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Tally ho, y'all
January 8, 2011 4:06 AM   Subscribe

A Yank in the (virtual) RAF
posted by protorp (25 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite

 
Looks really good!
posted by dougrayrankin at 4:32 AM on January 8, 2011


Also, he looks like Master Bra'tac.
posted by dougrayrankin at 4:38 AM on January 8, 2011


Just a word of warning... the use of the word "yank", while not yours, may antagonise some of our American friends.

I've been told, by an American, that it's offensive. Which is a bummer as
Australians call them that quite often. I'd love to hear from some here as to how they feel about it... as an aside.

Otherwise, interesting article.
posted by taff at 4:46 AM on January 8, 2011


To foreigners, a Yankee is an American.
To Americans, a Yankee is a Northerner.
To Northerners, a Yankee is an Easterner.
To Easterners, a Yankee is a New Englander.
To New Englanders, a Yankee is a Vermonter.
And in Vermont, a Yankee is somebody who eats pie for breakfast.
posted by dougrayrankin at 4:56 AM on January 8, 2011 [21 favorites]


I'm an American, and it never even occurred to me to take "yank" as offensive. Anecdotal evidence, data point, etc.
posted by Faint of Butt at 5:16 AM on January 8, 2011 [1 favorite]


AKA a 'Sherman' - Sherman Tank = Yank

Or a Septic (same pattern)

Baffling to most Americans (which is kind of the point)
posted by DanCall at 5:20 AM on January 8, 2011


I've been told, by an American, that it's offensive. Which is a bummer as
Australians call them that quite often. I'd love to hear from some here as to how they feel about it... as an aside.


Doesn't bother me a bit, in fact I much prefer it over that other word . . .

Nice post btw.
posted by nola at 5:33 AM on January 8, 2011


I've got to show this to my dad, he'll be all over it. And even though I'm English but consider myself to be something of an anti-national, I too get all glassy-eyed when I see formations of Spitfires at air shows and think about the horror and brutaility of the Battle Of Britain contrasted with the well-documented honour and sheer gentleman-ness of many of the participants (on both sides, as noted in the article).
posted by NeonSurge at 5:43 AM on January 8, 2011


Good post, love his enthusiasm.
posted by arcticseal at 6:34 AM on January 8, 2011


a Yankee is somebody who eats pie for breakfast.

We live in Maine, but that combined with the above is enough to make my wife a yankee.
Also, as an American I never minded 'yank' when I lived in the UK, but never did appreciate 'septic' all that much.
posted by monkeymadness at 7:00 AM on January 8, 2011


And in Vermont, a Yankee is somebody who eats pie for breakfast.

Now I'm confused. How am I supposed to love and hate The Yankees at the same time?
posted by eriko at 7:10 AM on January 8, 2011


I'm an American, and it never even occurred to me to take "yank" as offensive. Anecdotal evidence, data point, etc.

In the southern US, Yank isn't a term of endearment, because they're still fighting the US Civil War.

When I was living in the south, my response to being called a Yank in this sense was to ask if we really needed to burn down Atlanta again to convince them that they lost.
posted by eriko at 7:15 AM on January 8, 2011 [4 favorites]


I can pepper my flight sim reviews with as much talk of retreating blade stalls, snap rolls and skip bombing as I like, but until I get round to building a simpit and joining a virtual combat squadron, my hardcore flight simmer credentials will always look a tad suspect. John Nation, a chap I’ve been swapping emails with for a while, is the real deal.

How is someone in a "flight simulator squadron" the real deal? Aren't there actual veterans of the Battle of Britain still around?

Also, the idea that World War II was somehow more gentlemanly than the current wars is delusional. UK pilots were stopping German pilots from deliberately dropping bombs on population centers to kill civilians.

World War II was far more brutal on all sides than the current war. Germany sent task forces behind their own lines to shoot 2.5 million jews. It kidnapped millions of Russians and Ukranians to work as laborers. The Russians motivated their troops forward with a rolling artillery barrage--behind their own soldiers.

