Not Your Average News Stories + Video: Week of May 12, 2014

This week: Celebrate TGIF at the Riviera on the Platte while reading sizzling love letters.

Strange, Unusual and Just Plain Odd

Omaha, mais oui! Nebraska tourism officials unveiled their new slogan this week: “Visit Nebraska. Visit Nice.” Turns out a lot of nice Nebraskans find this slogan kind of boring. We found it kind of confusing: Are they giving you a choice of visiting Omaha or the French Riviera?

The LAX deluge – well, no: California Gov. Jerry Brown says he was wrong about sea water eventually inundating Los Angeles International in the next 200 years (perhaps he was thinking of the next Hollywood disaster epic). Besides – 200 years? We’ll all have flying cars by then.

More cool elite perks: If you’re one of those special passengers on United, you’ll soon rate a chauffeur-driven Mercedes at LAX to shuttle you between connecting flights. What’s shocking is how long it took to get this service in LA since it’s already available at Chicago, Houston, Newark and San Francisco. Maybe they feared the deluge?

Jet bridge falls: It happened in Seattle as passengers were getting off a Southwest flight – that covered bridge that connects plane with airport fell, maybe 6 to 8 feet. Amazingly, no one was hurt.

Luggage thieves get jail: A former United airlines employee and his wife were sentenced for stealing luggage but these weren’t just any bags; the couple took advantage of the chaos surrounding the Asiana plane crash in San Francisco last summer to make their move. He got nine months, she got six. Is that enough?

Better seats – maybe: Flip-up seats on planes is supposedly the answer to more room in the cabin – but are they comfortable? Look at the pictures and you decide.

Social media travel: Where do people want to go before they die, according to tweets and such? The usual suspects like New York, Los Angeles and Paris but also Bali (well, sure!), Venezuela and Hokkaido, Japan. How about you?

Plane vs. drone: An American Airlines pilot said he almost hit one of those unmanned, remotely piloted aircraft in March but the big fear was it might have been sucked into an engine which as the FAA helpfully notes, could have been “catastrophic.” Which brings up a good point: Who regulates drones? That is a question without a definitive answer, it seems, at least for now.

Love letter: Richard Branson tried crowd-surfing for the right of Virgin America to fly out of Dallas’ Love Field and now he’s penned a video love letter. A sample: “My virile young planes, a yearning for your runways.” Ooh, Richard! [see below] UPDATE: It worked, Richie – you got those Love Field gates!

Bad bird: A US Airways flight from New York’s LaGuardia was hit by a bird Friday night and returned to the airport (no one was hurt). Did you know? In March, a seagull punched a hole in the nose of a JetBlue plane. You might be shocked at how common this is.

VIDEO: A video love letter. Or is it a lust letter? It is a funny letter.

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Published: May 12, 2014