The “Harlem Shake,” the YouTube dance meme that was baffling for about five minutes, funny for exactly 47.9 seconds last Tuesday, and then quickly grew tiresome, is causing the Federal Aviation Administration to have a little hissy fit.
According to CNN, a pack of Colorado College students on their way to an ultimate Frisbee tournament in San Diego (I think that entire description is just coded language for “stoned”) convinced their fellow travelers to participate in the dance video midflight. They got the approval of the flight crew and said it took just a minute to film it. Nevertheless, the FAA is “looking into” the matter to see if any rules were broken.
It’s worth wondering if maybe CNN is partly feeding a non-story (the FAA insists it’s not an actual investigation) by going around looking for experts to act like stern oracles of doom from a safety video parody on The Simpsons. They hit the motherlode with retired pilot Jim Tilmon, who is just the worst. He probably yells at people who raise their arms up on rollercoasters:
"If I was king for a day, the criticism would first be leveled at the airline for encouraging this type of thing," said Tilmon, the retired pilot. "It may seem cute but you cannot tell me it is safe to have that number of people up out of their seat jumping up and down."
"If they're on my airplane, they're going to either sit down and fasten their seat belt, or I'm going to find a policeman to help them do it."
Worst remake of Footloose, ever. The experts also worried that the dance could be used to conceal a terrorist act. CNN doesn’t quote anybody on that, so I’m deeply suspicious whether they brought it up themselves or if a CNN reporter or producer did.
Anyway, here’s the video below. Cluck your tongues at the recklessness and worry about what sort of things college students are going to get up to on planes once the sequestration results in the FAA laying everybody off who could save us from the terror of actually having fun on our lengthy cross-country flights: