How I Became A Pilot


My wife, a former head flight attendant for TWA and then AA, asked me this riddle once:

What separates Flight Attendants from the Scum of the Earth?

Answer: The flight deck door.

Hey, don’t blast me! It’s my wife’s joke. :slight_smile:


Yes, we used to say GUAM was an acronym for “Going Under Any Minute”

Of course that’s not true…it’s an acronym for “Go UA Man!”…but that’s a different story. :wink:


In my 8 years there I only heard one: “Give Up And M*******te”

(Mind you I did not at all find that to be the case but maybe the acronym came from a time when there were fewer available women on the island.)


That’s the one I heard from older Navy types.


I’m enrolling in the ground school this week. 2 week late enrollment, so hopefully the instructor gives it the ok. Got tired of saying to myself, “when I have the money”.

So I took the leap.


Carpe Diem! Good luck Storm!


A good friend of mine is still a licensed instructor (former KC-135 driver). I need to ask him if we can work something out.


Good luck…! Keep at it as hard as you can and study the ground school stuff hard. The more work YOU do, the less work the INSTRUCTOR has to do…and that will save you both time and money.


Class starts this Thursday. Behind by two classes but I’m confident I can make that up. I understand flight controls already, as well as Bernoulli’s Principle.

Thanks all, for the encouragement.





Wee, it’s stagnant!


In my sector of the industry, pay is going to continue to increase as flight departments are forced to compete with the major airlines. We lost one pilot from our group to earlier this year to Delta. If I was a few years younger and could check the 4 year degree box, I would seriously be looking at making a transition to Part121 flying myself.


Did he bid the Mad Dog? Rumor has it upgrade time on that old girl is 1 year to captain…! Of course, they will all be gone in 3 years…but still. I think it’d be cool to fly that old classic for a couple years.


I believe he did Chris although I am not 100% sure on that.


I think I flew on one of these in the mid 90s during a trip to visit relatives in the US. I don’t remember it being particularly noisy or uncomfortable but I do have very vivid recollections of the terrible service provided by the cabin crew, every one of which were scowling. I once saw a comedy sketch where cabin crew were throwing the food trays at the passengers like Frisbees and it reminded me of that trip.


Up through the DC-9 30 series, they were really loved by pilots because it was relatively nimble and adequately powered. They referred to the -14 as a hotrod. At least the crews that I talked to. It was definitely noisey in the back third of the aircraft due to the engines being mounted on the fuselage. Of course smoking was allowed then too, so not only ears. but the lungs, nasal passages, and eyes of the smoking y class pax was under attack. At least the seat pitch was acceptable :slight_smile: Towards the front of the cabin it wasn’t too bad.


I can’t believe that headline is in Popular Mechanics! The MD-88 is a mechanical marvel. The series (DC-9) was the first to get rid of the flight engineer. It was the first to implement a useful FMA. And the cockpit is actually pretty comfortable. I taxi behind the things in awe as the flying stabilizers flop around all helter-skelter in the breeze. The airplane was designed, built and test flown by men who grew up reading PM and made something truly great in no small part because of the joy of mechanics they learned from that magazine. Shame!


I enjoyed watching this YouTube video giving a pilot’s perspective. It looks like a very neat airplane to fly.


The 2+3 cabin seating is pretty nice too…


I remember jumpseating regularly out of Charlotte on USAir DC-9s back when they did power backs from the gate! The FO was a whir pulling knobs and levers. As an Airbus guy, observing this with almost zero comprehension was like watching a Miyazaki character drive a blimp or run a bath house.