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Thread: Remember when?

  1. #1
    Seaworthy's Avatar
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    Remember when?

    FLYING - WHEN IT WAS A GREAT PROFESSION


    Those were the good ole days. Pilots all knew who Jimmy Doolittle was. Pilots chased women,drank coffee, whiskey, smoked cigars. And didn't say my ticket is on the line.

    They carried their own suitcases and brain bags like the real men that they were. Pilots didn't bend over into the crash position multiple times each day in front of the passengers at security so that so Gov't agent could probe for tweezers or fingernail clippers or too much toothpaste.

    Pilots did not go through the terminal impersonating a caddy pulling a bunch of golf clubs, computers, guitars, and feed bags full of tofu and granola on a sissy-trailer with no hat and granny glasses hanging on a pink string around their pencil neck while talking to their personal trainer on the cell phone!!!

    Being an Airline Captain was as good as being the King in a Mel Brooks movie. All the Stewardesses (aka. Flight Attendants) were young, attractive, single one's that were proud to be combatants in the sexual revolution. They didn't have to turn sideways, grease up and suck it in to get through the cockpit door. They would blush and say thank you when told that they looked good, instead of filing a sexual harassment claim. Junior Stewardesses shared a room and talked about men.... with no thoughts of substitution.

    Passengers wore nice clothes and were polite, they could speak AND understand English. They didn't speak gibberish or listen to loud rap on their Ipods. They bathed and didn't smell like a rotting pile of garbage in a jogging suit and flip-flops. Children didn't travel alone, commuting between trailer parks. There were no mongol hordes asking for a "mu-fuggin" seatbelt extension or a Scotch and grapefruit juice cocktail with a twist.

    If the Captain wanted to throw some offensive, ranting jerk off the airplane, it was done without any worries of a lawsuit or getting fired.

    Axial flow engines crackled with the sound of freedom and left an impressive black smoke trail like a locomotive burning soft coal. Jet fuel was cheap and once the throttles were pushed up they were left there, after all it was the jet age and the idea was to go fast (run like a lizard on a hardwood floor). Economy cruise was something in the performance book, but no one knew why or where it was. When the clacker went off no one got all tight and scared because Boeing and Convair built them out of iron, nothing was going to fall off and that sound had the satisfying effect on real pilots then as Viagra does now for those new age guys.

    There was very little plastic and no composites on the airplanes or the Stewardesses' pectoral regions. Airplanes and women had eye pleasing symmetrical curves, not a bunch of ugly vortex generators, ventral fins, winglets, flow diverters.

    Airlines were run by men like C.E. Woolman, C. R . Smith and Juan Trippe who had built their companies virtually from scratch, knew many of their employees by name and were lifetime airline employees themselves...not pseudo financiers and bean counters who flit from one occupation to another for a few bucks, a better parachute or a fancier title while fervently believing that they are a class of beings unto themselves.

    And so it was back then....and never will be again.
    Marine Corps Aviation since 1966

  2. #2
    Patrolman's Avatar
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    And I thought I was the only one old enough to remember that.

  3. #3

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    Remember when we flew DC3's on schedule runs into the Arctic IFR with nothing but an ADF and an Astro compass for nav aids and in the summer we would fly half the route in the 3 and then unload the passengers and all the freight and put it all in a PBY and continue the trip using only water for our landing strips?

    In those days pilots could actually fly different equipment with no thought about the need for pilot proficiency cards to prove we could actually fly those airplanes, instead of some cretin sitting in a government office grinding out more and more rules to allow us to fly our employer actually decided if we were safe by the simple method of insuring we actually knew what we were doing by allowing the chief pilot to decide who flew what.

    AAhh yes those days are long gone...but it must have been safe because some of us are still here.

  4. #4
    skywagon8a's Avatar
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    Ditto Amen
    N1PA

  5. #5

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    Well, Doolittle never swore (in public), chased women, smoked or cheated someone, but he sure did crash a lot of airplanes. Reading his autobiography now. Man, what a time to be a pilot (1920s).

  6. #6

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    but he sure did crash a lot of airplanes.
    Aviation has some real strange dichotomies on one hand we are taught to use good decision making skills and strive for 100% safety, on the other hand you are a hero if you can show a long history of smashing up airplanes and living through your adventures.

    Complete your career without smashing up airplanes and you just don't get the recognition the accident prone get.

    Go figure.

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