It's all over


Antisocial Monster
It's kinda strange writing this out, but it's all over a little sooner than I expected it to be. I flew my last trip as a jet driver last month and never even knew it.

I've pretty much had one of the worst months ever for having things go wrong. To start the month, I caught a cold for a few days. Not really a big deal, just overworked and hadn't been sleeping enough and it caught up with me. A few days of good sleep and fluids later and I was doing well.

Then I got some food stuck in my hiatal hernia, which while not a big deal, means I can't swallow. It required a 12 hour trip to the ER and in the end I ended up having an endoscopy done to remove the food. The sedation they use zones me out for a few days, so I was out for another week of work.

At the end of that week, finally feeling better, I said to myself, "I feel like a sloth, I need to get some exercise." So I grabbed my mountain bike and Propilot's brother to get some riding in. We were having a pretty good ride, but on an incredibly non technical part of the trail (most of the ride was actually incredibly non technical) I ate it and went flying off my bike. My helmet is destroyed, my back is ripped up from sliding on it and my wrist is now possibly broken. Put simply the docs don't know if it's a wrist sprain or a Scaphoid fracture, and won't release me to work until they know one way or another. They're making the decision on whether to put a cast on it on Monday, so I'll be in a splint or a cast for my wedding next Saturday.

Either way, the docs have knocked me out of work for the rest of the days that I have with the company, and I'm sick until the furlough. They kind of need to get things right the first time with my wrist, though, because if they get it wrong, it's fractured and they don't immobilize it here soon then they'll have to fix my hand with surgery, the bone could die and I'd probably end up with a screw in my hand. To be honest, I wish I had eaten it on a more gnarly part of the trail or something, then at least maybe I'd have a good reason to have the end of my month screwed up so much.

Anyway, it's kind of strange being done with this. I'm going to be on the street for a while in my mind, and I'm moving on with my life. I'm taking the LSAT in December and I'm planning on applying to law school for next fall.

It's incredibly strange making all these changes in my life, as all I've ever wanted to do was be a pilot. In the end, though, I never had any goals beyond simply being a pilot. I never had dreams of flying 777's across oceans to exotic destinations. When it really comes down to it, in my mind, I've accomplished all my goals in aviation so far. I wanted to flight instruct, and I did. I wanted to work at a freight company, and I did. I wanted to work for an airline, and I did. I don't care that I didn't make it to a mainline company, to be frank. The number of people in tow behind me doesn't matter to me, nor does how high or how fast I fly. I'm the kind of guy that can be happier, and in the end, probably is happier going low and slow. I know that now, and this experience has been invaluable in figuring that out.

I won't be leaving flying anytime soon, I enjoy it too much and I've got too much invested in it to simply walk away. I still have a set of flight instructor certificates, and I intend to use them to their fullest extent possible. In a lot of ways, this is good for me because I miss a lot of things about teaching. Looking back at things, what I did at Amflight was some of the best work I've done over the last 3 years. I hated LA, but worked with some cool cats and got to make a real impact on the folks that I was able to teach (a few of of which hang out here still).

But I've got other goals to accomplish now, which is the real reason why I'm moving away from paying by my bills by flying. Working at Amflight showed me a new love for flying, and working at an airline showed me that I don't love paying my bills by flying. It also gave me a lot of time to read again, and it's lead me to believe that I'm wasting my time flying airplanes for a living. It's fun, but in the end it won't give me what I want out of my life. I want to made a difference in the world, and I'm not going to do it flying airliners around. Marrying Emily in 8 days and starting a new chapter in my life is where I'm focused right now.

If there's anything I've realized in life, though, it's that things don't always go as planned, and don't ever say, "I'll never do X again!!!" I never thought...

-Me and Emily would split up

-Me and Emily would get back together

-I would enjoy flight instructing as much as I did

-I would move to Los Angeles and work at Amflight

-I would work for a regional airline. A lot of you probably know I was one of the most anti-RJ guys out there.

-I would get furloughed 14 months after starting at said regional.

-I would say, "Man, I can't wait to get home to UTAH"

-I would call up Captain Bob one night and say, "Bob, tell me about this regional airline thing."

So who knows if I'll end up back at an airline again. I might get recalled in 6 months after the company buys United and I upgrade right away. Lord knows crazier things have happened in this industry.

So with that, thanks a ton for everybody that has helped me along the way. ryanMickG was one of my instructors and then coworkers at Skymates. E-Dawg got me into Amflight. Bob and Alchemy got me in at Express. There are countless others from here that have mentored me through this whole process, and I can't thank you guys enough for all your help. Rest assured I've listened to, and considered everything you guys have taught me, and I fully intend on passing everything I've learned on to my future students as I move back to flight instructing.

I'll see ya'll in Vegas, right now I've got a test to study for and a wedding to go to.



