Short Final

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An airline en route to [airport redacted] asked ATC if the had any smooth rides. ... Controller: "You won't find a smooth ride until you taxi into the gate." ... Pilot: "You haven't been [airport redacted] lately. The taxiways are just as bad as this ride!" -- Kirk Johnson More

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While landing in BOI last week, we overheard this great question from a pilot: ... Tower: "Cessna 123, turn left, heading 210, runway 28L; cleared for takeoff." ... Cessna: "Cleared for takeoff, Cessna 123." ... Tower: "Cessna 123, also: Turn left, heading 210." ... Cessna: "You want that after we takeoff, right?" ... Tower: "Yes, that would be best." ... I could barely read back our taxi-off clearance. We and tower were laughing too hard. -- Jay G. More

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ATC: "Citation N1234, climb via the SID, but do not exceed 200 knots." ... Citation N1234: "Roger. Climb via the SID; do not exceed 200 knots." ... [A few moments pass.] ... ATC: "Citation N1234, resume normal speed." ... Citation N1234: "This IS our normal speed!" -- Brian Conway More

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A few years ago, I flew into RDU really late at night to drop off a couple of folks. On the way out, taxiing down to 5R, ground control called out. ... Ground Control: "Twin Cessna, where are you going?" ... Me: "To 5R." ... Ground Control: "You were cleared to 5L." ... Me: "Would you like me to do a 180 and go to 5L?" ... Ground Control: "Go ahead and do a 360 and proceed to 5R." ... I continued but left out the turn! -- Michael K. More

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I just now heard this while listening to the McKinney, Texas (KTKI) tower: ... N1234: "McKinney Tower, N1234 is 10 east, inbound at 2,500 for touch-and-goes." ... Tower: "N1234, ident." ... N1234: "Ahhh. Uh. I am about 10 east at 2,500; heading: 270 a red-and-white Cessna 172." ... Tower: "N1234, just press the 'ident' button on your transponder please." ... N1234: "Oh, O. K." -- Ron Dawes More

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Back in the late '90s, as a radio operator on MC-130E Combat Talons, I was returning to EGI from the East Coast. ... As I neared home, the pilot asked: "R. O., see if we can get lower." ... I asked ATC for lower, as directed by the pilot. The kind folks at ATC denied our request. ... The pilot was not happy, but, as we maintained altitude, I heard one crewmember ask why they denied us. ... To which I replied: "Just another case of The Man keeping us up." ... I got silence from the crew, but giggles could be heard off mic. -- Steve More

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Going through Air Force pilot training at what was Williams Air Force Base (now Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport), we used tactical call signs for our training flights, and one of those was "Foe." ... The numeric portion of the call sign was determined by the last two digits (minutes) of your scheduled takeoff time. One day, a good old boy from Georgia was the lead pilot for a four-ship training mission of T-38s scheduled to take off at 44 minutes past the hour. ... You can imagine what it sounded like in his Southern drawl when he called: "Willy Tower, this is Foe 4-4 with four for takeoff." -- Rich Martindell More

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Heard over north central Florida: ... Cirrus 123CD: "Jacksonville Center, Cirrus 123CD. 5,000." ... Jacksonville Approach: "Mooney 123CD, altimeter 30.05. Fly heading 220." ... [no reply] ... Jacksonville Approach: "Mooney 123CD, fly heading 220." ... Cirrus 123CD: "Sir, was that for 123CD? Because you keep calling us a Mooney, but we are a Cirrus." ... Jacksonville Approach: "Well, if you keep calling me 'Center,' I'm going to keep calling you a Mooney." ... Later in the flight, when Jax handed us off to the tower: ... Me: "Going to the tower. Thanks for all the help today, 'Center.'" ... [pause] ... Jacksonville Approach: "Ouch!" -- Bradley Spatz More

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In 2009, I was making multiple flights around the southeast U.S. and landed in Columbia, South Carolina at Columbia Downtown Airport (KCUB) on multiple occasions for business. The runway at KCUB is parallel and adjacent to an active railyard. ... After contacting the KCUB tower for my IFR departure clearance on a clear VFR day, the controller came back with a strong southern drawl: "1234V, cleared for departure, runway 31. Verify you can maintain train clearance." ... I said puzzled: "Say again, Columbia tower?" ... The controller repeated: "1234V, verify you can maintain train clearance." ... I puzzled over that for a few moments and replied: "I'm sorry. I don't understand your request." ... The controller, now a little frustrated, said: "1234V, can you avoid hitting the buildings and the trees?" ... I replied: "Ohhhh. 'Maintain terrain clearance.' Yes, I can maintain terrain clearance!" ... The controller resonded: "1234V, cleared for takeoff, runway 31. Have a good day!" -- Robert Jones More

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On a training flight between Terre Haute, Indiana and Indianapolis, Indiana, I heard the following exchange between Hulman (Terre Haute) Approach and a Cessna 172 requesting flight following: ... N12345: "Are you enjoying your Saturday?" ... Hulman Approach: "Negative. I'm at work." -- John Sutherland More