Plenty of operators out there that treat their low-time pilots well and have a real safety culture. Trouble is most of them are flight schools, and as I recall that was something you wanted no part of.
I was delightfully surprised when the chief pilot interviewing me said that he too was not a CFi. Proves that you can make it without being a teacher or ex-military pilot,...you just have to find the right place!
Butters, Profile of a Quitter,...
Just finished my second set of pushups and got to thinking, what kind of guy is butters? I mean I just did 105 pushups, that's a pretty good accomplishment for a quitter with a bad attitude?
I was a delivery boy for Fedex a couple years ago. One day just a couple months into the job, it rained like a mutherf*cker all day long. About ten minutes in I realized my gortex rain suit wasn't working anymore and I was soaked all the way through to my underwear! Then about twenty minutes later my scanner stopped working and I ended up sitting around for a half hour waiting for my manager to bring me another one. Did I want to quit, Hell yes, did I, no! Not only did I spend the rest of that day delivering boxes with soaking wet skivies, but that night I bought a new rain suit and kept that job for another ten months! Again, not bad for a quitter with a bad attitude!
During my Private training I struggled with hovering for what seemed like an eternity. Frustrated to no end I wanted to quit more times than I can remember, but I didn't. Eventually I became a pilot and in the fourteen years since then I have never once let my currency slip!
Even my job search. It took ten years because I kept looking!
Somewhere in those ten years I seemed to lose the desire to be a career pilot, but I kept trying to get work as one. Even during that last interview with freddy I didn't want him to offer me the job,...well I did and I didn't I guess? I didn't because deep down I knew I no longer wanted this, I did because I needed an end to this unbelievably long job search (I didn't want to quit until I finally had my first day on the job),...and justification for the shitloads of money I spent getting 100hrs in that stupid f*cking R44!
So yes, I am a quitter and yes I do have a bad attitide, but it hasn't kept from making a few achievements in my life (been doing those pushups for about eleven years now by the way) and I'm going to continue to tell newbies that this job isn't worth what it takes to get!
,...'cause that's just who I am, a happy recreational pilot with a negative attitude and nice pecks!
Anyway, this therapy session is over, how many more 'til I can finally let go of the bitterness from a ten year job search?,...only time will tell.
As I sit here in the food court eating my beloved fries and lamenting on life's choices, one more thing about quitting comes to mind. Why I have 40hrs of hood time yet no Instrument Rating?
Its a long story, but to sum it up, halfway through my training my CFi left for the GOM. Afterwards things just seemed to fall apart and I became really frustrated with the school and started to really hate flying (the fun of IFR wears off after about 20hrs).
Two days before my scheduled checkride we found out there were a few things my new CFi had neglected to teach me! Fed up with the issues which had been brewing over the past couple of weeks topped with this icing on the cake I said f*ckit and quit!
Now what gets me thinking about this every so often is not that I quit so close to the end, but that (like my experience with my first job) when I did quit, no one tried to talk me out of it?
A bit disheartening in retrospect.
Years back when I was in highschool I tried that place where you get to dogfight in military trainers. Ten minutes in I got hella sick and couldn't continue (fortunately there were three of us up there so the other guy didn't miss out).
A few days later (out of the blue) I got a call from an ex-Airforce pilot who worked there (a guy I hadn't even met) telling me not to get discouraged, that a lot of guys get sick and I shouldn't give up on becoming a pilot!
Words of encouragement from a total stranger, but nothing from the CFi's with whom I'd flown, or the owner of the school,...or boss who just hired me...?
Just thoughts that keep me wondering?
The tour season is approaching, and theyve posted an ad already so,
Once youve made it through the interview youll know the conditions in which you will be flying (as I did) now heres what he didnt tell me;
We dont take breaks here. Direct quote from Freddy. So if you want to eat anything during your ten to twelve hour shift youll have to, Quickly shovel it into your mouth whenever you find a free second! - another pilot told me.
If you cannot work that long (without a break) without getting too tired to (safely) fly passengers in and out of that wire basket, and you express your concerns to him, his response will be, Suck it up and bear through it! Direct quote from Freddy. You will though have to answer some questions on an ipad before starting the engine, one of which is, Are you physically or mentally fatigued? Seems his ass is covered, yours is not!
Now I get that to most here (especially you twenty-somethings with your lives ahead of you) that something as trivial as a lunch break, or your boss flippant attitude towards safety and/or the lives of his customers, is a fair trade off for getting your careers started (you gotta pay your dues right)! Me though, Im middle-aged, and this was just a career change idea, and at this point in life being treated like a human being is more important that a job!
The point of this post is; Know what questions to ask before you take the job! Because if you just assume you will be treated like a human being, well, You know what happens when you assume? Direct quote from Freddy!
So, if you can work for a guy who obviously has no respect for you or for the people who have entrusted you with their lives, then,
Have a nice season!