New Member

Don't forget..."Nothing succeeds like failure."

Edison tried to invent the electric light bulb 200+ times before he succeeded. You just might find that a mind like yours is way to subtle for the airline flying business. You may just end up owning all of us in the long run.

Good luck on the LSATs. I'm sure you'll do better than I did. :banghead:


Well-Known Member
Grats on the wedding, good luck with your hand.

I don't have any insightful quotes. So...yeah.


Well-Known Member
ryanMickG was one of my instructors and then coworkers at Skymates. E-Dawg got me into Amflight. Bob and Alchemy got me in at Express. meritflyer held me tight at night and assured me everything, including his love for me, would be okay..
So sweet of you!


Beet Farmer
Congrats on the wedding, and sorry to hear about the furlough.

I do have some advice for ya. Make SURE the docs fix your hand correctly. I had a scaphoid fracture about 6 years ago, and after multiple trips to the doc, it resulted in surgery. Even if they do put a cast on it, it might not fully heal and the slighest pressure on your hand can re-break it...


Hubschrauber Flieger

Best of luck to you man. I think law school sounds like a terrific idea. You'll be a great lawyer one day, and I'll know you'll help a lot of people.


Staff member
Mad love to the both of you! Have a great wedding and enjoy the day :)

As for what lies ahead, to quote one of my favorite movies, Back to the Future III, "The future? It isn't written yet. Nobody's is. The future is what you make of it."

Make it great, no matter where you go. :)


Well-Known Member
Despite the various ailments being the reason, at least you got to skip commuting to reserve for a whole month and still get paid for it. So you've got that going for you, which is nice.

Glad I got to meet ya in the dungeon while you were there. Have a good wedding and good luck on the LSAT!


Snooki's Baby Daddy
Damn talk about a string of bad luck. But good to see you're not letting the furlough get to you.

What area of law are you thinking of pursuing? Could we have a future ALPA attorney amongst us?


New Member
Hey, don't get too down on yourself, just a string of coincidences. I've had some MTB accidents including a concussion (hey, don't need no helmet just jammin' around) -- it can happen to the best of us, so don't stress on that at all.

Congrats on your aviation career so far, you've already done what many aspire to do. And do that lawyer thing, then you can play pilot all you want. Here's a linky for you:

Soul Brotha'

Well-Known Member
Best of luck to ya, bro ham! As of right now, I'm trying to think of a way to get out of this mess. Not getting f(word), but just tired.


New Member
Just wanted to let you know that your enthusiasm and passion toward aviation has been one of my biggest motivators. So, thank you.

And I wish the very best of luck in whatever you decide to do.


Well-Known Member
Heal up and get back on the saddle. The riding is SO good right now. I popped out a Sweeny's, Powerline, Crest Trail, to the mid-mountain Canyons' descent yesterday and it was a blast.

You're probably just faking it so you wouldn't have to commute huh?


Antisocial Monster
Heal up and get back on the saddle. The riding is SO good right now. I popped out a Sweeny's, Powerline, Crest Trail, to the mid-mountain Canyons' descent yesterday and it was a blast.

You're probably just faking it so you wouldn't have to commute huh?
Hey you're a local so you'll even know where I was.

We went down to the city and did Shoreline north towards the U, then went up that gulch that turns into a traverse that'll get you to Bobsled. That traverse is where I ate it, not anything technical at all! It was a huge kick in the face, to tell you the truth. I've made it through 6 ski seasons and this whole mountain biking season without one injury until this one, and it was slated to be my last ride of the season.

Lee D

Well-Known Member
Good luck. Sorry to hear about your crash. . . . sounds pretty ugly. At least your injuries came from doing something cool rather than something such as falling down the stairs in your home or some other lame, glory free way of getting hurt. (For example I broke a toe by stubbing it on a open door. Limped around for weeks and didn't even have a good story to compensate for the pain.) My "glass is half full" way of putting a positive spin on being hurt. :)

I hope your new endeavors work out!


Evil Landlord Capitalist
It's fun, but in the end it won't give me what I want out of my life. I want to made a difference in the world, and I'm not going to do it flying airliners around.
I understand what you're saying here, Train. This is exactly why I originally got involved in union work, and it's why I've felt so aimless over the past year and half since I left my ALPA carrier and went back to being just a regular line pilot. Flying airplanes around is fun, and it pays the bills, but it doesn't really make a difference in anyone's life. I found much more satisfaction in going to a disciplinary representation and saving a pilot's job so he could keep providing for his family. That makes a difference. Flying yet another leg to CAK really doesn't. So I see where you're coming from. I just hope that you find a part of the legal field that allows you to be on the "right" side, and not become some sleazy corporate lawyer that I despise. :)


Well-Known Member
Congrats John! You are a great guy and life will work things the way it works them. Lawyer, Politician,.....President? ahah