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Saturday, December 30, 2006

I'm trying not to laugh

But it's difficult.

(Via TRP, who finally got to cash in his World Cup pool win with me last week.)

Comments (4)

He wound up just up the road from Glendive -- should have stopped in and said hi to Oy.

Not as uncommon as you might think. And it can be done without a computer's help.

Back in the early '70s I lived in the DC suburb of Reston, VA., right adjacent to Washingon Dulles Airport. Had a neighbor, Peter Hemmingson, who was South African by birth, ex-patrot Brit by ethnicity.

Peter's mother then lived in Cape Town. Peter with his South African accented British educated voice was making arrangements for his mother's trip from Cape Town to D.C., by way of London. While speaking telephonically with folks employed by what was then still BOAC (now British Airways) who were resident in the US and natie US Eglish seakers, Peter managed to make himself so mis understood by the BOAC reservations folks that his
Mum wound up routed from Cape Town to London to New York to Dallas, Texas, rather than "Dulles". Why Peter was insisting upon giving the airport name rather than the city name I do not know.

Fortunately, an alert BOAC person in London caught the error in conversation with Peter's Mum while getting her checked in for the London / NYC flight.

It doesn't take a computer to mess up like that.

Sydney seems to figure often in these stories. There are several Sidneys in Canada that have attracted less-detail-oriented travelers who were trying to go to Australia from Europe. (One wonders if they might have been distracted by lower fares.) And then there's the Oakland/Auckland couplet. Spoken in some English accents, 'Auckland' sounds about the same as the American pronunciation of 'Oakland'.

thats why the North Bend Airport changed its name to something long and stupid and pretentious sounding... People trying to get to Bend, and North Bend Washington were ending up on the south coast.

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