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   Vol. 13 No. 88  
Tuesday October 21, 2014

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True Confessions Richard Malkin     The ultimate in out-of-the-ordinary, air cargo think pieces return, as air cargo’s first and most honored journalist Richard Malkin launches a series of interviews with past and present air cargo industry leaders.
     “True Confessions” will bring the now 101-year-old grand master of air cargo journalism—the man who invented the form in 1942 and continued unabated until 2005—back to live reporting and advancing the thought processes behind 21st century air cargo.
     The series begins with Richard sharing for the first time how he began his legendary air cargo career and continues next issue with an in-depth interview with United Airlines Cargo President Jan Krems.
     Welcome back, Richard!

Foreword
   On April 11, 2005, in Istanbul, Richard Malkin—along with Ram Menen—was inducted into TIACA’s Hall of Fame. Following his acceptance address before an audience of worldwide air cargo executives, the presenter at the ceremony handed Dick two boxes of Cracker Jacks. The incident mystified the audience. But Dick, instantly recognizing the meaning of the act, broke into laughter.
   What was the silent message behind the Cracker Jacks? We asked Dick to take the wraps off the story, which, until now, was privy to only a small group of close friends. True Confessions is the result.

Geoffrey Arend

Richar Malkin and Adrienne Ames     To give you a clear idea of the time I am talking about, it was 1943 and the war was at its bloody height. I worked as a reporter for a daily newspaper, covering general news and local politics, wrote an occasional human interest story, and shared in the handling of the war news poured out by teletype.      My territory was along the western side of the Hudson River, from the New York–New Jersey border north to West Point. I was completely happy with my job—well, almost completely happy.      There was one bothersome issue: a salary afflicted with anemia.
     I had begun to think seriously of changing my job when I was caught up short by a brief ad in The New York Times Help Wanted column. The ad was made to order for my requirements. It read: “Editor monthly magazine, evenings only, write details.” I sat down and ground out a cautiously amplified letter of application.
     Two weeks passed, and I had given up hope of a response when I received a brief letter requesting me to call. I was supplied a name and phone number.
     I called the name, presumably the publisher’s secretary, and a luncheon appointment with Mr. John Budd was arranged for the following Thursday evening at a restaurant in lower Manhattan.
Barry Malkin     Before starting out, my wife kissed me on both cheeks and presented me with a shiny new penny as a good luck charm. Then she turned to our five-year-old son, Barry, (right) and asked him what he was giving Daddy for good luck. He was obviously unprepared for this and spent a while mentally going through his treasures. He solved his problem by removing from his T-shirt a tin airplane and pinned it on the lapel of my jacket. The plane had U.S. Air Force markings. It had come out of a box of Cracker Jacks. As I bent to kiss my son, I told myself not to forget to remove the toy before meeting Mr. Budd.
     I liked Mr. Budd from the outset. I judged him to be in the upper middle age, at ease with an unlit cigar in his mouth. He was open, friendly, and produced broad evidence of his origin through a healthy Brooklyn accent partially covered by slurred R’s. He stated candidly that he had interviewed two other candidates for the job, and I was the third and last.
     As he spoke, I was jolted by the sudden stinging realization that I had forgotten to remove that silly Cracker Jacks souvenir from my lapel. My instant thought was: What kind of a screwball am I interviewing? dominated his thinking. However, Mr. Budd gave no sign of having noticed my momentary anguish and produced a digest-sized magazine with an airplane on its front cover. A single line of type identified it as the world’s first air cargo magazine. The publisher removed his cigar and, as nearly as I can recall, the ensuing talk went something like this:
