Flying Straight and Level

Now Benj, that is not what I call straight and level flight.

I used to take flying lessons earlier this decade.

Jessica bought me my first lesson as a father's day gift, and I fell in love. It's hard not to get bitten by that bug when you drive past the Wright Brothers Memorial and First Flight Airport almost every day on your way to and from home. I logged over 20 hours in the cockpit before reaching the inevitable conclusion that it's probably the most expensive hobby I could have picked.

Building a garage for a water plane in my back yard and flying back and forth to New England would not save money, it turns out. Nor would it get me there any faster in a single-engine Cessna! When I discovered that my employer prohibits flying oneself around on business trips, that was the last straw. Kayaking and cross-stitching breathed a sigh of relief when I quit.

Back in those flying days, taking off and landing, radioing air traffic control, and performing various in-flight maneuvers were exciting, required my full attention, and generally turned out okay. Sure I had a lot of "go-arounds" when my landing wasn't going to be perfect, but a lot of flying is just learning to set aside your ego... and to contantly scope out the closest comfortable place to crash-land.

It was the rest of the time, simply going from point A to point B, that was hard for me. Straight and level flight. Keep your heading, keep your altitude, keep your airspeed, and scan for traffic. I could be doing this for an hour, and the whole time wondering, what am I missing? Isn't there something else I should be doing right now? I would always overthink it.

Sorry. As far as analogies go, this one took longer than expected to develop! Almost there...

Right now Charitocracy has no known bugs. Things are going smoothly. We've given away 4 monthly pots, and have 35 excellent nominees from which to choose in January. We're steadily growing the donor count and pot size, now at 159 and $697, respectively. We have achieved straight and level flight! So I intend to take a short break from the all-nighter acrobatics, chill out a bit, and just enjoy the view for as long as my restless mind can take it.

I am serious about Charitocracy. And don't call me Shirley.