Wednesday, March 2, 2011

A Day With Captain Personality

I've blogged a great deal about my job as a pilot, and the many characters I'm forced to endure in the tight enclosure called the cockpit (also known as the box office, but only with an all female crew.)  The latest was a guy possessing the ability to enhance the mundane in the already boring.

What I've never done is detail a typical day in the life.  That's difficult, because no days are typical.  I could be gone for days at a time, beginning in one hotel and ending in another.  I might only fly one leg and have the rest of the day to myself.  Or, as was the case this past Monday...

7:30 - Wake up.  Feel Mrs. Sarcasm's belly for baby movement.  Nothing.  This kid likes to shy away from me.

7:30 - 8:00 - Enjoy a bowl of Apple Jack's and Charlie Sheen's morning show meltdown.

8:30 - Mrs. Sarcasm leaves for work.  I promise to call the drug company to straighten out a billing issue and deposit a check into savings at the ATM  At least I think she said savings.

8:45 - Retrieve floor steamer from attic. (Tile floors have silicone streaks thanks to runaway grout sealer.)

9:10 - Determine steamer isn't getting the job done.

9:15 - 9:25 - Research cleaning solutions.

9:25 - Discover solution.  Determine it to be more labor intensive than time allotted.

9:30 - Watch Smallville on TiVo.

10:20 - Curse Smallville producers for wasting one of the final episodes in a rip-off of The Hangover.  Watch The Big Bang Theory.  Applaud brilliant ending.

10:40 - Shower

10:50 - Remember promise to call drug company.  Call drug company.

11:00 - Lunch

11:15 - End call with drug company.

11:20 - Leave for work.

11:30 - Stop at ATM.  Deposit check into checking.  Remember it was supposed go to savings.

11:31 - Transfer funds.  Pat myself on the back for getting it right.

12:00 - Arrive at airport.

12:20 - Arrive a plane.  Scheduled departure is 13:00.  No captain in sight.  Begin preflight checks.

12:40 - Complete preflight checks.  Still no captain.  Consider calling Crew Scheduling.

12:45 - Boarding complete.  Captain arrives.  No explanation.  No apology.  No nice to see you.  States that this will be his leg to fly the plane.  Seems to have forgotten his personality.

12:50 - Depart gate.  Captain follows bizarre taxi route to the runway.

12:56 - Arrive at runway.  Captain complains of the long line for takeoff.  Says it looks like we'll be waiting a while.  I mutter that some of us have already been waiting a while.

13:12 - Takeoff.

13:25 - Captain tells me I look like this one actor, but can't remember who.  I ask what he's been in.  He says Fargo.  I shake my head in disappointment.  People used to tell me I looked like Tom Cruise.

Faster than you can jump off a couch I've gone from this...
To this.

14:00 - Captain tells me my shoes are in violation of company policy.  Pulls out manual and opens to the page on footwear, which, for some reason, he has bookmarked.  I tell him he can report me when we get to Boston and I'll get off the trip.  He decides my shoes are okay.  (because they are.)

14:15 - Captain stinks up the cockpit with a can of Tuna.

14:16 - Captain chokes on tuna.  Spends next twenty minutes coughing.

14:45 - I take a bathroom break so I can get away from the tuna smell and the coughing.  Get a lemonade and some M&M's.

14:50- Still choking.

(At 15:00 I did something I'm not going to write about, lest the FAA figures out who I am.  When finished, I was caught up on the previous day's events.)

15:58 - After approaching too high and too fast, captain lands in Boston.

16:02 - Arrive at gate.

16:03 - Captain discovers cockroach in his flight bag.  Declares it is pregnant and freaks out.  Bristles at the suggestion he brought it from home.

16:04 - Captain leaves, announcing he'll be back "later."

16:05 - Begin preflight.

16:20 - Call home.  Find out deposit was supposed to go into checking.

16:40 - Captain returns.  Announces he stuffed his face with Japanese food and two ice cream cones.

16:42 - Decides he must check my work for accuracy.  I let him know it was not only accurate, but done on time.

16:58 - Leave gate.  He turns the wrong way and screws up the flow of airport ground traffic.

17:08 - My leg.  Flawless takeoff.

17:50 - Captain begins crossword puzzle.

18:25 - Captain begins nap.

20:08 - I execute near perfect landing.  Told our gate is occupied.  Expect 40 minute wait.  Shut down engines.

20:40 - Still waiting.  Try Family Feud demo on new phone.  Won't load.  Try Sims Demo.  Sim won't go where I want him to.

21:07 - Arrive at gate.  Shut down plane.

21:50 - Arrive home.  Listen to baby's heartbeat.  Still not kicking for me.

22:00 - Eat meatballs and mashed potatoes much later than I prefer.  Finally watch last week's The Office and Parks and Recreation.

23:00 - Nighty-night.


Lt. Cccyxx said...

Great guy, that Captain. Hope you don't have to deal with him every day!

Holly Ruggiero said...

Such a charmer. I bet you can’t wait to fly with him again.

Diana said...

too bad there wasn't something in the manual about bringing tuna for lunch. that's the worst.

new follower from crusade. *waves*

Jeanne said...

Well, I liked that post. Cute, funny and just full of meaning, some hidden, some not.I like hearing about your pilot life because it is something us civilians don't get to see, or hear, etc. What goes on behind those locked doors....

Tara Tyler said...

I loved it. I'm forwarding it to my old neighbor (pilot for D)

but have to say:
"(also known as the box office, but only with an all female crew.)"

Susanna Leonard Hill said...

Thanks for the laugh :)

Travener said...

Funny. Also a good example of why I won't fly anymore.

Did I read this joke on your blog:

Q. What's the difference between a pizza and an airline pilot?

A. A pizza can feed a family of four.

Where do they find guys like your captain?

MC Howe said...

Lt. & Holly - Pretty sure I'd flown with that guy at least once before. He's one of the reasons there is a no-fly list among First Officers.

Diana - Tuna is the worst. It's the reason my kids will learn to retch when they don't like something.

Jeanne - Ah the locked door. The best part of the job.

Tara - A lady pilot told me that joke.

Susannah - You're welcome.

Travener - Not my joke, but how do you like this one?

Did you hear about the new high tech airplane? It just requires a dog and a pilot. The pilot's there to feed the dog. The dog's there to bite the pilot if he tries to touch anything.

Stacey Graham said...

Awesome. I'm now going to picture all (male) pilots as the guy from Con Air who wore a head for a hat.

I'm definitely going to need more peanuts when I board.

Theresa Milstein said...

Nice to meet you, fellow crusader. I'm sure being a pilot doesn't give you a typical day very often!

Gina Blechman said...

Sounds like a fun day. (note sarcasm...just for you!) After all that, the baby should certainly muster up the respect to kick for you. :-P

<3 Gina Blechman

Michael Offutt said...

Poor Steve Buschemi. He gets no respect. If only he was born looking like Tom Cruise. He definitely has more talent than Cruise imo.