An Ask the Pilot Pop Quiz

October 21, 2016

THIS QUIZ QUESTION has nothing at all to do with aviation — which is partly why I like it. To answer correctly, it would help to have at least a passing knowledge of certain, uh, counterculture movements circa 1982.

The two photos below were taken recently in Davis Square, in Somerville, Massachusetts (in fact they were taken only about half a block from each other, on different days). The graphic designs you see in the pictures are tongue-in-cheek. They are knockoffs, parodies, being used here to advertise a product completely unrelated to the original. The sweatshirt is advertising a local microbrewery. But that design is from elsewhere. “Maximum Hesh,” meanwhile, is the name of a local skateboard shop. The sticker, like the sweatshirt, borrows from something else.

The Winter Hill Brewing Company has nothing to do with Max Hesh; but curiously they both were inspired by the same general thing, from around the same time. What is that thing? Is it a TV show? A movie? Something about music? A book? You tell me.

Send your answer to:



The first person with the correct response wins his or her choice of an autographed copy of my book, or, if preferred, this Emirates first class stationery kit. This is the same writing kit found aboard Emirates’ 777 and A380 first class suites (as demonstrated by yours truly in the picture below). It includes several small envelopes, writing paper, and a handsome ballpoint pen marked with the Emirates name and logo. The kit shown below is opened, but the one I’m giving away is sealed.



Update: October 24, 2016. And the Winner Is…

Congratulations to reader Jack Swetland, who was first to answer correctly.

The common theme is music. In particular, underground music of the early 1980s. The sweatshirt is a take-off of the “This is Boston, Not L.A.” record — an iconic compilation album featuring local hardcore punk bands from Boston. It was released in 1982. (The guy wearing the sweatshirt couldn’t have been more than 25 years-old. I stopped him and asked if he knew the origins of the design. He said, “Yeah, it’s that punk rock thing.”) The Max Hesh sticker also steals from an underground rock album from that same year. That would be the Misfits’ “Walk Among Us” LP.

Jack opted for the book and not the stationery kit. The kit is still available, if anybody wants it. First come, first serve.


Walk Among Us

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