Sunday, September 30, 2012

If You Need to Fly, Taki Recommends the G550

Taki writes:

NUEVA YORK–The dateline is in Spanish because I have yet to hear any English spoken here in the Bagel, and I landed in some style more than 24 hours ago.

Never mind. Flying at 47,000 feet at close to 500 knots per hour on a G550 is as close to perfection in traveling as it gets. The G550 is the Mozart / Beethoven / Schubert / Schumann / Edward Hopper / Degas / William Holden / Burt Lancaster / John Wayne / Papa Hemingway / F. Scott Fitzgerald / Lew Hoad / Roy Emerson / Robert E. Lee / Hasso von Manteuffel of airplanes. There, you get my point, dontcha? Way up there, close to the angels, there ain’t no turbulence, the plane glides like a giant bird, and silently to boot. And it still has tricks up its sleeve. The cabin is pressurized at 3,000 feet, a bit like lunching up at the Eagle Club, whereas the peasants are pressured at 9,000, where throats get dry quicker than a Bill Clinton lie, pregnant women are known to give premature birth, and drink gets the better of men and women of the lower persuasion.Two American ex-fighter pilots and a Greek engineer are in the cockpit. Two very pretty ladies serve us lunch, dinner, and fine red wine. We read the papers, and before we know it we’re over land and closing down on a Statue of Liberty, which is shining in glorious color as the sun sets in the west. We’re up over West Point and follow the Hudson south down to Westchester Airport, open to private planes only, natch.

My host had me sit up in the cockpit as we first crossed the American coastline. What struck me about the G550 instrument panel was its simplicity. There is even a three-dimensional map which can guide the plane around forests, hills, and tall buildings if need be. Americans believe in computers bossed by humans. Europeans have humans under orders to computers. Ergo the Air France accident which dropped the Airbus into the ocean off Brazil. “You did that on purpose,” I teased the captain as he landed it manually and came to a dead stop without the reverse thrust within 250 yards. Now that’s what I call flying with a capital “F.” (As well as, pun intended, the high life).

The next time any of you has fifty million big ones lying around, do order a G550. Tell them Taki recommends it highly; it beats flying easyJet.

Read more here.


  1. 250 yards my ass. I think the dickhead forgot a 0.

    The only way to land a 75,000 pound plane in 250 yards is with the gear up. That beast needs over 5,000' to get it up and 3,000 to put it down.

  2. Or he meant 250 yards *left* of tarmac before hitting grass.

    1. With the hilly runway at HPN? Unless they were landing to the south which isn't the prevailing I doubt it.