I know, this one isn’t very aviation related. But is it? Working in aviation I have dealt with rats more than I ever thought I would nor cared to deal with. Had them in the hangar, in the plane, in the parts room (where the idea may or may not have come from … strongly leaning towards “may”), inside construction trailer we worked out of, at the helibase, and so forth. You get my drift.
What came first? The hangar or the rat?
Where have you found rats so far?
Anyway, we had a lot of fun making this strip. The line that Julio got for the first panel and Chuck for the last one had us giggling the whole time writing and drawing this. Enjoy!
In a certain way, being a parent is a bit like being in an army bootcamp. I don’t mean just the fact that you don’t get enough sleep, but also that it is such an all-consuming task that it’s nearly impossible to be able to talk about anything else. I try my best to avoid the topic with strangers, because I know how much other people’s kids interested me before I became a dad. But anyway, looking at the first panel of today’s strip, I can’t help but make a connection to the subject of “stuff on the floor.”
There always, always is stuff on the floor. Crumbs, for instance. Or spit. The days where I was appalled or confused when I stepped in something wet are long gone. And toys, of course. We don’t even buy that many toys, but somehow they seem to accumulate to ridiculous amounts almost by themselves. I estimate that half of the world’s oil production ends up as plastic toys in the living and kids rooms across the globe. And no matter how much you try to organize and clean up, the natural habitat for a toy is the floor. So I really sympathize with Julio here!
Being a flight instructor is a rather interesting job. You meet great people. They pay you to fly with them. You share the same passion, and often you find yourself hanging out with them after work or just bumming about the airport with them. You spend countless hours with them working towards the same goal. Yet … for some completely unexplainable reason … they randomly try to kill you every few hours. Why is that?
One thing is for sure, you can never let your guard down. I got in more trouble with more advanced students who I really like for that very reason. Any CFI’s in here have had similar experiences?
Let’s hear them!
Unlike Chuck or the majority of the working population, I don’t have to show up at work at any particular time. Ah, the joys of being self-employed! On the other hand, if I start working late, the workload stays the same, so I only end up working later or pushing stuff along to the next days or weeks. The fact that I have a hard time fitting my to-do-list on an A4 sized piece of paper seems to indicate that I should start working earlier more often.
In principle, some things are just as much fun when you’re six years old as when you’re 60. And I think popping bubble wrap is definitely on that list. The only difference is, that, as a kid, you don’t have as easy access to bubble wrap as when you’re an adult, but on the other hand more time if you do. Nowadays, I am usually busy packing or unpacking something and rarely find the time for a few pops. Unless it’s bubble wrap with particularly large or tiny bubbles. You need to appreciate those. Anyway, I can totally understand Chuck in the last panel!
I don’t own a plane, but I do own a house. Well, technically, I own [(the house – the open mortgage) / 2], but although the difference to how I treated my rented apartments to how I treat my house is noticeable, it is not huge. I was always an exemplary renter and treated the apartment with respect. Not just because I wanted my deposit back, but because I’m a stickler for efficiency and hate waste. I don’t just disklike wasting my own time, money and energy, I also dislike wasting other peoples resources. Ask me how I feel about our taxes and public spending, haha!
Anyway, I do admit that I am thinking way more long term and financially calculating when it comes to my own property. And of course, I end up doing way more work myself!
Those of you who are old enough will probably remember a time before Google, when there was a plethora of competing search engines such as Yahoo, AltaVista, Infoseek, Netscape search etc. One of those search engines was called “Ask Jeeves”. It was the first time I came across the name of Jeeves, and I thought it was a really stupid name for a search engine. It was many years later that I stumbled across the writings of P.G. Wodehouse and his stories about Bernie Wooster and his butler Jeeves, and I enjoyed them so much, that I think I read about every Wodehouse book multiple times. Next to Terry Pratchett, he’s my favorite humorous author!
The only drawback for a non-native speaker is that I tend to unconsciously incorporate the language that I consume into my personal repertoire. When you use a phrase an early-20th century butler would use in normal conversation, it does not always help the conversation.
By the way! I hope nobody will take offense in the word “poppycock”. It is a perfectly acceptable English word, which (according to Merriam-Webster) apparently derived from the Dutch dialect word “pappekak”, which means “soft dung”. So it’s rather close to the American “BS”. I only mention this, because one of our (probably former) readers once got upset with us for using the word “dumbass” and accused us of using foul language. Even though the word refers to the donkey, not the body part, and is probably acceptable in children books and movies.
That’s a whole new tangent I could go off on. You wouldn’t believe some of the critical feedback we (fortunately only) occasionally get. One day we’ll compile a list and make an extra page about it, we promise!
I feel with Chuck. Although in my case, I’m mostly allergic to dogs, cats and dust mites and a bit allergic to a few plants. Since there are no dogs or cats in my personal environment, and my other allergies (e.g. poplar trees) are rather mild, my life is almost completely unaffected. The only thing that bothers me is my dust mite allergy. After cleaning my office, for example, I sometimes have a hard time breathing when I’m lying in bed at night. After going to an allergy test, I even have a written recommendation from my doctor that “dusting should be done by third persons”, which I like to quote to my wife. Who likes to respond she’s no third person, she’s my wife.
Anyway, that’s why I’m a comic artist and don’t work as a cleaner.
I love flying Skycranes! They are not a comfortable helicopter to fly in by any means nor do they go far or fast, but boy can they pick up a lot of weight! It’s nice to watch the fire go out when you drop that much water on it per shot. As far as aerial firefighting goes and when utilized properly as a fast moving “initial attack” tool around urban interface, the Crane is absolutely the best helicopter for the job I have ever flown. It works really well here in Greece with the added ability of picking up salt water from the sea.
But now, after almost 3 months on the road, I am happy that today is my last work day I am getting a few day break away from the orange beast. I thought it would be appropriate to post a comic about Cranes to celebrate the occasion.
Orange is actually not the best color for flying around in the smoke I have found btw. We always get all kinds of questions about this helicopter. And most of the time, people even let us finish our sentences, LOL. I’m sure you guys all have met somebody who bombards you with questions without listening to the answers. We also have the guys who come up to us with a question and then proceed to dazzle us with how much THEY know about the machine 😉
Let’s open the blog section for Crane relate questions y’all might have. I’d be happy to answer them.
Look it up! It’s a thing! It’s actually a big thing we are facing all the time in the industry. Time zone changes, red-eye flights, maintenance delays, the list is long. Even with many breaks in place it is almost unavoidable because the nature of the business. I can mainly speak for the helicopter industry of course given my extensive background there vs airline flying. August is pretty much the toughest month in my business with the long days and the high fire danger. Hot windy conditions and utility aircraft without air-conditioning aren’t helping either. Now combine that with the typical Type A personality and our “Can be done” attitude and we are setting ourselves up for trouble. Who of you in here flying for a living can honestly say they have never been there or allowed themselves to push the limits every now and then?
Not me, I can tell you for a fact.
But the FAA is starting to look into exactly what is happening to Chuck here. They are finding out that a lot of us are not using their rest time properly. Instead of going to bed, reading a few pages out of a novel and then sleep, we are getting carried away playing around on social media half the night.
I wouldn’t be surprised if there will be regulations on this sort of thing sooner or later once the first big accident can be directly linked to a gaming, social media, or a Pokemon Go addiction …