     “I’ll tell you straight out that I’m not an aviation fan,” he said. “My background in publishing involves surface transport, export, import. But I’ve been hooked by what the Air Force is doing carrying all kinds of freight over the Atlantic, over the Pacific, that I’m convinced there will be a commercial air cargo industry after this war ends. Just think of it—only the other day I heard of a narrow-gauge locomotive flown over the Hump to India. So I’ve invested a few dollars in a magazine that will be on tap when this goddamn war ends.”
     “I’m a journalist, a writer,” I said. “My only experience with air is a gift sent to a relative by air express.”
     “Let me be candid so that we don’t have difficulties afterward. At this point I want to keep my investment as small as possible. For starters, I want you evenings only. There will be press releases and other pieces of information to deal with. Harvey Rogers will be around to help you if you need some questions answered.”
     “The wage I agreed to accept is not exactly astronomical. How many hours do you expect me to put in each evening?”
     “I’ll leave that up to you. Basically, I want the press releases rewritten in fresh language. You will probably see the texts of speeches from various sources—aviation, trade associations, Chamber of Commerce, you name it. Some of these speeches can be edited with cleverly linked reference to a postwar era of distribution by air. Work hours per evening? Decide that for yourself. If you feel comfortable with the pace of your work, you may wish to skip an evening or two. All I demand is that you meet our deadline on time.”
     “I must confess that it seems so strange to someone who has never visited an airport.”
     “Face up to it. If you want to invest in your own future here, you might want to visit the airport on the evening you decide not to show up here, or maybe on your weekend.”
     I nodded, unsure that I agreed with that kind of arrangement. Mr. Budd could read my thoughts.
     “I’m not a wealthy man,” he said. “I’ve invested money in what I believe will happen pretty soon. Your investment is skill and honest effort. Most of all, I want the man I hire to edit my magazine to believe as I believe.”
     For the next fifteen or twenty minutes Mr. Budd discussed the war and a rousing air cargo prediction by Donald Douglas. After which he invited me to join him for dinner. I had a sudden feeling that my chances for winning the job had brightened with the invitation. Over dinner he provided a sharply clear description of the work of the freight forwarders and custom brokers about which my knowledge was zero. I plied him with many questions in order to prove my interest. At the end of the meal I thanked him, and he said I would be notified of his decision in a day or two..
     The following forenoon my wife received a phone call from Mr. Budd’s secretary, informing her that I had been selected for the job and to report to Harvey Rogers Monday evening.
     A new world had been opened for me, but look at it that way: a career in air cargo, even if it turned out to be gilt-edged, was allied to my innermost feelings. My yearning was elsewhere. I vowed to myself that I would stay on the job, give it my all-American try, then split once I was on firmer financial footing. I would not allow the circumstance of my undernourished bank balance to deter me. Which brought back memory of Disraeli pounded into me in British history class. Man, he said, was not the creature of circumstances. It was the other way around: circumstances are man’s creatures.
     Mr. Budd’s decision to place editorial management of a budding air cargo publication was, I felt, tantamount to the blind leading the lame. How, in heaven’s name, could I possibly master my boss’ requirements? Yet it happened.

