Archive for September, 2005


21 September 2005 at 9:02 pm
by Jonah

CBA or Christian Booksellers Association is a trade association for retailers for Christian products–books, music, gifts. CBA hired my dad in 1986, which brought our family to Colorado Springs from Georgia. He was the membership director there until we moved to Mobile in 1990 for his job at Integrity Music. I’ve been checking the websites of different companies and organizations here, especially ones that employ people I knew. CBA had one position open, an administrative assistant for the Communications & Marketing Department. Dad was leaving the very next day for a three-month stay in Singapore, but after a flurry of phone calls, I got a message from HR telling me to hurry and send my resume in because they were in the last stages of filling the position. Dad said that I would be working for the guy who replaced the guy (a good friend of the family who just moved to Pheonix last year) who replaced my dad.

Actual Fact: In 1992, roadside posters of Cindy Crawford had to be removed in Norway when authorities noticed a 300% increase in the accident rate as motorists were distracted by them

Job Search Status

21 September 2005 at 2:54 pm
by Jonah

I’ve got an interview at CBA tomorrow!

First hour dual given…

20 September 2005 at 6:10 pm
by Berck

I gave my first lesson today. My student was a glider instructor for the academy, so as my flight commander poitned out, “He has more dual given than you do.”

He’s almost done with the program, and flies well which is why they gave him to me. A hundred hours or so instructing in a glider helps.

It’s weird being called sir. Incessantly. The word “sir” showed up at least twice in every sentence. At one point I point I pointed an RJ that was crossing above us because it was a pretty cool view. “Very cool sir,” he said.

I took the controls only once while I had him put foggles on, otherwise he flew quite well. His landings weren’t perfect, but perfectly acceptable.

I was pretty nervous before the flight, and tried hard not to show it. After the flight, the other instructors congratulated me. And then picked me up and me off to the water tank to toss me in. The tank sits out there so that they can throw the cadets in after their first solo. I asked if they’d thrown any other instructors in after their first flight with a student. “No, but you’re the first instructor we’ve ever had with zero hours dual given!” After chucking me in the tank they complained that I didn’t put up much of a fight. I thought about it, but I was worried that I would end up with my head smacked into the pavement considering they had a heck of a time carrying me.

So now I’m an instructor. While I don’t have my flight suit yet, I’ve got my name badge now. It’s got wings, my name and, “INSTRUCTOR PILOT” printed on it. Woohoo.

Last week I did a very silly thing. I was preflighting my plane and had to walk two planes away to dump the fuel sample I got out of the tanks into a safety can on the ramp. When I resumed my preflight activities, the flight commander giving me the flight asked, “What are you doing?” “Uhm. The preflight checklist?” I responded. Then I realized that there was a cadet standing at the other end of the plane staring at me, and that it wasn’t my plane at all. I felt stupid, returned to my plane and didn’t think much about it.

Until yesterday when I passed my acceptance flight. White flight instructors all welcomed me aboard, and then proceeded to make fun of me about preflighting someone else’s plane. The guy whose plane I was preflighting said, “Hey, any time you want to preflight my plane for me…” My flight commander mentioned that he would considering concluding standup briefings with the words, “Berck, go preflight our planes!” And then they established a verb. “Bercking around” which apparently means doing some pointless activity. In any case, it all makes me feel rather welcome– it’s a all done in good fun, and I feel like I belong now.

I’m done! I passed!

19 September 2005 at 12:04 pm
by Berck

I’m a flight instructor now. Which means I have to get back to work. More later…

Hoping for the best…

16 September 2005 at 4:29 pm
by Berck

My flight commander printed my name up on a bunch of magnets for the big magnet scheduling board in white flight’s ops. After flying with me today, he’s optimistic that I’ll pass my acceptance ride on Monday and start working for him quickly. He’s in pretty desperate need of instructors, and plans to give me some lieutenants who are nearly complete because they’ll be easier. I can’t decide whether I’m more worried about the acceptance flight or my first ride with students.

One of the guys I’m working with quit today. He doesn’t like Embry-Riddle, and doesn’t like the Air Force. He really doesn’t like the reports of how poorly the instructors are treated, and like all of us, can’t stand the guy in charge of standards and new hire training. This is good for me, I think, because I’m quite willing to work, and they really need instructors.

I’ve got my profile for the flight Monday. I have to fly to an east area, flying either an East or Woodmen Departure depending on which runway is in use, and fly to an east practice area. Once there, I have to demonstrate power off stalls and a simulated forced landing. Then Jason will take the controls and pretend to be a student, and I have to explain what he’s doing wrong and teach him. After that, I have to fly the east arrival and perform a no flap landing.

The downside of the someone else quitting is that I’ll probably have to work 6 hour dispatch shifts most mornings. Which means waking up at 0430 to get there by 0530, in the dark, to open the place. Yay.

I got my first paycheck today. It looks like my minimum guaranteed salary will be more than Joanna was making, so that’s good at least. So now if she can just get a job, maybe we can work our way out of debt sometime before we die. We’re hoping she finds something she actually likes this time around.