Yes, I Fly Helicopters

But come on, get real.

Yes, I fly helicopters for a living. Yes, the red R44 parked out in the dirt is mine. Yes, I bought it new and paid every penny of the $346K it cost, plus interest on the 8-year loan I needed to finance it. Yes, I am aware that’s more than your house probably cost. It’s definitely more than what my house cost.

I’m sorry, but no, just because a friend of yours introduced you to me in a bar tonight doesn’t mean I’m going to take you for a free ride. So don’t waste any more time telling me that you want me to fly crazy and swearing that you’ll sit still while I do so — as if that somehow matters. I have no intention of taking your creepy ass for a ride and would likely find an excuse not to do it even if you did offer to pay me. Which is unlikely. How much do I have to rudely text one of my friends while you jabber about the movie set you worked on 20 years ago in a failed attempt to impress me? How long before you realize I want nothing to do with you? How long before you just go away?

Thank you, yes, it is a beautiful helicopter. You should see it when it’s clean! But no, flying it is not a hobby. As a matter of fact, I have found a way to get paid for hovering. Imagine that! How else do you think I could afford to fly it? Do you think I’m independently wealthy? Or that I’ve got a sugar daddy paying my bills? Amazing that a woman can build a career flying helicopters, no? That someone is actually willing to pay me to do it. Amazing.

What’s that you want? The pay for a commercial helicopter pilot? The “lowest to highest salary and the average”? I’m sorry, but no, I don’t have detailed information about the pay scale for helicopter pilots. I’m an owner/pilot, not a career counselor or headhunter. I know what I make but that’s none of your business. I can tell you this: people who fly helicopters for the money are usually disappointed.

Four moronic men in four days. Just a sample of the kind of idiotic assumptions and questions I put up with from complete strangers. Don’t they think before they communicate? Don’t they realize how rude they’re being by making their assumptions about me and my life? By asking their questions in such a demeaning way?

Yeah, I know I get cranky about things like this. But seriously: four in four days?

15 thoughts on “Yes, I Fly Helicopters

  1. I’m sitting here shaking my head and laughing all at the same time. Wow. The backward thinking, the stereotyping, the lack of manners and then some….

    I still remember a WOMAN telling me after I finished a Master of Arts degree in Piano Performance & Literature that it must be a nice hobby. It was all I could do to politely respond that it’s a profession, not just a hobby, and that yes, I love it. SMH

    I had a MAN tell me, “Oh, you JUST had a caesarean?” like it was nothing. Well, let me tell you that major surgery with a baby cut out of your uterus and then stitching you all back up is NOT nothing. SMH

    And oh, yes, I’ve dated men who think they’ll get a free website from me just because we went out once or twice, too. SMH

    Some people are just clueless, naive, backward, lack manners, lack thinking before talking, lack ethics, and more. So we live and learn. Sometimes we can kindly correct our friends or have a friendly discussion, and for others we just move on and see who we don’t want to associate with, that’s for sure.

  2. It’s odd because in two of the four examples above, the questions arrived from complete strangers as a first contact on a social network. The one that bothered me most was: “beautiful helicopter! Is it a hobby or have you found a way to get paid for hovering?” WTF?

    It’s one thing to get slightly offensive comments from friends or young people who don’t know any better. But from people you just met or people who SHOULD know better? Really bugs me.

  3. Jeez. There are some dumb ones out there. I have had some interesting experiences as a female aircraft owner as well. I bought a Cessna 170a at 25 (half with money I had saved up from working, half with a loan). One of the strangest comments I would get after an individual found out that I owned it was, “Oh, do you fly it?”

    WTF?! I got this question a number of times.

    • Hell, I got that question just the other day. Again. As if a person would own a small aircraft and not fly it. Why else would I own a helicopter?

  4. Respectfully:
    You’re way too sensitive. Come on, what do you expect? Smart conversation and iintersting topics?? The general public is the general public. Want intelligent questions? Go surround yourself with smart people.
    In most locations, the general public is primarily consisted of worker bee types that aren’t ever gonna graduate from Harvard or even win a round of Jeopardy.
    I have an old friend who theorizes that most issues like you’re describing boil down to one thing: IQ.

    • Four in four days. It was too much. I cracked and ranted on my blog.

      And believe me, there’s nothing I’d like more than to surround myself with smart people — preferably people smarter than me!

  5. PS
    If you expect sharp minds and well thought out replies on “Facebook” then it may be you with the problem. I believe the posts one makes on that site is directly correlated to the person’s intellectual capacity. The more posts, the less brain.

    • Sorry for the multiple posts. I enjoy reading your helicopter stuff but (sometimes) you come across as a tad too much of a hot head. Please note, I am not disagreeing with anything you said, just opining that maybe you’re too smart to expect much out of dumb people.
      The brilliant comedian Sasha Baron Cohen once as a Washington politico think tank member the following:
      “Why does, in America, the dumb people get as many votes as the smart people?”
      That really sums it up.

    • I have zero tolerance for bullshit. When enough of it accumulates, I vent. That’s one of the reasons I have a blog. And if you think I’m a hothead, you probably haven’t visited enough helicopter forums.

  6. Maria,
    We have a lot of really, really dumb people in America. That frustrates me to no end.
    We have a mutual friend in Phil Greenspun

What do you think?