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Turtle Chasin'

Kayak Jack

Well-Known Member
Aug 26, 2003
12,903
55
80
Okemos / East Lansing Michigan
#1
Some planes are faster than others, meaning that also, some are slower. Mine is of a slower breed. On top of that, I throttle it back even more to a slow cruise. Saves fuel and I get to see more scenery that way. Suits me fine. But, some friends call it my “Turtle Chaser”. So, here's what that might be like, chasin' turtles.


Springtime now, and turtles are out sunning themselves on bright days. I waited for CAVU weather - pronounced 'Kay-voo' and stands for Clear, And Visibility Unlimited. In other words, picnic weather. Our local river, the Red Cedar, has a few fish, and some turtles too. Turtles should be out today. So, I prowled there. “AHH! There's some out on a log! Down we go!”

Maybe you've noticed on the ads for geezer scooters, one of them also offers a telescoping grabber rod. Has a large, pistol grip you hang on to, squeeze a long trigger, and way out on the business end a pair of pincers close around a can on a high shelf. The geezer can remain seated on his (brand name here, as advertised on TV), and has a big, $h!t eatin' grin on his face. He's so happy to be using this extended grabber arm. I have one of these in my hand, ready to snatch up an unwary turtle. No grin on my face, just a determined smirk.

We're skimming along the river now, the Ruptured Duck (my plane) and me. Her engine sounds nice, smooth. Turtles are jumping into the water behind us, but none ahead. I have my turtle in sight - “Target Acquired!” I announce to no one in particular, lining up the last resort ring-and-post machine gun sight that's duct taped to the windshield.

Put in 10 degrees of flaps, add carb heat to prevent carb icing, ease back on the throttle, about 80 mph should be good turtle snatching speed. Roll up on the left wing a bit, so I can reach out the window, past the wing strut, with this grabber arm, get it into position.

DAMN! He's moving. He's heard us. A bit lower, a few more degrees of bank, timing it right is tricky. As he raises his head to jump, CLICK! I came up empty – missed him.

WHOA there - trees up ahead; we have to clear those obstacles. Full throttle, carb heat off, back on the yoke for more altitude. Pop up above the trees, level out to let air speed build again, raise flaps, and circle around and make a downstream run.

No more turtles, so I go hunting for canoeists and sunbathers. If there's no more turtles out, maybe some ta-tas?
 

oldyaker

Well-Known Member
Aug 26, 2003
1,829
0
#4
Well as we're into tall tales..... :roll:


The Ghost Pilots of Times Square



He had just graduated from Harvard University and was living in Manhattan. He loved the city and was beginning to feel at home on its streets. World War II was raging in Europe, and like all other good citizens, he followed the headlines daily and did his part for the boys overseas.

Hugging his jacket close, he stood shivering at the corner, waiting for the light to change and wondering where his enlisted friends might be staying on that cold winter night. He hoped they were safe. He shivered, only partially from the cold, and looked around him at the bright lights of Times Square. He never tired of this glittering scene.

His eye was caught by two men who were dressed in the uniforms of the Royal Air Force of England. They must be on leave, he thought. The men stopped beside him, glanced quickly at their watches, and then nodded and grinned at him. The taller of the two asked him, in the clipped accent of the British, if this was Times Square. He suppressed a smile at such a touristy question and said that it was.

The light changed, and the two RAF pilots fell into step with the Harvard graduate as he crossed the street. The three men fell into conversation together as they meandered along the shining streets. The Brits were thrilled to be in Times Square after all they had suffered in the war. They didn't go into detail about their wartime experiences, and he didn't press them. He just enjoyed their pleasure in the scene, which was marred only by the frequent checking of their watches. Finally, he asked if they had someplace to be, but they said they were free for the evening. He promptly invited them to have dinner with him at the Harvard Club, and the RAF pilots accepted with alacrity.

