Tuesday, June 15, 2010

My Airline Pilot FAQ

Here's what I fly. Because people ask.

Also I'm answering some common questions.

No, I do not make tons of money. I do not have a regular route, like a paper route, although the money is probably similar. Unless you consider anywhere in Canada, Mexico, and the U.S. to be regular. Yes, I live in Houston but I'm based in Cleveland, OH.

I only know the days I'm going to work, and not necessarily where or when I'm going exactly.

No, we don't know what the United/Continental merger means. That's like asking someone who just went on a first date if they have their children's college fund set up. Too soon to tell.

Yep, it's a 'small' 'regional' (most of North America), but try gently hustling it down onto the runway on a Houston summer day. It's 40,000 lbs at around 140 miles an hour. And if you're not adjusting power, you're juggling the yoke around because it's inherently unstable. Most of the time, both. Don't forget to adjust for the crosswind. It helps if you can drive a 5 speed, talk on the phone, and eat something at the same time. Also, absorb and correlate the power setting, picture out the window, altitude, speed, etc etc. Don't bend anything.

No, I don't have to find and pay for my own hotel. It's not truck driving.

It's a crazy business.

Why do we do it then?

Because we're crazy, that's why.

(more questions and answers TBA)

Stories for Pilots

Some of these might get REALLY specific, like you'll only get them if you fly in a specific area of the country, or to a particular airport. Pardon the explanation.

Fly more, so you can get the joke. :)

1. World's Shortest Vector
We were direct ELA. ATC says: "Turn left 360 (90 degree turn), when you get to that heading, turn back direct ELA. Vectors for spacing."

2. Flying into IAH, we had just gotten vectors direct JEPNI. The CA says something like 'I guess we aren't getting 27 (runway) any more. Oh well.' I snap back and say "No, JEPNI." (Oh well is the phonetic pronunciation of a waypoint on one of the other approaches into IAH.)

3. Yetlink We're flying in Mexico, talking to their ATC. The CA checks off to talk to the pax, and says: "I'm off, you got one? (Comm radio 1)." Me: "I got Juan." (Get it? One/Juan?)
Google Find us on Google+ Website: www.circlephone.com