The Japanese raped Nanking. The British firebombed German cities with bombs that were essentially made of pure magnesium. The US firebombed Tokyo until it was 99.9% destroyed and dropped 2 atomic bombs on civilians when their own army planners expected 30,000 total US casualties in their plans to invade Japan.

In these wars now, you have hugely complicated rules of engagement designed to restrict civilian casualties. In World War II it was the policy of every nation state involved to kill enemy civilians. There's just no comparison.
posted by Ironmouth at 7:18 AM on January 8, 2011 [1 favorite]


Just a word of warning... the use of the word "yank", while not yours, may antagonise some of our American friends.

It might, if any of us gave a shit about what anyone else thinks.

Kidding, kidding. I know it's supposed to offend me, but it really doesn't. "American Exceptionalism," however, offends me deeply....so perhaps I'm not your typical case.
posted by nevercalm at 7:39 AM on January 8, 2011


This is great. The sheer level of enthusiastic nerdiness required for this guy to get to this level is just amazing. The bit where he talks about hoping the next version of the sim software includes support for tower controllers is really endearing.

Also, would I go see a movie where a flight sim nerd somehow winds up having to FLY A REAL PLANE TO SAVE THE DAY? Well, I watched both Space Camp AND The Last Starfighter countless times as a kid, so: Yes, yes I would.
posted by pts at 8:09 AM on January 8, 2011


Also, the idea that World War II was somehow more gentlemanly than the current wars is delusional.

Yeah but that's what always happens. Current War - Brutal and senseless, with no honor. Previous War - Gentlemanly and honorable and Correct.

I just remember reading people's reactions to WW1, how no one will ever glorify battle or martial virtue again cause now it's all absurd push-button horror, and thinking "well that didn't happen."
posted by The Whelk at 8:13 AM on January 8, 2011 [1 favorite]


How is someone in a "flight simulator squadron" the real deal? Aren't there actual veterans of the Battle of Britain still around?

hm yes this video game blogger should not talk about video games but instead should interview war veterans
posted by p3on at 8:36 AM on January 8, 2011 [1 favorite]


In the southern US, Yank isn't a term of endearment, because they're still fighting the US Civil War.

Not at of us.

And feel free to stop fighting it yourself anytime.

/derail
posted by BitterOldPunk at 8:59 AM on January 8, 2011


Surely a yankee is someone who has been on the receiving end of a yanking. By a yanker.
posted by Grangousier at 9:04 AM on January 8, 2011


(BoP means "not all of us" couple comments up)

I was an active participant in the MMO WWI aviation sim Dawn of Aces for a couple of years. The sim is now folded into Warbirds (a WWII sim) as an arena option and is largely moribund.

The most successful pilots in DoA were like this guy, hugely devoted to what they were doing and hugely knowledgeable about it. One baseline of their success was a comprehensive knowledge of the precise performance capacities of each one of the aircraft as modeled in the sim - what was the top speed, at what speed in a dive did the a/c begin to shed parts, what was the comparative turning radius, and so on.

It was far from uncommon to learn that another pilot in-game was a pilot IRL, and a certain percentage of those guys were either military or ex-military. Pretty interesting online subculture.
posted by mwhybark at 10:34 AM on January 8, 2011


the use of the word "yank", while not yours, may antagonise some of our American friends.

I think they can handle it. They did in the war. And a lot else besides.
posted by Decani at 12:25 PM on January 8, 2011


I think they can handle it. They did in the war. And a lot else besides.
Would that be the 1917-18 conflict or the 1941-45 conflict?

See what I did there?
posted by dougrayrankin at 12:28 PM on January 8, 2011


Ooh! Look what I found!
posted by Decani at 12:29 PM on January 8, 2011


The only problem I have with 'yank' in this post is that the group of people that I would ever call a Yankee and the group that would actually say 'y'all' are mutually exclusive.
posted by Hargrimm at 12:30 PM on January 8, 2011


See what I did there?
posted by dougrayrankin at 8:28 PM on January 8


Indeed I do, you scamp. Still, I suppose we must concede that better late than never... :-)
posted by Decani at 12:30 PM on January 8, 2011


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