Saturday, October 21, 2006

I went out last night with a friend of mine, a guy I used to work with a few years ago, and I got pretty toasted, so today I'm guzzling fruit juices and popping advil like M&Ms.

Why is beer math so screwed up? "Wow, I had 4 beer and I feel amazing, so logically I should feel twice as good if I have 8". Beware, it's trickery!

I haven't been hung over in a long, long time and I now remember why I don't get toasted in a regular basis.

Anyway, I was chatting with my pal last night at the pub, and as we have both worked in aviation for a number of years, the topic turned to flying and pilots and whatnot. My pal got out of aviation a few years ago, after owning his own flight training school and getting tired of the constant stress that it exerted in his life. He is now in construction and makes more money than he did as a pilot, but he said he's starting to feel the old familiar pull of the skies, and is thinking about returning to fly for a living.

I have held a few non-flying jobs and none of them has scratched my fundamental itch in the same way that flying has, so I understand what he's going through. How hooked are we that we seriously consider making a career of an industry that pays us poorly, keeps us away from our families, has us working longer hours than truck drivers, and has about a zillion environmental stresses associated with it. People with 'real' jobs can conceivably work for one or two employers for their entire professioncal lives, but when I talk to my buddies in flying world, most of us consider 3 years with the same employer as exceptionally long.

I could easily give up beer for the rest of my life and I wouldn't pine for it. But to make me feel fully alive, I need the smell of jet fuel, the soft hum of generators in the background of my headset, and a thousand miles to go before I sleep.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Book the massage, Sulako. Better than beer and a whole lot more effective with the "zillion environmental stresses."KM

Jamie said...

I feel your friend's pain. While I know that pursuing something else is the best ocurse of action for me right now, there are days when the itch for flying comes on strong and I just want to bolt out of property law class, head to the airport and fly anything.

forbin said...

Software developers and engineers have the same basic "sickness" as pilots. For example, my father-in-law was once shocked to see how many firms I had worked for. That same week, an interviewer noted I had stayed at each place about 3 years: "Good, you're a stable employee."