Men with wings…
I recently was told my a family member that my last blog ( ” a bad trip”), seemed critical and negative towards my pilots…now , seeing how my family at times have been my worst critics, I really didn’t pay much attention to the comment. However, I do want it known publicly that I was not slamming them for being young and scared.. They were. It’s a fact. And there is nothing wrong with that. I was extremely scared myself..And it comes with the territory of my job that sometimes we are in scary circumstances, ie. Bad turbulence , mechanical issues, illness of passengers, etc.. So, As an american and a blogger, I Am going to express my freedom of speech and write about it.
Having said that, here is more of my thoughts on pilots.
So far, in my 11 years of being a flight attendant, I have flown with the very best and the very worst. some have become great friends of mine, while others, well, I do my best to avoid.
So, What do I consider a great pilot?
Someone who I feel safe with- Their experience, intelligence, and demeanor give me a sense of comfort.
Someone who recognizes how hard my job is, and appreciates my hard work. And even tells me from time to time, ” you did a great job, thanks”.
Someone who believes in being a team player and knows the value of forming a crew bond at work.
And, someone who is well balanced- takes their job seriously, and their responsibility to the plane, passengers and crew members. .. And at the end of the day, is still real, down to earth, and can make a joke or laugh at mine..
What do consider a “bad pilot”? The following..
A person who is the opposite of the above. And in addition, the shovenists, alcoholics, and skirt chasers are the ones I avoid. ( and yes I realize these people do exist in every occupation),
I also have a problem with unhelpful pilots. Ones that pass me on the cabin stairs when i am holding my weight in bags and don’t offer to help. Yes, it is my job to take care of catering and organize the plane and galley, , but shivery should not be dead…And again, I do fly with those wonderful guys that not only help me carry catering bags, but also my shoe shopping bags 😉
From my observations, there are significant differences between commercial pilots and corporate pilots. Most older commercial guys Are more ,militant. This is probably due to the fact that most, especially older ones, got their training in the military. The are a little more anal retentive and controlling on the plane. I remember a flight right after 911 when a during Preflight crew meeting, the pilot said – ” ok, if we have a terrorist attack, I am gonna use the plane as a weapon.. I will drop altitude real fast and slam on the breaks. We may even do an inversion”.. I stared at him in shock and asked ” won’t that injure all of us?”.. His response was , ” first of all, we are trying to avoid a take over in the cockpit and and second of all, who is the captain, you or me!”. Its been ten years and I can still quote that guy word for word..
commercial pilots also seem to be more arrogant. They prance through the airport like they own the place.. And of course keep that left hand in their pocket ( to hide the wedding ring? ).. And please, observe for yourself then return to my blog site and comment.
Private/ corporate pilots are, for the most part more layed back. Maybe it’s because they just rested on the beach in Maui for a week, or golfed up a storm in Miami on their last trip. Or maybe it’s because the FAA doesn’t breathe down their necks as hard.
Cargo pilots, such as fed-ex or UPS, in my opinion, have it made. Their “passengers” don’t complain, dont run late, and don’t change their minds on their destination. However, They do work more challenging hours sometimes with trans Atlantic night flights and short layovers. I guess everything is a trade off.
But, the biggest similarities of all pilots is simple- they all worked hard for their wings, paid a lot for their training, and probably thank God everyday that they have a job.
Finally…NO, I have never dated a pilot.. For some reason everyone thinks that flight attendants want to date pilots and vice versa. I don’t really think this is the case. There are some exceptions but for the most part I have heard from many pilots in the corporate world, that they prefer not to date flight attendants.. It’s complicated when you work together and if you don’t, you never see them. The only upside I see is that they can relate to your crazy lifestyle, ie your lack of schedule, working holidays, and breaking plans. Otherwise, I prefer to date “non winged” men..I mean, that gender is ” flighty enough”, challenging in so many ways to understand, i don’t need to deal with the extra “baggage” ( no pun intended)..