Browse Grassroots, a collection of flying-related articles by Budd Davisson. An accomplished aviation journalist, Budd shares his perspective on all kinds of flight-related subjects.
Monday, December 14, 2015
Walls That Talk
Of Bear Traps, N Numbers and Neat Junk
One of the advantages of visiting a friend in his home and/or office is that you get a sense of their environment.
Monday, November 9, 2015
Junk Is In The Eye Of The Beholder
Special interest worlds don’t overlap as much as you think
With hundreds of people milling around me, I didn't actually hear the engine, but I certainly felt it! It was a deliciously smooth snarl that I could actually feel in my chest.
Wednesday, October 7, 2015
Cool stuff, memories and anniversaries
Having been there so many times, I found myself seeing the grounds much the same way I see my old hometown.
Tuesday, September 8, 2015
Words At The Beginning
When someone gives us a break, but we often don’t say thanks
After you've reached a certain age, when you get an email with a friend's name in the title, you know that the news is never good.
Tuesday, July 21, 2015
It’s The Little Stuff That Gets You
Everyone needs a wake-up call now and then
The student was driving, and we had just been given clearance to take off.
Tuesday, June 9, 2015
The Aviator Voice
Having “that” sound can’t be faked
The other day, as I was pushing my trusty mount out of the hangar, a pilot was having trouble getting a rental Cirrus back in the hangar next door, so I stopped and gave him a hand.
Tuesday, May 12, 2015
Do we really need tattletales in our midst?
The voice had a very indignant tone to it. As if the tower should pay special attention to everything he said.
Tuesday, April 7, 2015
The simplest solution is usually overlooked
Okay, I know that airliners spend a lot of their time being tracked on someone's radar scope and talking to ATC, so the assumption is that someone, somewhere knows exactly where they are at all times.
Tuesday, March 10, 2015
And Life Goes On
People in our lives we don’t know but should
Today has been a hard one for those of us who follow history: First thing this morning, I learned that Alex Vraciu, America's highest-scoring surviving ace, had died.
Tuesday, February 10, 2015
One Man’s Junk Is…
We all have junkyard dreams—or do we?
My own airplane-in-a-barn story didn't involve a barn.
Tuesday, December 16, 2014
Too Late Gives No Warning
If you have dreams, put them into action today
They live their retirement dreams before retiring.
Tuesday, October 21, 2014
Overhauls, new sounds, the Old Gal labors on
I've known for a while my engine wasn't totally happy.
Tuesday, October 7, 2014
A Different Kind Of Calendar
Our year begins and ends in Wisconsin
If, at any given time, there are around 200,000 people on the grounds at the Oshkosh orgy of aviation, then there are probably the same number of reasons why they're there.
Tuesday, September 9, 2014
Sky King, Roy And The Gang
Was it a time of innocence or the formation of a generation?
It doesn't seem that long ago that more than just the TV was black-and-white.
Monday, September 1, 2014
The White-Coat Syndrome
It’s real, it’s ridiculous, and for some of us, it’s impossible to avoid
Courtesy of my laptop, it's 0450 hours (that's in the morning, in case you missed my whining), and I'm in another airport terminal.
Tuesday, July 8, 2014
The little stuff you pick up about aviation by living it
As the student settled into the back pit and started to put his headset on, I stopped him and took his baseball hat off his head.
Tuesday, June 3, 2014
Oh, No! Not More Changes!
There comes a time in life when status quo looks really attractive
I first noticed it when one of our newer controllers, whose voice I didn't recognize, told us we were cleared for takeoff on Runway Tree. Tree? Huh!
Tuesday, May 6, 2014
TFRs And The Little Guy
I’m not sure of their purpose, and “they” aren’t aware of the effects
My student was from England. The first hop of the day was normal: from calling ATIS to flying the flight, nothing unusual.
Tuesday, April 1, 2014
When Is A Hobby Not A Hobby?
Regardless of how little a person flies, is it really a pastime?
Maybe it's a personal thing, but to apply the term "hobby" or "pastime" to flying sounds somehow demeaning.
Tuesday, March 11, 2014
Survivors In The Pattern
History is fleeting moments of the Human Experience strung together
I had an emotionally wild and totally unexpected thing happen last week.