Ready Immediate?

Seems that Tom was a trainee controller with a nervous instructor watching over his shoulder. He had one air carrier jet just touching down and another on a mile final, with a commuter holding short for departure release.

"I'm going to get that commuter out between those two jets," said Tom aloud. The instructor could see that there might just *barely* enough time to make it work if nobody screwed up. But like any good instructor, she wanted to let Tom make his own mistakes since that's the only way for a guy to learn. Still, the instructor couldn't help but mumble in Tom's ear, "If this works, Tom, it'll be a miracle!"

Tom keys his transmitter. He intends to say "Commuter 123, taxi into position and hold, be ready for immediate." What actually comes out of his mouth (in one of the great Freudian slips of all time) is: "Commuter 123, taxi into position and hold, be ready for a miracle."

There's a pregnant pause on frequency, and the then commuter pilot says, "Tower, I think under the circumstances we'd better just hold short. I don't feel quite that lucky."

Back to PSTAR Section 10 - Clearances and Instructions

This page written 3 July 2003 by Robyn Stewart.