Thursday, December 07, 2023

I did not know that.

"In 1942, Norman Lear signed up to fight the fascists. He served as a radio operator and gunner in a B-17 bomber named “Umbriago” by its crew, after a catchphrase of the comedian Jimmy Durante. As Lear watched bombs spill out of the plane’s belly over Germany, he said in a 2021 interview with the Yiddish Book Center, his attitude was “Screw ’em.” But there was also a complicating empathy: “I remember thinking, imagining a table of family, of Germans, sitting around the table as the bombs dropped.”"
I did not know that Norman Lear was a veteran of 52 missions over Germany.

See the window just ahead of the "KK" letters, and the two windows in the top of the fuselage above them? Those are the windows Norman Lear would have looked out of from the radio room of "Umbriago". If you want to know the duties of a B-17 radio operator, they're enumerated at this site, along with some good shots of the radio room.

I was too young to really get All in the Family. I was not quite three years old when it premiered and eleven when it ended.

MeTV has been airing four episodes every Sunday evening, and I watched the first several seasons' worth here recently and it was really exceptionally good television. I can see why it was considered so novel for its era, and surprisingly relevant even today.