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Years ago, I flew out of Santa Monica (SMO). Primary students quickly learned the controllers were sticklers, especially regarding radio communication. And that's understandable given the high volume of traffic. Early on a Saturday morning, I was holding short, awaiting clearance and monitoring the tower frequency. A student (I checked later) from an area airport was in the pattern.

Tower:
"Piper One Two Uniform, cleared to land."

Piper 12U:
"Cleared to land, One Two Unicorn."

[about a minute later]

Tower:
"One Two Uniform, contact Ground on 121.9."

Piper 12U:
"Ah okay, 121.9. And, ah, we're One Two UNICORN."

[pause]

Tower:
"That's fine, One Two UNICORN. You just go ahead now and contact Ground on 121.9 right away."

[Gales of laughter were heard in the background.]


J. Barry Mitchell
via e-mail


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