Rules to Fly By

These do the rounds on the internet from time to time.

  • Pilots are people who fly aircraft for other people who can’t fly. Passengers are people who say they fly, but really just ride
  • Fighter Pilots are steely-eyed, weapons systems managers who kill bad people and break things. However, they can also be very charming and personable
  • The average fighter pilot, despite sometimes having a swaggering exterior, is very much capable of such feelings as love, affection, intimacy and caring. (However, these feelings don’t involve anyone else.)
  • Flying is a hard way to earn an easy living
  • Both optimists and pessimists contribute to society. The optimist invents the aeroplane; the pessimist, the parachute
  • Death is just nature’s way of telling you to watch your airspeed
  • As a pilot only two bad things can happen to you (and one of them will):
    • One day you will walk out to the aircraft, knowing it is your last flight
    • One day you will walk out to the aircraft, not knowing it is your last flight
  • There are rules and there are laws:
    • The rules are made by men who think that they know how to fly your aircraft better than you
    • The laws (of physics) were ordained by God
    • You can and sometimes should suspend the rules, but you can never suspend the laws
  • About Rules:
    • The rules are a good place to hide if you don’t have a better idea and the talent to execute it
    • If you deviate from a rule, it must be a flawless performance (e.g., if you fly under a bridge, don’t hit the bridge.)
  • Before each flight, make sure that your bladder is empty and your fuel tanks are full
  • He who demands everything that his aircraft can give him is a pilot; he who demands one iota more is a fool
  • There are certain aircraft sounds that can only be heard at night and over the ocean. Most of them are scary
  • The aircraft limits are only there in case there is another flight by that particular aircraft. If subsequent flights do not appear likely, there are no limits
  • “If the Wright brothers were alive today, Wilbur would have to fire Orville to reduce costs.” (President, DELTA Airlines.)
  • In the Alaskan bush, I’d rather have a two-hour bladder and three hours of gas than vice versa
  • An old pilot is one who can remember when flying was dangerous and sex was safe
  • You have to make up your mind about growing up and becoming a pilot. You can’t do both

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