Want to be weightless? On October 9, Zero Gravity Corp., which was cofounded by former astronaut Byron Lichtenberg’69, began offering to fly people twice a month in a modified Boeing 727 piloted to simulate weightlessness. According to a September report by the Associated Press, the company hopes to market the flights to corporations and adventure travelers. Cost: $2,950 a flight.
From Rotisserie into the Fire
Growing up in the Bronx, Mark L. Attanasio ’79 spent a lot of time absorbing the Baseball Encyclopedia and playing Wiffle ball with his brother. Later, he enjoyed rotisserie baseball while getting rich as a money manager. In October, he took his passion even further when he spent $220 million to buy the Milwaukee Brewers, a team that hasn’t put up a winning record in a dozen years. “That''s good news for Attanasio and the former owners of the Brewers,” opined the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, “but it’s especially good news for baseball fans in Wisconsin.”
When a journalistic tempest greeted the 60 Minutes documents suggesting that President Bush shirked his National Guard duty, a blogger named “Buckhead” quickly became an anonymous hero among Bush backers after he accused CBS News of being duped with forgeries. In September, a reporter for the Los Angeles Times revealed that Buckhead was in fact Harry W. MacDougald ’80, an Atlanta lawyer. As more information came out to bolster his claim, MacDougald wrote on his blog, “As for my part, this tsunami would, without any doubt whatsoever, have happened w/o me, so it ain’t no big thang. I will have a cold one tonight, though.”
From Baghdad to Virginia
After spending between eight and ten years as a foreign correspondent, most recently in Iraq, Lee Hockstader ’81 might not seem like the logical choice for his new job as the Washington Post''s editorial page writer covering Maryland and Virgina. The Post’s editorial page, according to the October Washingtonian magazine, is far more influential in Maryland than in Baghdad: “On local matters it can wield the clout of William Randolph Hearst.”
Hold That Vitamin!
“If Reid Mihalko is right,” wrote Libby Copeland in the Washington Post in August, “nearly all of us are desperate for someone, anyone, even someone we’ve just met, to hold us, rub our feet, stroke our hair.… If Reid Mihalko is wrong, then the scores of people who’ve been paying him for the privilege of letting strangers spoon with them are really, really weird.” Mihalko ’92 is coinventor of the “cuddle party,” at which participants pay $30 to, well, pile up and cuddle. “We live in a very touch-deprived society,” Mihalko told the Post, and he’s out to fix that by getting people together for their “daily recommended allowance of touch.”