14 March 2010


The language of flight contains an abundance of two components: acronyms and aphorisms. The latter express sound advice or penetrating observation, usually with dry wit. Today's post is devoted to a few of my favorites, garnered with gratitude from Slipping The Surly Bonds, by Dave English ~~

~~ Fly it until the last piece stops moving.

~~ If you're ever faced with a forced landing at night, turn on the landing lights to see the landing area. If you don't like what you see, turn 'em back off.

~~ Experience is the knowledge that enables you to recognize a mistake when you make it again.

~~ Flying is the second greatest thrill known to man ..... landing is the first !

~~ Flying is like sex -- I've never had all I wanted but occasionally I've had all I could stand.

~~ There are old pilots, and there are bold pilots, but there are no old, bold pilots.

~~ You know you've landed with the wheels up when it takes full power to taxi.

~~ Experience is a hard teacher. First comes the test, then comes the lesson.

~~ Helicopters don't fly. They beat the air into submission.

~~ Please don't tell Mum I'm a pilot. She thinks I play piano in a whorehouse.

~~ Flying is not dangerous. Crashing is dangerous.

~~ Aerobatics -- it's like having sex and being in a car crash at the same time.

~~ It's a good landing if you can still get the doors open.

~~ You can only tie the record for flying low.

~~ If at first you don't succeed, well, so much for skydiving.

~~ I want to die like my grandfather did, peacefully in his sleep. Not screaming in terror like his passengers.

~~ The worst day of flying still beats the best day of real work.

~~ It's better to die than to look bad, but it's possible to do both.

~~ Any attempt to stretch fuel is guaranteed to increase headwinds.

~~ A thunderstorm is never as bad on the inside as it appears on the outside. It's worse.

~~ Son, I was flying airplanes when you were still in liquid form.

~~ Eagles may soar, but weasels never get sucked into jet air intakes.

~~ It's easy to make a small fortune in aviation. You start with a large fortune.

~~ When the last Blackhawk helicopter goes to the boneyard, it will be on a sling under a Huey.

~~ Takeoffs are optional. Landings are mandatory.

~~ If you must make a mistake, make it a new one.

~~ The nice thing about a mistake is the pleasure it gives others.

~~ Things which do you no good in aviation --
  • Altitude above you.

  • Runway behind you.

  • Fuel in the truck.

  • The airspeed you don't have.

  • Half a second ago.

~~ "If you don't get in that plane you'll regret it. Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but soon, and for the rest of your life." Rick Blaine, in the movie Casablanca, 1942

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