I noticed a cute sign above a urinal once, and I thought it would be a good idea to really make an official notification of it. This is to hang in men's restrooms, in plain sight of anyone using the urinal. You figure it out.


Type: AD (Urgent)
Effective: Immediately (10 July 1996, 0400Z)

Pilots will note the following permanent addendum:

(a) By order of the Administrator, pursuant to FAR §91.115 (water operations), all pilots-in-command of short-stack and/or low-manifold-pressure aircraft shall taxi per ATC instructions and clearances directly to the active runway hold-short line, in deference to, and with due consideration for, subsequent equipment and pilots neither float-equipped nor seaplane-rated.

(b) Pilots are hereby requested and required to completely drain any and all condensation from fuel tanks, due to the unnecessary environmental and safety hazards caused by leaking sumps. In severe cases, costly repair or replacement of malfunctioning equipment may be mandated at the discretion of the Administrator.

(c) Please be reminded that general cleanliness is an effective aid in the overall performance of airfoils, especially in (but not limited to) the production of lift; to this end, airports have been instructed to provide low-cost airframe sanitation and waste-disposal facilities, the use of which is strongly recommended to all pilots during post-flight operations.

(d) Pilots remembering to tie down their airplanes and close their flight plans prior to departing the airport will most effectively avoid potentially embarrassing personal comments from the non-aviation public.

(transmission ends)



A pilot went to a sex therapist. During the course of the conversation, the therapist asked him, "Now, how long has it been since you've had sex?" The pilot answered, "Oh, I remember it very well! It's been a while though…1957, I think." The therapist raised her eyebrows and remarked "Oh, really? That's very...interesting!", at which the pilot looked down at his watch and said, "Yeah, and it's already almost 2130!"



Thou shalt abstain from the intersection takeoff, for verily, the runway behind thee, as the altitude above thee, and the fuel which remaineth in the truck, cometh not to thine aid when thou needest them.

Lingerest thou not upon active runways, lest thou becomest like unto ground sirloin.

Ignorest thou not thy checklists, for many are the switches, handles, gauges, and other demons awaiting to take cruel vengeance upon thee.

Thou shalt cast thine eyes to thy right and also to thy left as thou passest through the firmament, lest thy fellow pilots bring flowers to thy widow and comfort her in other ways.

Buzzeth not, for this shall surely incur the wrath of thy neighbors, and the fury of the FAA shall be called down upon thy head.

Thou shalt be ever mindful of thy fuel, lest there be nothing in thy tanks to sustain thee upon the air, and thy days be made short.

Trustest thou not thine eyes to lead thee through the cloud, lest the archangel await thee therein.

Thou shalt not trespass into the thunderstorm, lest the tempest rend the wings from thy chariot and cast thee naked into the firmament.

Place not thy trust in weather prophets, for when the truth is not in them they shall not accompany thee amongst thine ancestors.

Oft shalt thou confirm thine airspeed on final, lest thy untimely reaction to the buffet cause the earth to rise up and smite thee.

The following quotes are from Richard Bach's wonderful book, Biplane. While he is so loaded down with sugar, I'm amazed his W&B isn't totally out of whack, he does know how to articulate the feelings. (You know the ones I mean.) Is he good or what?

I will learn, in time, of relative wind, of the boundary layer and of the thermal thicket at Mach Three. But now I do not know, and the wind is wind only, soft and cool. I wait by the airplane. I wait for a friend to come and teach me to fly.

An escape machine, this. Climb in the cockpit and move the levers and turn the valves and start the engine and lift from the grass into the great unchanging ocean of air and you are master of your own time.

For when he sees this, when the magnificence floods over an airplane and the man who guides it, there is no speaking. Enchanted in the high land, to mention of beauty and joy in the mundane surroundings of earth and city and wall and polite society is to feel gawkish and out of place. Even to his best beloved, a pilot cannot speak of the wonders of the sky.

As long as the pilot can believe in his fight, and battle on, the airplane will battle with him. When he believes his airplane has failed him, or will soon fail, he opens the door to disaster. If you don't trust an airplane, you can never be a pilot.

How is it possible, I wonder, for me to be so sure, so self-centered certain that I am in control? I do not know, but the fact remains that I am, when I fly.

A good question for the pilot, too. There can be the security of polished floors and velvet ropes for him. No need to be thundering about the countryside, to be tackling highly improbable odds, when he can be forever safe behind a desk. There is only one sacrifice to be made for that security. To be safe he has only to sacrifice living. In safety there are no fears to conquer, no obstacles to overcome, no wild screaming dangers stalking behind the fence of our mistakes. If we wish, velvet ropes, and a single word on the wall: "Silence."


A Flying students' diary...

Week 1

Monday: Rain
Tuesday: Rain
Wednesday: No rain; no visibility either
Thursday: Take instructor to lunch. Discover I don't know enough to take instructor to lunch.
Friday: Fly! Do first stall and second stall during same manoeuvre. Cover instructor with lunch.

Week 2

Monday: Learned not to scrape frost off Plexiglas with ice-scraper. Used big scratch as marker to set pitch.
Tuesday: Instructor wants me to stop calling throttle "THAT BIG KNOB THING." Also hates when I call instruments GADGETS"
Wednesday: Radios won't pick up radio stations, so I turned them off. Instructor seems to think I missed something.
Thursday: Learned 10 degree bank is not a steep turn. Did stall again today. Lost 2000 feet. Instructor said that was some kind of record -- my first compliment.
Friday: Did steep turn. Instructor said I was not ready for inverted flight yet.

Week 3

Monday: Instructor called in sick. New instructor told me to stop calling her "BABE". Did steep turns. She said I had to have permission for inverted flight.
Tuesday: Instructor back. He told me to stop calling him "BABE", too. He got mad when I pulled power back on takeoff because the engine was too loud.
Wednesday: Instructor said after the first 20 hours, most students have established a learning curve. He said there is a slight bend in mine. Aha--progress!
Thursday: Did stalls. Clean recovery. Instructor said I did good job. Also did turns around a point. Instructor warned me never to pick ex-fiancee's house as point again.
Friday: Did pattern work. Instructor said that if downwind, base and final formed a triangle, I would be perfect. More praise!

Week 4

Monday: First landing at a controlled field. Did fine until I told the captain in the 747 ahead of us on the taxiway to move his bird. Instructor says we'll have ground school all this week on radio procedures.
Tuesday: Asked instructor if everyone in his family had turned grey at such an early age. He smiled. We did takeoff stalls. He says I did just fine but to wait until we reached altitude next time. Three Niner Juliet will be out of the shop in three days when the new strut and tire arrive. Instructor says his back bothers him only a little.
Wednesday: Flew through clouds. I thought those radio towers were a lot lower. I'm sure my instructor is going grey.
Thursday: Left flaps down for entire flight. Instructor asked way. I told him I wanted the extra lift as a safety margin. More ground school.
Friday: Asked instructor when I could solo. I have never seen anyone actually laugh until they cried before.

Fellow pilots: Don't you think that a pretty cool trip to have in your logbook would be one operated between those two very special airports in the USA: Leadville, CO (the highest airport in the country, at over 9700'), and Death Valley, CA (the lowest, at -220')? It's just over 600 miles, so it'd be pretty easy to do, but can you imagine the weather and performance luck you'd have to have? That'd be neat!

Go here to read about funny things heard on airliners...

Original material © 1998-1999 Dan McGlaun