The three men repaired immediately to the Harvard Club, where they dined leisurely and chatted late into the evening. The RAF pilots were good company and told many stories, although they glossed over their experiences in the war. They continued to check their watches frequently throughout the night, but he decided it was just a nervous habit they had picked up somewhere - possibly in the air force.

As midnight approached, the two RAF pilots excused themselves are rose from the table. They thanked the Harvard man for a memorable evening and started for the door. Then the tall pilot turned back and told their host that they had always wanted to visit Times Square, but never had the opportunity. It was strange, the pilot added, that they had to wait until after they were dead - killed in action when their planes were shot down the night before over Berlin - to fulfill this dream.

The Harvard man stiffened, his eyes widening incredulously and his mouth falling open in shock. He gasped but could not speak. The phantom RAF pilot smiled sardonically at him, nodded, and joined his friend in the doorway. Then the pilots vanished before the astonished man's eyes, just at the stroke of twelve midnight. :shock:

Turtle chasing...Really Jack!
 

Kayak Jack

Well-Known Member
Aug 26, 2003
12,903
55
80
Okemos / East Lansing Michigan
#5
DANG! Uncle Yakus Remusicus. You do tell great tales. Did I ever tell you about the time I hit a fella on the head with a pop bottle? His eyes fell right out on the floor and rolled around. The left one winked at me.

'Sides, whut I told was the truth. S'help me god.
 

graybeard

Well-Known Member
Dec 24, 2009
255
0
56
Between keyboard and chair
#6
Ha! round here, the turtle chasers just grab the sunbather's kini top. The wingman has the gun cameras. There are some FBO's that fly them like pennants at the used car dealer, but most consider that braggin'.

Let us know when you're ready for the big leagues :wink:
 

Kayak Jack

Well-Known Member
Aug 26, 2003
12,903
55
80
Okemos / East Lansing Michigan
#7
Well, Buckeye McGraybeard, it'll be a while before I'm ready for your big leagues, still a bush leaguer. Used to pop kini tops as I rode by on my motorcycle, but cold WX here has prevented that from an airborne attack mode. Modamnedsukoshe, I hope, warmer temps will bring out the sun worshipers and, both some mushrooms and tatas will spring up.

I might fly down to visit you, and let you train me for the big leagues. I'm a willing learner.
 

graybeard

Well-Known Member
Dec 24, 2009
255
0
56
Between keyboard and chair
#8
They're out of my league too.
My plane is made of plastic, and has pedals on the bottom. I have to go vroom, vroom as I pedal down the sidewalk. The neighbors look at me funny, but I just shake my fist and yell, "Curse you, Red Baron", and they leave me alone.

Unfortunately, I'm not a pilot. I ran out of money after ground school, then when I had money I ran out of time. Now I'm out of time and money.

I did catch Sky King in reruns, though.

 

graybeard

Well-Known Member
Dec 24, 2009
255
0
56
Between keyboard and chair
#10
IMHO, he's one of the best pop singers of my generation. He writes clever lyrics, steals riffs from all sorts of genres, and has grown from an angry punk pop rocker to a musical encyclopedia. Plus he married Diana Krall, who is a total babe, and sings like a nightingale.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elvis_Costello


The quote sums up my general feeling - things that would have bugged me when I was young are just shrugged off now. Ironically, it's from a song about a broken romance, Red Shoes.

Oh I used to be disgusted
And now I try to be amused
Since their wings have gotten rusted
You know, the angels wanna wear my red shoes

Oh, I said "I'm so happy, I could die"
She said "Drop dead," then left with another guy
That's what you get if you go chasing after vengeance
Ever since you got me punctured this has been my sentence
Another famous hit was Radio, Radio
Some of my friends sit around every evening
And they worry about the times ahead
But everybody else is overwhelmed by indifference
And the promise of an early bed
You either shut up or get cut up, they don't wanna hear about it
It's only inches on the reel-to-reel
And the radio is in the hands of such a lot of fools
Tryin' to anaesthetise the way that you feel