I’ve started collecting ideas that are anti-flow. From Jonathan Bach’s Above the Clouds: A Reunion of Father and Son:

I turned a shallow left, lined up the directional gyro until the needle pointed to 36.

Another fifteen seconds in that bank and I dipped the let wing to see a little inlet, a freshwater lake with foothills surrounding it.

Richard took the stick.

“Here, I’ll just yank it around to base. Bring the power back a bit to fifteen hundred rpm.”

The takeoff was easy; landings were much different. It’s one thing to go from zero to one hundred twenty miles an hour, but do it backward?

“Uh, I don’t know…”

“Just one step at a time. Power back.”

Power Back.

“Flaps down.”


“Wiggle toes.”

“Wiggle toes?”

“Yep. Try it. Wiggle your toes.”


I did it. For those few seconds I was a passenger.

“Helps you relax. Am I right?”

“Hey! That’s cool. It works.”

“Makes you aware that you’re still human, that the airplane doesn’t have control of you.”

Sure enough, I had been caught up in exactly that, letting myself be an airplane.