RUSH: I have to tell you a little story. We were flying out here yesterday afternoon. We got wheels up right on schedule. We got wheels up at four o’clock, and I’m seated in the captain’s chair on EIB One, and I’m watching on my iPad the remainder of the movie The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets’ Nest. I watched the first half of it the day before. I got my headphones on, I’m listening to this, and I looked and see that we’re over Tampa, on our way to Los Angeles. The door from the cockpit opens. The pilot sheepishly walks through the door facing me. I can’t describe the look on his face. He has this dour, sad, scared kinda look that somebody has on their face like they’ve got something to tell you but they just don’t know how they’re gonna tell you. Well, immediately recognizing that look I’m sure affected a look of frustration on my own face, ’cause I was really into the movie. So I took off the real radio announcer headphones that I use when trying to hear audio on my iPad.
The pilot kneels down on one knee and I think, ‘Oh, my gosh, he’s gonna start praying, what’s going on?’ He blinks his eyes, looks to the right, looks to the left, looks to the floor. I don’t say anything, he says, ‘Look, I don’t know how it happened, and I don’t know how to tell you.’ I said, ‘Gee, what could this be?’ ‘We didn’t get your luggage on the plane when we took off.’ I said, ‘Is that what this is about?’ ‘Yeah. You just got your windows tinted in your car. We couldn’t see anything in the back seat, so we didn’t –‘ ‘Oh, so this is my fault? I got my windows tinted for security. You didn’t see any luggage even though you know I’m going to LA for four days.’ ‘Sorry, boss, I don’t know, we can FedEx it, I mean we can get it out to California by –‘ I said, ‘FedEx luggage? Oh, jeez I can’t do that. What if it doesn’t get there? Some of this stuff, I’m doing television shoots — we gotta turn around.’
So we had to turn around over Tampa and head back to West Palm Beach where the airport is — it’s the only time I ever admit being there — and put the luggage back on the airplane. So we got out here an hour late, which was no big deal, but when he came back to tell me that story, the look on his face was, well, you can imagine what I thought. I was waiting for him to do the Troy Polamalu Cross like praying before the play. ‘Oh, my gosh, what is this?’ and it turned to be nothing more than luggage. And I said, ‘Look, this jet fuel — you’re gonna have to dial it back to 550 miles an hour. You’re gonna have to explain to me how this happened.’ He didn’t really say the tinted windows, by the way, that’s what it is, the windows are new, they’re tinted, and he didn’t see the luggage in there, didn’t have the guts to tell me, not guts, courage, don’t misunderstand, I’m just saying this has never happened. So I don’t know what’s gonna happen the rest of this trip. This has never happened. You take off without the luggage.
RUSH: I was asked during the commercial break, ladies and gentlemen, why didn’t we just send the backup EIB plane to California. Had the mistake been discovered, say, over Dallas, it would have made economic sense, just go and fire up the backup plane to bring the luggage. But since it happened over Tampa, we’re mindful of economics on all this. And we always try to be efficient here with our costs. It made more sense to just go back to get the three — sorry — two bags, than to fire up EIB Two, because it would have a deadhead EIB Two back. We’re not like the president. We don’t take two airplanes everywhere we go with 15 cars and so forth and so on. We are responsible with our own money.