Smoker tried to open plane door

From the desperate for a fag department:

A French woman has admitted attempting to open an aeroplane door mid-flight so that she could smoke a cigarette.

Sandrine Helene Sellies, 34, who has a fear of flying, had drunk alcohol and taken sleeping tablets ahead of the flight from Hong Kong to Brisbane.

She was seen on the Cathay Pacific plane walking towards a door with an unlit cigarette and a lighter.

She then began tampering with the emergency exit until she was stopped by a flight attendant.

Reminds me of the Bill Hicks piece:

Now get this, I’ve been travelling all over the country on British Air. No smoking on British Air. Now let me get this straight, no smoking, right, but they allow children. Little fairness, huh? “Well smoking bothers me.” Well guess what? I was on this one flight right, I’m flying, I’m sleeping on the plane, I’m fucking “knackered”. Very tired right and I feel this tapping on my head. And I look up and there’s this little kid – loose! on the fucking plane, he’s just loose. It’s his playground in the sky. And he has decided that his job is to repetitively tap me on the top of the head. I look across the aisle at his mom. she’s just smiling, you know. Guy next to the mom goes, “They’re so cute when they’re that small.” Isn’t that amazing, letting your kid run loose on a fucking plane. And then the kid runs over to the emergency exit and he starts flipping that handle to the door. And the guy next to the mom starts to get up, and I go, “Wait a minute… we’re about to learn an important lesson right here.” Kwoooshh. Boy you’re right, the smaller he gets, the cuter he is. God, I wish I had a camera right now. With a telescopic lens. Love to get a picture of his face when his pudgy little legs hit that farmhouse down there. Aah, aah, kids. Ha hha. Stewardess, since we got a breeze in here can we smoke now? Fairly well circulated at this point. Woosh. True story. But, you know.

Police: Wife of TV legal analyst slain

This could turn into an even bigger trial than the ones Daniel Horowitz is involved with.

The wife of prominent defense attorney and TV legal analyst Daniel Horowitz was found slain in the entryway of the couple’s San Francisco Bay area home, authorities said Sunday.

Horowitz, currently leading the defense in a sensational murder trial, called 911 Saturday evening to report that he found his wife, Pamela Vitale, dead in their home, police said.

Contra Costa County sheriff’s deputies said Sunday that the death was being investigated as a homicide. An autopsy was planned Monday to determine how she was killed.

“We talked to a number of people last night, but there’s nobody in custody. We’re still trying to establish a motive,” said spokesman Jimmy Lee.

Venezuela plane crash kills 160

Jaysus these things do seem to come in threes, first the Air France crash in Toronto, then Greece, now Venezuela

A Colombian airliner has crashed in a remote mountainous area of Venezuela killing all 160 people on board. The 152 passengers were from the French Caribbean island of Martinique – the eight crew members were Colombian, West Caribbean Airways said.

Mikhail Khodorkovsky: Letter from a Russian prison

The former head of Yukos with a letter to the outside world. He warns:

I have already realized that wealth, and especially vast wealth, does not in itself make a person free. As a co-owner of Yukos, I had to make enormous efforts to protect this wealth. I had to limit myself in everything that might harm this possession.

I avoided saying many things, because speaking candidly could harm my possessions. I had to close my eyes to many things, to put up with many things, all for the sake of my assets, to preserve and to increase them. I controlled my possessions; they controlled me.

So I would like to warn young people today, those who will soon come to power: Do not envy those who have great wealth.

Do not think that their life is easy and comfortable. Property creates new possibilities, but it also paralyzes a person’s creative forces, it dilutes the personality. It is a cruel tyranny, the tyranny of property.

I have been transformed. I am becoming a normal person (economically, a member of the well-to-do middle class), for whom what is most important is not to acquire, but to live. The struggle now is not for property, but for myself, for the right to be myself.

In this struggle, popularity ratings, official contacts and public relations gimmicks are not important. All that is important is you, yourself – your feelings, ideas, talents, will, intellect and faith.

This is, indeed, the only possible and correct choice – the choice of freedom.

I have great pity for those authorities who sincerely believe that they are doing a good thing for the country, for the people. The road to hell is paved with good intentions. Further down this road they will realize that repressive methods and the forced redistribution of wealth are not compatible with modern economic development. And they will not be able to limit this assault to Khodorkovsky, Yukos or the oligarchs – their victims will be many, including those who created this machinery.

My persecutors know that there’s not a shred of evidence of any guilt on my part. But that’s irrelevant, since they could always accuse me of something else – burning down the Moscow Manege, or economic counterrevolution. I’ve been told that they want to put me away for a long time – five years or more – because they fear that I will seek revenge.

These simple people judge others by themselves. Relax: I have no intention of becoming a Count of Monte Cristo. To breathe the spring air, to play with children studying at an ordinary Moscow school, to read good books – all this is so much more important, more right and more pleasant than multiplying wealth and settling scores.

I thank God that unlike my persecutors, I have understood that making more money is far from the only (or most important) goal of human endeavors.

For me, the time of big money is in the past. Now, freed from the burden of the past, I am determined to work for the benefit of those generations that will soon take charge of our country. Generations that will come with new values and new hopes.