Richard Malkin In The Picture


     Bit by urgent bit, the essential pieces came together and fell into reasonable place. The airlines’ press releases—primarily those from American, United, TWA, Eastern, and Pan American—told me little or nothing about shipping by air, but over time I became passably familiar with the traffic and operations sides of the business. In Harvey, I found a sympathetic ear. He went out of his way to arrange a meeting with a neighbor, a travel sales representative at Eastern, who had started his airline career with a brief stint in cargo. The man hated it from Day One, referred to the carrier’s small cargo department as a “dumping ground,” but he offered personal details on dealing with shipper customers.      I fared better on my occasional airport visits where I discovered a more buoyant spirit among the cargo representatives, although they conceded that their area of responsibility was popularly called “Siberia” by the glamorous travel sellers.
     The news that Douglas, Boeing, and Lockheed were planning to build high-capacity, high-performance all-cargo aircraft prompted me to dream up a set of questions, which were sent to the cargo executives of major domestic and international airlines. The response was so gratifying that I was encouraged to produce a different series of questions for traffic and physical distribution heads at the nation’s top corporations. The result was equally successful.
     By mail I developed a useful relationship with the military, resulting in a number of attractive byline stories. There were those infrequent evenings when Mr. Budd worked late, and this gave us the opportunity to talk. Almost in an offhand way, he painted an arresting picture of the international marketplace ten years hence. I doubted its validity, but it planted the seeds for an editorial under Mr. Budd’s byline (which both surprised and pleased him).
     About nine months into the evening job, my relations with the airlines (such as they were) underwent sudden dramatic change. Up to then, I had been totally on the receiving end of unsolicited publicity. An invisible line was crossed when TWA’s cargo manager offered to contribute an article discussing the relationship of air transport speed to inventory. It was mutually understood that the proposal did not involve payment since it came under the heading of public relations. I accepted the suggestion with professional formality and hidden glee.
     Importantly, the offer unlocked a mental gate that swung open. With the cooperation of airline public relations, why not propose a cargo-related topic or issue in fair exchange for a highlited image? The airlines—and eventually the aircraft and cargo equipment manufacturers and trade associations—became God-given cooperators. I was careful to insist that the primary thrust of each submission must be to enhance the reader’s knowledge and understanding of current business conditions, sales, traffic, and operations problems or marketing case histories. It was a temporary expedient, I knew, but it helped when I sorely needed it. I felt easier about my evening job and its unusual restrictions.
     These were the bits and pieces that somehow came together and enabled me to develop, step by step, a steadily improved product. This was not the sole effect. Over the months to the war’s end, and beyond, the evidence of the Air Force’s dazzling cargo-lift performance and the upsurge of “GI airlines” with war-surplus C-47s, and the mass reaction of the certificated airlines to possibilities in the freight business, gradually drew me away from my focused neutrality. Without, at first, awareness of the change, I morphed into a sort of believer—that is, I was willing to accept that Mr. Budd might have a point.
     Shortly after the Hiroshima horror and the subsequent Japanese surrender, Mr. Budd called me at home on a Saturday, a few minutes after breakfast. Could I meet him for brunch the next day? I had other tentative plans, but I detected a note of urgency in his voice. Yes, I said, I could make it if it didn’t take too long.
     We met at a Brooklyn restaurant an hour before noon, ordered sandwiches, and Mr. Budd lost no time in getting down to business.
     “I’ve decided to expand the magazine to standard size starting with the new year,” he said. “A minimum of forty pages per issue. It will be a daytime operation—office, editorial assistant, ad rep, the usual.”
     He plucked a cigar out of his shirt pocket, but he refrained from putting a match to it. As he spoke enthusiastically—perhaps even excitedly—about his vivid expectations, the cigar swung through the air like a conductor’s baton guiding the coda of a Rossini overture. I needed a couple of minutes to absorb the true meaning of what he was saying.
     “Does this mean that my job here is coming to an end?” I asked bluntly.
     “It means that I want you to work for me full time. It means that I’m asking you to quit you newspaper job and we’ll work our a fair salary.” He did not press for an immediate decision. “Think about it. Talk it over with your wife. But I need your decision no later than next week. Meet me next Sunday—same place, same time.”
     Although I was fond of my newspaper work, I recognized that my future there was limited. It was not difficult making the change.
     On Sunday, facing each other across a table in the restaurant, coffee cup halfway to his lips, Mr. Budd stared hard at me.
     “Well?”
     “I’m your man,” I said.
     He put his cup down, extended his hand, and said simply, “Congratulations.”
     We ordered meals, ate them mostly in silence, and then Mr. Budd leaned back in his seat, and produced a cigar which he rolled in one hand without attempting to light it. He spoke slowly, contemplatively:
     “There were three I interviewed for the job, and I chose you.”
     “Yes, obviously.”
     “There wasn’t a heck of a lot of difference among you, though they may have had a little more experience.”
     “I guessed that.”
     “However, I settled on you. I took the chance that you had positive ideas about aviation. Do you know why?”
     “I haven’t the faintest idea,” I confessed.
     “It was that airplane on your jacket that did it.”

Postscript
   Richard Malkin allowed his envisioned first choice of profession to lapse. At age 101, he is in his 71st year as an air cargo journalist.

   For More on Richard click here.
   malkin101@aircargonews.com

 

 

Get It On American

Joe ReedyYesterday was truly an historic day for American Airlines Cargo.
Our teams have worked long hours to ensure a smooth transition without impacting our ongoing business.
     I’ve never been more proud of our entire organization. We are ready to operate as one entity.

Impacts Business

     By combining our companies, we will have an extended global reach.
     Our customers have been telling me they look forward to a bigger network and a more robust product offering, including cool chain solutions.
     A key objective has been to manage through the complexities of integration while still running the day-to-day business.
     I’m pleased to say that we have actually grown our business and improved our service offerings throughout 2014.

Excitement

     We’ve been at this for a year and we are looking forward to seeing it become a reality. I’m happy to report that our customers are equally excited.



