Aviation Chuckles
Courtesy of Bob Watts
Chief Pilot of KVMA's
Vinalhaven District


These gems come from the world of full-scale aviation, but some of them also fit very well in our scaled-down, fly-with-your-thumbs-while-standing-on-the-ground, world.
Truly superior pilots are those who use their superior judgment to avoid those situations where they might have to use their superior skills.

Rule one: No matter what else happens, fly the airplane.

Forget all that stuff about thrust and drag, lift and gravity; an airplane flies because of money.

It's better to be down here wishing you were up there, than up there wishing you were down here.

An airplane will probably fly a little bit over gross but it sure won't fly without fuel.

Believe your instruments.

Think ahead of your airplane.

I'd rather be lucky than good.

The propeller is just a big fan in the front of the plane to keep the pilot cool. Want proof? Make it stop; then watch the pilot break out into a sweat.

If you're ever faced with a forced landing at night, turn on the landing lights to see the landing area. If you don't like what you see, turn 'em back off.

A check ride ought to be like a skirt, short enough to be interesting but still be long enough to cover everything.

Speed is life, altitude is life insurance.

No one has ever collided with the sky.

Always remember you fly an airplane with your head, not your hands.

Never let an airplane take you somewhere your brain didn't get to five minutes earlier.

Don't drop the aircraft in order to fly the microphone.

An airplane flies because of a principle discovered by Bernoulli, not Marconi.

Cessna pilots are always found in the wreckage with their hand around the microphone.

If you push the stick forward, the houses get bigger, if you pull the stick back they get smaller.

Hovering is for pilots who love to fly but have no place to go.

The only time you have too much fuel is when you're on fire.

Flying is the second greatest thrill known to man; landing is the first!

Every one already knows the definition of a 'good' landing is one from which you can walk away. But very few know the definition of a 'great landing.' It's one after which you can use the airplane another time.

The probability of survival is equal to the angle of arrival.

IFR: I Follow Roads. (IFR&R: I follow Roads & Railroads.)

You know you've landed with the wheels up when it takes full power to taxi.

I had a fighter pilot's breakfast -- two aspirin, a cup of coffee and a puke.

Those who hoot with the owls by night, should not fly with the eagles by day.

A smooth touchdown in a simulator is as exciting as kissing your sister.

A helicopter is a collection of rotating parts going round and round and reciprocating parts going up and down -- all of them trying to become random in motion.

Helicopters can't really fly -- they're just so ugly that the earth immediately repels them.

Young man, was that a landing or were we shot down?

Learn from the mistakes of others. You won't live long enough to make all of them yourself.

Fighter Pilots believe in clean living. They never drink whiskey from a dirty glass.

Things which do you no good in aviation: Altitude above you. Runway behind you. Fuel in the truck. A navigator. Half a second ago. Approach plates in the car. The airspeed you don't have.

If God meant man to fly, He'd have given him more money.

What's the difference between God and Fighter Pilots? God doesn't think he's a Fighter Pilot.

Flying is not dangerous; crashing is dangerous.

Flying is the perfect vocation for a man who wants to feel like a boy, but not for one who still is.

There are four ways to fly: the right way, the wrong way, the company way and the captain's way. Only one counts.

A good simulator check ride is like successful surgery on a cadaver.

Asking what a pilot thinks about the FAA is like asking a fireplug what it thinks about dogs.

Trust your captain .... But keep your seat belt securely fastened.

An airplane may disappoint a good pilot, but it won't surprise him.

Any pilot who relies on a terminal forecast can be sold the Brooklyn Bridge. If he relies on winds-aloft reports he can be sold Niagara Falls.

The friendliest stewardesses are those on the trip home.

Good judgment comes from experience and experience comes from bad judgment.

Being an airline pilot would be great if you didn't have to go on all those trips.

Aviation is not so much a profession as it is a disease.

The nicer an airplane looks, the better it flies.

Why did God invent women when airplanes were so much fun?

Remember when sex was safe and flying was dangerous?

If it flies, floats, or fornicates; it's always cheaper to rent than to buy.

Renting airplanes is like renting sex: It's difficult to arrange on short notice on Saturday, the fun things always cost more, and someone's always looking at their watch.

There are three simple rules for making a smooth landing: Unfortunately, no one knows what they are.

It's a good landing if you can still get the doors open.

Passengers prefer old captains and young stewardesses.

The only thing worse than a captain who never flew as copilot is a copilot who once was a captain.

Be nice to your first officer, he may be your captain at your next airline.

Any Fighter Pilot who does not privately consider himself the best in the game is in the wrong game.

It's best to keep the pointed end going forward as much as possible.

If God had intended man to fly he would have given him enough money for a Bonanza.

If an earthquake suddenly opened a fissure in a runway that caused an accident, the NTSB would find a way to blame it on pilot error.

Any attempt to stretch fuel is guaranteed to increase headwind.

A thunderstorm is never as bad on the inside as it appears on the outside. It's worse.

Son, I was flying airplanes for a living when you were still in liquid form.

"Let's make a 360 and get the hell out of here!"

It's easy to make a small fortune in aviation. You start with a large fortune.

A male Fighter Pilot is a confused soul who talks about women when he's flying, and about flying when he's with a woman.

A fool and his money are soon flying more airplane than he can handle.

A thunderstorm is nature's way of saying, "Up yours."

Learning a little about flying is like leading a tiger by the tail -- the end does not justify his means.

The last thing every pilot does before leaving the aircraft after making a gear up landing is to put the gear selection lever in the 'down' position.

Remember, you're always a student in an airplane.

Keep looking around; there's always something you've missed.

Try to keep the number of your landings equal to the number of your takeoffs.

Takeoff's are optional. Landings are mandatory.

You cannot propel yourself forward by patting yourself on the back.

"No Guts, No Glory."

Guts will do for brains, but not consistently, and not for long.