thousand and six. I still have trouble
talking about a year that begins with two
thousand. Nineteen ...... that's what a
year should sound like. Nineteen sixty,
or nineteen eighty nine or nineteen ten.
Who in the future will be comfortable
stating their birthday as two thousand
and ten? Sounds more like a science
marches on. I don't consider myself an
old geezer yet, although that description
can't be too far in the future. Already I
find it more difficult to remember exact
dates, and when telling a story will
struggle with a date by drawing it out.
"That was back in nineteeeeeeen ...
whatever " . Like my grandpa used to
do. And all the old war veterans. Come to
think of it, my dad does it a lot. As I
said, time marches on. We can run but we
can't hide. We're getting older, one day
at a time.
for a moment, that airplane you have
sitting out in the hangar. There's a good
chance it's actually older than you are.
But we don't call it an old geezer. It's
still airworthy, and quite possibly
better than when it was built, back in
nineteen sixty five, or whenever. At
least once a year she gets someone's full
attention, a couple of replacement parts
and sometimes even a piece of new
equipment, which is better than the
original. We treat most airplanes better
than we treat ourselves, or each other.
year brings the opportunity for some kind
of renewal. A New Years resolution, a
promise we make to improve or change
something about ourselves. I wonder how
many pilots have thought to call it
an"annual" instead of a
resolution. Quite apart from the medical
where we take stock of our physical
health, the "annual" could be a
checkup on our mental and emotional well
checklist could include things like how
considerate, trustworthy, compassionate,
caring and thoughtful we've been to other
people, and to ourselves. What values
we've honored in the past year. What
we've done to enhance our families, our
communities, our friends and ourselves.
Basically we'd be taking stock of our own
integrity to be sure we're operating to
would have to set the standards, design
the checklist, and even issue the A.D.'s.
Obviously, that would be you, as the
owner/builder of your thoughts, the
person authorized for maintenance and
responsible for the upkeep.
constantly seek ways to improve our
airplanes. Why then should we neglect our
performance as humans? New years
resolutions could go a long way toward
such a noble goal. But consider that when
an airplane falters, an airworthiness
directive (A.D.) is issued. Inspection
and or maintenance is required before
it\rquote s ready to fly again. Waiting
for New Years is not an option. So why
wait until January 1rst to start
improving our personal lives? Any day of
the year can be a good time for a
inspection on our airplanes is invariably
more complicated and costly than
expected. But the comfort, the security
and confidence we feel when flying it the
rest of the year, makes it worth every
cent. Annual maintenance of our bodies
and minds should be a priority as well,
so that when we need the power to go for
a bike ride, a walk, to mow the lawn or
just pick up the tv remote, it\rquote s
always there. And when we need to make a
serious, complicated decision, we can
rely on a set of internalized moral
values and standards that are well
maintained, updated and current. One more
benefit of the body and mind annual,
could be an increase in the TBO. We might
even get by without a complete overhaul.
comfortable with this "year two
thousand and six" stuff will take me
some time and a fresh way of thinking.
It's all about change, all part of
keeping an open and healthy mind. I
figure on needing some help from my
children with that. If I can keep my mind
open to them.