I was mean to a little old lady

CA1900

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I'm usually very patient and nice to people when they come up and ask me questions while I'm in uniform. After all, I'm seen as someone who should, at least theoretically, be able to help them in an airport. So I try, as best I can. But the following happened off-duty, before work...

I finally lost it in the hotel the other day. I woke up later than I wanted -- I had about half an hour to shower, get dressed, pack, get downstairs, and hopefully have a little time for a quick breakfast in the hotel. I rushed, and got downstairs with 7 minutes until van time. Just enough -- or so I thought.

As soon as I get downstairs, I run into my FO and two little old ladies at the table next to ours. I politely said "good morning" as I headed to the cereal dispenser, and the questions started.

"Where are you going?" "Where'd you fly in from?" "Oh, that's a nice place; our bus will be going through there today." "Who do you work for?"

I made small talk as I made my cereal and poured a cup of coffee to go. Then I sat down and took a bite. About 5 minutes until van time. Bite #2, one chew, and the questions continue.

"So, do you fly the big planes?" I shake my head no and keep chewing.

"Is it one of those puddle jumpers?"

"So, what kind of plane do you fly?"

I can't take it anymore. I finish chewing my bite as she stares at me, waiting patiently for my reply. "Ma'am, I'm not trying to be rude, but I have exactly 4 minutes before I need to be on my way to work. I got four hours of sleep, a long day ahead, and this is the only food I'm going to get to sustain me for about 6 more hours. I just don't have time to talk right now."

Eyes go wide. "What, so you don't want me to talk to you, then?"

"Uhhhh... no. Sorry."

The more I thought about it, the madder I got. First I was mad at her for interrupting me, repeatedly, when I was very clearly trying to eat.

Then I felt bad for snapping at a little old lady.

Then I got mad at myself for feeling bad, when she was the one who couldn't take a hint!

I'm going to start putting my shoulder boards and ID on in the van. Sheesh.
 
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100LL... Again!

youwantapieceofme??
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Don't feel too bad. Although they probably need a little interaction, you really have no choice. Old folks can be a little trying at times.

I never tell anyone I'm a pilot. I HATE the ensuing 30 minutes of questions.

And it's always the same d-mn questions every time.

"What route do you fly?"

"Do you want to be a commercial pilot someday?"
 
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chperplt

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What route do you fly... Must be in a 20 questions to ask a pilot book.
 

shamrock

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You've worked at ***censored*** for what, 7, 8 years? I'm surprised you're just now losing it.
 

Stifler's Mom

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"I got robbed by a sweet old lady on a motorized cart, and I didn't even see it coming!"
 

atrdriver

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I'll never forget, I was filling up my plate with crab legs at one of the now grounded floating casinos when a little old lady ran into me with one of those silly go carts. Then ran over my foot, all trying to bump me out of the way to get to the crab legs. I really wanted to lift the front wheel off the ground. From then on whenever I saw an old lady coming for food I just ran...
 

Fly_Chick

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Poor little lady, she was probably so taken aback that she was 'sharing' breakfast with a pilot. Just remember to smile when you tell them you are too rushed to spend more time. You handled the situation diplomatically.
 

pilotmiketx

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Should have told her you were still drunk from the night before. At least she didn't drop her dentures in you milk.
 

rvsm410

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You should have pretended to be deaf, and used sign language....then aht kind of face do you think she would have had??? Ha! Now that would have been funny....Dont be to tough on you're self....
 

Av8rPHX

The Dude abides...
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Like someone posted on a thread quite some time ago... just tell them you are in the high speed aluminum tubing industry.. but then again, that may incite more questions than "what route do you fly" or "when do you get to fly the real planes"
 

avbug

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I was checking into a hotel once when a little old lady approached and asked what time we were leaving. She pointed out the window at a bus. I nodded, checked the departure time, and told her. She asked if I would be her driver. I told her I didn't think so, but I would be more than pleased to be her driver, and told her I hoped I saw her on the bus. She was all smiles when she left.

