Air-Conditioning Appreciation Days on July, 2023: Conditioning Appreciation Days - air traffic controller questions?
July, 2023 is Air-Conditioning Appreciation Days 2023. Happy 4th of July Weekend! July 1, 2 & 3~ in Main Discussion Board ... Air Conditioning Day~
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I became interested in ATC by chance. When I was in high school, I wanted to become a physicians assistant but the schooling for that was limited to a few very expensive colleges at that time. My parents said they wouldn't pay that much for college so I enlisted in the Air Force to help pay the way. When I went to process in, I was looking for medical jobs to build a knowledge base for my expected career path. The Air Force told me, " We don't have many jobs like that available, if you want medical you should join the Army." They also told me my scores were high enough that they would rather place me in a job skill that would be more challenging for me. So I took the tests to become a Linguist. That was the toughest test I've ever taken in my life and failed the test by 4%. To this day I still don't know how I even scored that close :P Finally, the in-processing people suggested ATC. Being exhausted from a day of testing, I just said, "Sure."
I didn't even know what they did, neither did anyone at home. As luck has it, the more I studied and practice controlling, I loved it. At first, I loved it for reasons most probably wouldn't expect. I loved it because I worked in air conditioning in the military:P I loved watching the different aircraft from the tower. I enjoyed the challenge of radar. Finally, I loved the power-trip I got. Me, a 20 year old, was the decision maker. I called the shots. I made the decisions and people on the other end of the mic followed my lead.
Now, after being involved with ATC for 8 years, I have a different appreciation for ATC. I am no longer in the military. Now I work at one of the busiest TRACONs in the country. Now my enjoyment isn't based on petty things like power. Today, I am proud of the service I provide. I am proud I still serve my country as a public servant. I am proud to have a career where my voice keeps the populace safe. When I got out of the Air Force, I worked as a repo-man, factory worker, and a cardboard plant. I know that most of America has jobs where they are just another body filling a hole. I am not. My mind is my valuable asset and my skills make a difference. No day here is the same as any other; for that flexibility I am thankful.
What three strengths do I possess that I feel are assets to my job? First is the ability to stay calm and collected under stress. Even when things are going horribly wrong, the show must go on. I just recently had a day where someone crashed and died while I was working a busy position. Minutes later pilots were telling me they were picking up emergency locator beacon tones over his last position and I knew in my mind he went down. ( I wasn't responsible for this accident, but it haunts you none-the-less when someone dies under your care) There was no time for me to second guess or worry. I had a lot of other people that depended on me to maintain the proper mind set and focus on my duties. Being able to patiently accept the stress and work without awknowledging it is a key strength.
Secondly, being flexible is important. Despite the description of my job, control is ultimately an illusion. No one is even in control of all the variables. Something is always going to go wrong. You must be flexible in this job and not be jostled when something doesn't go as planned. You must constantly make a plan, execute a decision, then re-evaluate. This cycle is repeated continuously the entire time you work aircraft. Several times a minute. Occasionally this cycle will need to be repeated every few seconds as your mind gathers more information to re-evaluate a decision you made.
Lastly, I would say dedication. It perhaps takes an inside few to fully appreciate this comment but being dedicated to your craft really makes the difference. I'm a dedicated to what I do. I believe that the pilots operating in my airspace are my customers and deserve the best service I can provide them. I am dedicated to keep myself engaged in my traffic even when traffic conditions are slow. I am dedicated to further improving myself. There are controllers that sit on their achievements and become closed off to criticism. I try not to get "comfortable" with my skills. There is always more I can understand and learn, but it takes effort to develop those skills further.
I will add one more, because this topic has been brought up a lot with fellow controllers. It isn't intelligence that makes someone a good controller. There have been plenty of people with PHDs in other fields, even know of a physicist that failed to make it an air traffic controller. There are other intangible qualities that makes someone successful in air traffic control. One of the most important, however, is the ability to pay attention to details. I think this is a phrase that has become so over-used that everyone expects that they already possess it. The ability to pay attention to details is teste
MEN ONLY! Please tell me, if your wife worked a 30 hour a week job, WOuld you help out more??
I think maybe you should consider switching jobs for a week. It sounds like maybe you are both having difficulty appreciating one another. Welding isn't just a physically demanding job. There are a lot of things that you need to know. If you think that just because he's a welder he has no brain then maybe you need to show some interest and try to learn more about what it is that he does all day at work. I don't want to say too much about it but It does piss me off when people tell me "Yeah but my job is mentally stressful." I am a machinist. I have an air conditioned job. It is only the second A/C job that I have found in 20 years of machining. I have worked jobs that when I got home from work I didn't make it to the couch. I was so exhausted that I passed out just inside the front door. Considering that people like me do all the lackluster work that makes the world go round. I think we deserve a little more appreciation considering our paychecks don't reflect any. And don't ever get the idea that machinists and welders don't have to use their brains. I currently machine aircraft parts. If you think I don't have to take my job seriously you're crazy. Welders also do welding on some of the assemblies. There are seriously complicated requirements that must be met.
Now I got that out so back to appreciation. He needs to know how much work you do around the house. And then he needs to appreciate it. When people put themselves in the other persons shoes they get a perspective of the other person's experiences. If you could both begin to feel the other person's pain your atitude would probably change from one of resentment to one of wanting to help. Which is what your question is all about. Don't resent the things that he does. Try to go the extra mile. Once he sees how much more you are doing he might start feeling a little guilty and decide on his own that he needs to get off his ass and help. But if you approach him with an attitude of resenting him it will only create hostility. And I have noticed that hostile people are usually not very helpful. I sincerely hopes this helps you out. And everyone remember the blue collar guys out there working in the heat, building the countries infrastructure, and thinking about your safety. Blue Collars may not run the world but we make every single thing that you use. BTW you aren't askin too much of him. He still needs to help.
Australians, have you ever gone outback and how would you make the most of it?
yes I have done a lot of outback
to make the most of it this is how I survived
oh and it helps if you really love your husband or you would not be there
absolutely must drive a V8 with cruise control and air conditioning
lots of good on the road music and doing the outback slim dusty is always appropriate
and golden oldies that you know the words to also is good
food well you really have to stick to pubs and make the most of what is to offer
oh and try not to get int a blue with the local lads
other than pubs well road houses where the big trucks pull in is always a good indication
and if you are a coffee or capucino drinker forget it they make it out of an industrial sized can of caterers instant el cheapo coffee and then make a big fuss of frothing milk to turn it into the outback verstion of a capucino... learn to drink milkshakes instead
essential to sanity survival is maintain sense of humor and appreciation or irony at all times
sense of humor sometimes did desert me...
whilst out the the far out outback of qld on wedding anniversary day lets go for lunch nearest at that time road house and instead of my usual toasted cheese/tomato think oh lets live it up and order fish chips salad... burst into tears... all the salad came out of a can...!!!
another time in a small hick dot of a place in the never nevers went to the only place open and went into such deep chronic culture shock had a major panic attack... burst into tears... husband leads me to the car outside and a couple of local girls very nicely got concerned is everything alright they ask... husband just nods fine thanks...