Actual Control Tower Conversations

November 22, 1996 – Any More Complaints? The controller working a busy pattern
told the 727 on downwind to make a 360 (does a complete circle, usually done to
provide spacing between aircraft). The pilot of the 727 complained, “Do you know
it costs us two thousand dollars to make a 360 in this airplane?”

Without missing a beat the controller replied, “Roger, give me four thousand
dollars worth.”
November 15, 1996 – What the…?! PSA was following United, taxiing out for
departure. PSA called the tower and said “Tower, this is United 586. We’ve got a
little problem, so go ahead and let PSA go first.”

The tower promptly cleared PSA for takeoff before United had a chance to
object to the impersonation.
November 8, 1996 – Which Exit Did You Say That Was? A DC-10 had an exceedingly
long landing rollout after landing with his approach speed just a little too
high…San Jose

Tower: “American 751 Heavy, turn right at the end if able. If not able, take
the Guadalupe exit off of Highway 101 back to the airport.”
November 1, 1996 – Ouch! Western Airlines had a term for its second officers.
The term was “GIB,” and stood for “Guy In Back.” The term was strictly
unofficial and was actually frowned upon by the management at Western. It seems
that some wise-guy pilot had been browsing through a dictionary and had made the
discovery that a “gib” is a castrated tomcat.
October 11, 1996 – What Is That Thing? It was a really nice day, right about
dusk, and a Piper Malibu was being vectored into a long line of airliners in
order to land at Kansas City…

KC Approach: “Malibu three-two-Charlie, you’re following a 727, one o’clock
and three miles.

“Three-two-Charlie: “We’ve got him. We’ll follow him.”

KC Approach: “Delta 105, your traffic to follow is a Malibu, eleven o’clock
and three miles. Do you have that traffic?

“Delta 105: (long pause and then in a thick southern drawl) “Well… I’ve got
something down there. Can’t quite tell if it’s a Malibu or a Chevelle, though.”
September 6, 1996 – Mmmm-mmm, Good! Tower: “Eastern 702, cleared for takeoff,
contact Departure on 124.7.”

Eastern 702: “Tower, Eastern 702 switching to Departure… by the way, as we
lifted off, we saw some kind of dead animal on the far end of the runway.”

Tower: “Continental 635, cleared for takeoff, contact Departure on 124.7…
Did you copy the report from Eastern?”

Continental 635: “Continental 635 cleared for takeoff… and yes, we copied
Eastern and we’ve already notified our caterers.”
June 28, 1996 – No, That’s not what I Said! O’Hare Approach Control: “United
329, traffic is a Fokker, one o’clock, 3 miles, eastbound.”

United 329: “Approach, I’ve always wanted to say this… I’ve got that Fokker
in sight.”

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