Checking into a hotel once, we asked the rate. They told us. We asked the government rate. They told us. It was worse. We asked what got the best rate. Turns out it was a truck driver. They asked what we did, we told them we were truck drivers. They said fine, what kind of truck do you drive? We said "belly dump." (We were flying a tanker, dropping mud). We got the discount. No further explaination required.

Now when people ask, they see the epaulets, they see the tie, the see what used to be my hair, combed and trimmed as much as I dare. I tell them I drive the bus in the parking lot. Never get asked twice.

However, if you're having trouble fending off that first question, "Are you a pilot?," I suggest one of the following openers to guide you in your conversation:

"No, ma'am, I'm not. But ever since I got put on the child sex offender list, I find this uniform helps keep the reporters off my back. Say, that's a nice daughter you have there. How old is she?"

"No, Sir. I just wear this snazzy set of threads cuz the chicks dig it. I like brunettes. Petite ones, like that one by your side. She's your wife? Cooool, if you dig me. Heeey, babe, I'm a pilot. What do you think about that?"

"No, sir. I'm wearing this uniform to cover up my leperosy. It helps me meet people who would otherwise turn away in disgust. May I shake your hand?"

"Pilot? Yes, sir. I'm here volunteering for the Salvation Army, taking the time to collect for Friends of Katrina. How about a big, hearty donation in the name of the Lord?"

"Pilot? Yes, I was, until those blood sucking leaches in management furloughed my ass. Now I roam hotels looking for people upon whom to feed until my unemployment kicks in. Will you be my friend?"

"Pilot, und zchekersplit zie doy? Nichen und farfegnugen lolipop, und est wilderspaden nogoot. Funda, kunda, wunda, ert, ert zie splat. Goobledegok, ein schwein trein spline ascot balderdash zie die. Unt, hile hitler!"

"Pilot, I whast ah piwlot, wot befwhore I gonean marie ie ied the bottle. In juhst twelfsh schteps I, ah, I can fly again. You wahnna go?"

"Well, sort of a pilot. I mean, I fly. Sometimes. At night. To visit my children. We go together, my children and I. My children of the night. We go, to suck the blood, I mean visit the fair people of this great city. In the night. We go. Yes. Has anyone ever told you, madam, that you have lovely veins in your neck? I thought so."

Those usually work for me, and you're welcome to try them. Or you could come up with your own. It's not as hard as you might think and then you can stop abusing little old ladies. Unless you like it...
 

cforst513

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"you know, i guess what they say is true: senior citizens, though slow and dangerous behind the wheel, can still serve a purpose. i'll be right back.... don't go dyin' on me!!"
 

UnAnswerd

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CA1900 said:
"So, what kind of plane do you fly?"

I can't take it anymore. I finish chewing my bite as she stares at me, waiting patiently for my reply. "Listen bitch, I haven't the time to suffer through your relentless, idiotic questions. Shut your mouth so I can eat my f***ing breakfast"!!!

Eyes go wide. "What, so you don't want me to talk to you, then?"

Dude, that's really harsh.
 

NuGuy

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Heyas,

I just put in a pair ear phones from an iPod or other similar device. It gives everyone the clue that I'm not listening to them. Most of the time they're not even plugged in, and the plug is just stuck in my pocket.

You can also use a phone headset, but then you have to come up with 1/2 of a conversation.

Nu
 

FN FAL

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CA1900 said:
As soon as I get downstairs, I run into my FO and two little old ladies at the table next to ours. I politely said "good morning" as I headed to the cereal dispenser, and the questions started...
You missed out on a perfect opportunity to get your chicken deboned...little old ladies need loving too, doncha know?
 

Crimson03

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FN FAL said:
You missed out on a perfect opportunity to get your chicken deboned...little old ladies need loving too, doncha know?
And I hear the pay is better than most airlines ...
 

learflyer

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what I hate is when you are riding in a long, slow, elevator with a bunch of people. I try and just stare straight ahead, but you can see in the corner of your eye that they are locking in to your epaulets, id tags, name tag etc to see what you do. I sometimes just want to look at them and say BAM!
 
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