went down in flames. 
Ralph was also very short tempered, frequently hurling bellowing, insults and hollow threats – primarily at his wife, Alice
This aspect of The Honeymooners was entirely a product of its time. Spousal abuse was still a joke as Ralph, with a raised fist, would bellow: "...One of these days... POW!!! Right in the kisser!" or "One of these days Alice, straight to the Moon!" The audience never failed to find these lines uproariously funny.
Of course, viewers knew Ralph really didn't mean it and that hidden beneath his many layers of bluster was a soft-hearted man who loved his wife and was devoted to his best pal. (Bromance, anyone?) Unfortunately real-life Ralphs were not so benign and knocked their wives for a loop on a regular basis. Still, as an example of Neanderthal role-modelling, the threatening violence and not following through was a step in the right direction.
Alice Kramden, played in the first seven episodes by Pert Kelton and by Audrey Meadows throughout the "classic 39," was Ralph's patient but sharp-tongued wife of roughly 15 years. She often found herself bearing the brunt of Ralph's insults, which she returned with biting sarcasm. 
Alice was everything Ralph was not. She was smart and level headed, in contrast to her husband's half-baked schemes, bluster and super ego. Still she was a true 1950s housewife who allowed her guy to believe he wore the pants when clearly she did. 
In spite of Alice's warnings, Ralph would always pursue his schemes and every time, they would disintegrate. Alice would always be there to help pick up the pieces and forgive him. At this point, Ralph would truly realize Alice had his best interests at heart all along and each episode ended with the same line: "Baby, you're the greatest!" 
Unfortunately, by the next installment, Ralph had forgotten the lesson he'd learned this time around, and it was more of the same. It couldn't have been any other way. Had Ralph learned his lesson, there wouldn't be a story for next week so the cycle repeated itself until September 22, 1956.
Though The Honeymooners had a very short run, it set the mold for sitcoms to follow. Four years later, in 1960, The Flintstones flickered to life on TV screens throughout North America and still flash on flat screens around the world today. The connection is: Ralph Kramden was the inspiration for Fred Flintstone. Fred, like Ralph, is a blusterer, a bonehead, an avid bowler and a man who loves his wife in a Neanderthal sort of way. Yabba-dabba-doo!
Image Via NMania


South African Taxi airline to boldy go where others are 'scared to travel'

Friday, September 18, 2011
Image Via Wordpress
A new airline to open up the skies to taxi commuters was launched at Lanseria airport, north of Johannesburg. 
Santaco Airlines, the brainchild of the South African National Taxi Council, would offer flights between Lanseria, Bhisho in the Eastern Cape and Cape Town.
"This is an historic day for the taxi industry... We are not rewriting history, we are part of the history of South Africa," Santaco secretary-general Philip Taaibosch said at the "proof-of-concept" launch. "We are taking the black community... which has been suffering for many years... to the promised land."

'Dream come true'
Gauteng roads and transport minister Ismail Vadi said the launch of an airline for cash-strapped commuters, specifically black commuters, was a "dream come true."
"The taxi industry has come of age. In the seventies, it was small, uncoordinated, narrow. Over the last 30 to 40 years, the industry has become a major player."
Taxi council president Jabulani Mthembu said the aviation industry was a tough one to break into, but Santaco would "travel where everyone else is scared to travel."
He said the low-cost airline would bring dignity to those whose only experience of aviation had been seeing a plane above their rooftops.
Mthembu said the airline's target market would be people without a car and large income. 
He said Santaco was also looking at the logistics of providing flights to those without internet access or credit cards.
"We will have finalisation of all the details in a month's time to deal with all the blockages." ..."We are bringing the taxi operation on-air," Mthembu said, adding that the service was expected to launch commercially at the end of the year.
The airline may also cater to people wishing to travel with their goats.  
                                       Via The Mail & Guardian 
...And travel with their goats. 
Yep, only in South Africa!
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