,and remember, Youre on salary, we own your ass! quote from the guy who was training me.
Meds are starting to kick in, and I've only got a few minutes 'till they put the "jacket" back on and take me back to my padded room,...and I have to pee, so...
I can't believe after almost a year I'm still this pissed about what happened! Freddy Rick is the sorriest excuse for a human being for whom I have ever had the displeasure of working!!!!!! He runs that operation like a 19th century sweat shop!,...still can't believe he called me an ass for assuming I'd get a measly half hour break in a twelve hour shift!!! And that joke of a risk assessment, "Are you physically or mentally fatigued?" I answered yes,decided not to fly, and for my proper aeronautical decision making, got called into Freddy's office where he chewed me out because I didn't, "Just suck it up and bear through it!" What would his customers think about their pilot flying while tired?
I said, "Isn't it dangerous to fly tired, especially with passengers?"
Freddy responded, "Just suck it up and bear through it."
In forty-five years that's the most despicable thing anyone has ever said to me! I know I sound like a broken record, but I just can't seem to let this go! Such blatant disregard for safety, it boggles my mind.
If he had mentioned at any time during the hiring process, or any of our three interviews, or better yet in the job post itself, that I'd be required to work twelve hours a day without a break, I never would have even applied for the job in the first place!!! I mean, whay kind of person treats other people like that?! When I think of all the money I spent on those interviews, airfares, hotels, rental cars, not to mention what I spent getting myself those extra twenty hours in the 44 to get to his ridiculous one hundred,...it makes me sick to my stomach!!!
Will I ever get over this?
Well my therapist says its time to say something positive, so,...here goes.
I've watched a lot of youtube's on tuna boat flying and am pretty sure I would enjoy that,..."IF" I could do it on a month on/month off type of contract.
I enjoyed flying the Sikorsky, and believe that I would enjoy cherry drying,...especially since its also a short contract, and I'd get to fly alone!
I also believe I'd enjoy frost patrol (certainly enjoyed training for it), plus I do like flying at night,...and alone!
Undoubtedly the activity I enjoyed the most in the commercial world, was flying with Boatpix. Its fun flying, I like flying over water, and I love the R22 Mariner! If it were a real job (i.e. I didn't have to buy my way in, and he hired real photographs so I wouldn't have hold the camera), I'd consider making it a career!
Well that's as positive as I get
4000 views, damn! Hope you guys are brining popcorn
Admitting other possibilities,...
The things Freddy said to me were so outrageous that sometimes I wonder if maybe it was just an act? I mean I know I don't have the most likeable personality (why do you think it took ten years to get hired,...Hell just ask NR he's the only member who has actually met me, and he didn't hire me even after saying, "All we care about is can you can fly the helicopter, and we know you can fly", so it had to be my personality he didn't like). So maybe his wife had forced him to hire me (she's the one who got me the interview, seemed very nice when I met here too) and he was just acting like an a**hole to get rid of me as quickly as possible?
He was so professional when I first met him, more professional and courteous than any operator I had delt with in my ten year job search, so much so that it really impressed me (still does too)! Thats's why his Jeckle and Hyde turnaround after I was hired was such a shock! Now given the $25k price he put over my head (not to mention the things his former head pilot told me on my first interview) I doubt it, but sometimes I do wonder? Even if it was an act though, it still cost me a sh*t-load of money and I'll forever despise him for that!
Perhaps one day he'll screw over another pilot an they'll come here to share their story,...and confirm mine?
About a month later I got a job with Fedex back home. I'll never forget the one day during training where we were going over company policy. They told me after five hours I'd get a half hour break, then (and this is the part I loved the most) if I worked more than eight hours I'd get a second half hour break! With a sigh of relief I thought to myself, "Its good to be back in civilization!"
In the end my failure to become a career pilot boils down to just one issue. The jobs for which I have the hours simply require a level of people skills I just don't possess!
Just got rid of the 2016 Civic I had leased when I thought I was going to be driving from one side of the country to the other twice a year for two to three years.
As I drove to the dealeship I could not help but reflect on being in Freddy's office signing my contract. All the while thinking, "sh*t, I was hoping he wasn't going to offer me the job!"
I don't know if it was the fact that it had taken ten long agonizing years to get to that job offer that made me feel that way, or maybe I never really wanted to be a working pilot in the first place, and had just been fooling myself all those years, but anyway,...it was pretty f*cked up!
With that car gone now though, the last chapter of this story is finally over!
So what's next for our loveable loser?
Been thinking about saving up some dough to lease an R44 Cadet, then starting my own little business running supplies out to people who live out in butt-crack nowhere?
By the way, for those of you who do pass by here, the reason I keep harping on this is because I still feel a great deal of anger over what happened, and burying it here in this obscure topic is a way for me to get it out of my system without bothering the regulars.
5000 views woo hoo! Hope you're enjoying this,...Bingbot
Edited by r22butters, 18 August 2017 - 19:32.