AFKLMP Winter Tails
   AF/KL/MP Cargo begins its winter schedule October 26th, with a strong focus on Main Deck uplift from the Americas and Asia.
   Both the west (Los Angeles-LAX) and east (New York-JFK) U.S. coast will be serviced daily out of Amsterdam Schiphol (SPL) with a B747-Combi.
   All in all, the offering is for no less than 20 weekly palletized flights to/from Los Angeles and 65 weekly palletized flights to/from New York.
   In addition to the five weekly B777 Freighter frequencies via Air France Cargo out of Paris-Charles de Gaulle (CDG), Martinair Cargo will operate a weekly MD11 Freighter flight to Chicago (ORD) from SPL.
   Air France in Winter 2014/15 will retain twice daily passenger service to Tokyo Haneda (HND) and its daily service to Tokyo Narita.
   KLM will add two extra B747 Combi frequencies to Tokyo Narita.


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IndiGo Makes HistoryIndigo Airlines   IndiGo Airlines Blockbuster… An A320 takes off from the Indira Gandhi International Airport in New Delhi, India, just as the news came last week that the budget airline signed on for 250 A320neo aircraft.
   Airbus said IndiGo is its single biggest airplane order in history.


 

FIATA Fights Ebola
Francesco Parisi and Turget Erkeskin Above—a session at FIATA 2014. Picture Right—at the official opening ceremony Turget Erkeskin, (right) President Utikad (Association of International Forwarding and Logistics Service Providers in Turkey) greets FIATA President Francesco Parisi (left).

   FIATA President Francesco Parisi puts it this way:
     “This remarkable and spontaneous concern and contribution just goes to highlight what quality the FIATA Membership has and what can be accomplished when we enthusiastically combine our strengths and generosity into the action of one determined body with good intentions.”
     At their annual shindig at Istanbul last week, FIATA raised $110,000USD to help fight the Ebola outbreak and pledged its worldwide resources at the service of the various international bodies taking action against the epidemic.
     Maybe it was the venue in beautiful Istanbul, a locale with an undeniably big heart, but we think everyone in transportation can learn from FIATA’s grand gesture.
     The amazing, on-the–spot fundraising demonstrates freight forwarders’ deep concern and willingness to drop all pretense and move to stem this terrible disease.
     Monies are earmarked for Red Cross/Red Crescent and Medecines Sans Frontieres in equal portions.
     Bravo, FIATA!

Air Cargo News For August 25, 2014
Ebola Lightbox

 

Airlines & Forwarder Harvest Home

     Apropos of this harvest time of year, when crops and provisions and thoughts turn to the long, cold winter ahead, Delta Cargo rolled up its collective sleeves and helped build a “Harvest Home.” Part of a Habitat for Humanity build effort in Seattle, Washington, the project was completed just last Friday.
     “The experience was even sweeter,” reports Delta Cargo VP Cargo Commercial Ray Curtis, “as freight forwarder representatives from the Airforwarders Association joined our team in the effort for a special build day as part of Delta’s ongoing Habitat for Humanity project in Seattle.”
     The Seattle event marks Delta’s 200th Habitat for Humanity build and is part of the fall volunteer program with Habitat in six cities.
     More than 2,300 employees from all parts of Delta Airlines are participating in projects in some of Delta’s hubs and key cities, including Atlanta, Detroit, Los Angeles, Minneapolis/St. Paul, New York City, and Seattle.
     Several board members and executives from AfA and Delta Cargo leaders supported the project, which is restoring a home for a family of four.
     The hands-on effort included concrete pouring, interior and exterior painting, and staining a fence.
     Brandon Fried, AfA’s executive director, noted:
     “We in the freight forwarder community are proud to be able to roll up our sleeves and join in this effort.”
     “Cargo was thrilled to invite our AfA partners to participate in Delta’s 200th Habitat for Humanity build, a milestone in our long-standing relationship with Habitat,” Ray Curtis said.

 

Chuckles For October 21, 2014

 

If You Missed Any Of The Previous 3 Issues Of FlyingTypers
Access complete issue by clicking on issue icon or
Access specific articles by clicking on article title

FT101114
VOL 13 No. 85
TIACA Faces Bleak Winter
Chuckles For October 10, 2014
In The Picture
FT101514
Vol. 13 No. 86
FIATA Forwards Istanbul Week
High Times At Lufthansa Cargo
ATC Is Unbeatable
Chuckles For October 15, 2014
What Makes EMO Trans Atlanta Run
Why Bing Still Matters

Publisher-Geoffrey Arend Managing Editor-Flossie Arend Associate Publisher/European Bureau Chief-Ted Braun
Film Editor-Ralph Arend Special Assignments-Sabiha Arend, Emily Arend Advertising Sales-Judy Miller

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