Crusing Altitudes. For an older dude he still seems to have a working mind. Trust me, where I live, that's more than a compliment. Just kidding DL. (Not about the compliment, about your mind. But then, you would have figured that out, wouldn't you? I mean, because...well...)
Apparently I'm supposed to reveal ten things about myself. I'm quite unprepared. I didn't expect to win anything. Which reminds me of....
- My first year in college I hosted a talk show on the campus TV channel. One day whilst working in the D'Jay booth at the radio station, a couple of my classmates stumbled by on their way to the Broadcast and Cinematic Arts Awards ceremony. Quite certain no such awards existed, it barely registered when they told me they had voted for me for Best New Television Personality. The next day I found out I won.
- A year later I was the first person to ever have a campus TV show canceled. I like to think I still hold that distinction.
- You know that guy in the office that's such a kiss up everybody hates him except the boss? Think Dwight on The Office. Only I like to refer to him as Gareth, from the British The Office. One day I went to a rival airline's job fair. Gareth sat in the parking lot taking names.
I got fired. I now have a better job. One day, Gareth is going to need a ride on my jumpseat. That will be the greatest day in my aviation career.
- I was a terrible hitter in Little League. The first time I faced a real pitcher, he hit me in the head. I was ten. After that I was always afraid of the ball. Despite this fear, and the fact I use to repeat over and over, "Please don't hit it to me. Please don't hit it to me," I was an excellent shortstop. I even made the all-star team in the 12 - 13 year-old-league.
- Looking back, every thirteen-year-old made that all-star team.
- Damn it!
- Sometimes, when I know I'm smarter than them, I'll screw with my captains at work. Sadly, the only time anyone will ever hear it is if I crash and the cockpit voice recorder is released. So here's a for instance. In the early years after 9/11, pilots needed a code word when flying into Washington National Airport. The captain would call our dispatcher on the phone, relay it to me and I would write it down. If the word was horse, I wrote hoarse. One particular captain freaked out. He was none too happy when I made him sound it out.
- Sometimes my best ideas come to me in the middle of the night. A lot of good ideas have been lost because I'm too lazy to get out of bed to write them down.
- Excited to get my first record album, I had a gift certificate, but still needed to pay sales tax. I begged my uncle, who'd driven me to the record store, for thirty cents. He relented, not realizing it was for Culture Club's Color By Numbers. Twenty-seven years later, he's still disappointed. So am I.
- I'm no Johnny Weir, but I do enjoy making people uncomfortable. I'm in such a macho profession, I can't help myself. The other day, the captain offered some strange looking chips to me and the jumpseat rider. There was enough garlic in one chip the entire Twilight Series would have burst into flame from my breath. When the flight attendant called to see if we were awake, I told her I needed a Coke and some M&Ms (that's right, I get M&Ms at work). I told her I had a strange and exotic taste in my mouth that needed to be washed away. Awkward silence lingered among nervous glances between the other two pilots for the rest of the flight. I crack myself up.
That's all I got. I have to fly to San Juan in the morning. At least it's not snowing there. I'll be thinking of you when I'm on the beach.