Let me begin by saying that while I have rather more sympathy for so-called sports people than I used to, I still tend to think that school athletics are something that’s supposed to accent a school career, not define it. So I begin by reading this article with a great deal of skepticism.
If one’s fourteen year old’s scheduling skills are so poor that he cannot make it to a tennis lesson on time, perhaps one might want to begin by working on those skills, first.
More to the point, while I’m generally have a good deal of respect for most GA pilots and aviation, this guy is a pretty clear argument to counter the idea that a roadable aircraft might be a good thing. The idea of flying in to the local golf course just to get someone to a tennis lesson on time has me shaking my head.
I don’t even want to know what thought processes were being used by the pilot in this story. I’m afraid that they might, somehow, through some sort of contagious brain melting, make sense.
What a maroon. They’d have a pretty strong case for revoking his pilot’s license - that’s a pretty irresponsible thing to do, considering the petty circumstances. Getting Timmy out of the burning well is one thing, but tennis lessons?
Doubt it. He was on the local news last night and blathered about how bad traffic is, how an airplane is a perfectly acceptable form of alternate transportation, etc., etc. Yeah. Except when you land it on some hotel’s golf course without permission, and fly in such a fashion that it triggers 911 calls from concerned people reporting what they think is a plane with mechanical trouble. I think part of his defense involved something to the effect of not being near/conflicting with any flight plans.
Was it even a lesson? The article seems to suggest that he just had a tennis date with a friend. I mean, there’s nothing I can think of that would condone such behavior, but I’d be a little more inclined to at least understand his motivation if he thought the kid’s tennis scholarship was on the line and desperately needed that one last lesson before tryouts.
Y’know, for the price of the fuel he expended alone, he could have hired a professional instructor for the day. Or, y’know, little Timmy could just freakin’ deal with it. And if it was just a tennis date, then there needs to be some additional distribution of smacks upside the head.