Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Tweeting on a Jet Plane

This song might be really mean if it weren't so funny. Also I love the original, because I'm always leaving on a jet plane and not knowing when I'll be back again. (I wish there were an option to accept a cookie from airline websites such that when I visit the default ticket type is "one-way.")

I promise this is my last post about NW 188, unless something really startling come to light, like it turns out that the crew members they interviewed are really robots made with alien technology, and not the original pilots at all. Even if they are robots made with ordinary Earth technology. But it has to be at least that startling.

In response to this incident and Aluwings' post on the subject, I tried to keep track of what we did on my last flight to pass the time. Once we were clear of controlled airspace and had bade farewell to the local controller, we:

  • commented on how much nicer the weather was than last time we came this way
  • discussed the best sort of glasses frames for wearing with headsets
  • ate some snacks out of our respective flight bags
  • talked about the variation in stickiness of those stickers they put on apples
  • compared brands of energy bars/supplement bars/meal replacement bars
  • marvelled at the thinness of some of the clouds below us
  • performed fuel management tasks
  • waved our hands around to try and explain how we were getting a 40 knot tailwind when we were flying to the northwest of a low
  • took some pictures of the clouds
  • looked at the list of nearest airports about forty different times, some of which we then clicked on to see the names and frequencies
  • called flight services for altimeter settings and the latest destination weather (14,000 broken) and forecast (tempo three miles in snow broken 2000)
  • discussed an alternate plan should there be a snowstorm so fierce that we couldn't get in
  • turned on the windshield defroster just to make sure it worked (yes)
  • discussed the potential of the defroster as a hand-warmer (good)
  • climbed 2000'
  • pulled out the POH and looked up the single-engine performance ceiling for our weight, new altitude and outside air temperature
  • looked up the times in the journey log for a previous flight so we could laugh at how much faster this one was
  • tried to locate the source of a draught, but decided it was just air circulation from the cabin, so cranked up the rear heat
  • gratuitously adjusted some heating system sliders which the mechanic said weren't connected to anything that he could see
  • kept track of our position on the paper charts as well as in the GPS
  • looked up the names of lakes that we passed
  • looked up an aerodrome we overflew in the CFS to see who owned it

That's kind of the size of it. It doesn't seem boring when you're there. This song, however is going on my iPod.

5 comments:

Nicolas said...

Great song both the parody and the original. Cruise can get quite dull. Especially in a jet flying in the flight levels-the view just isn't as good from 30,000ft. i guess playing with the laptop just isn't the thing to do.

Echojuliet said...

the song is incredible.

It goes to show how much we "need" technology to keep us entertained. So what will it take to keep the latest crop of pilots focused on the job, instead of getting distracted by iphone applications? (I am waiting for the day when the iphone will be able to fly the airplane...)

Michael5000 said...

My favorite: "waved our hands around to try and explain how we were getting a 40 knot tailwind when we were flying to the northwest of a low."

I tried to explain the Coriolis Effect to somebody last month -- and succeeded! The kid's still got it....

Anonymous said...

Oh, I Love it :-) !

What will the flying public think when they climb aboard a computerized flight with no crew members! It's in our future. So what happens when there's a glitch?!? The ol'laptop faux pas may not seem so inappropriate at that moment.
I will be long retired by that time, busy navigating the golf course and sail boat. Something my current schedule just doesn't allow, let me rephrase that, not as much time as I would like.

Anonymous said...

"[G]ratuitously adjusted some heating system sliders which the mechanic said weren't connected to anything that he could see."

For some reason, the idea of doing that rather frightens me.

Verification word: madesc: the sort of pilot who twiddles sliders whose function nobody knows.