Babes Maj and Barb, Having a Bad Plane Day

Bad Plane Day

Believe me, we are all serious pilots.

It was started by a bunch of middle-aged broads (we're all in our 40s) who recently started flying in reaction to the collective "mid-life crisis." (If we were guys, we'd probably be driving red Porsches.) We are in this for fun, not for a career change.

The name "Babes and Airplanes" came from a long-ago posting on the AOPA website message boards by an ATP (commercial airline pilot) named Ralph, who wanted to know where he could get pictures of "good-lookin' babes and airplanes." We jumped all over him!!! How rude and sexist!!! Through us gals blabbing and joking with each other, and picking on poor Ralph, we became pals and eventually decided to take the name on for ourselves.

Through the AOPA message boards, this original group of five or six people has grown to many. Both women and men. Both younger and older. From Mexico to Alaska, from the Pacific to the Atlantic. The only prerequisite is that you must have a sense of humor. We're famous for sacrificing chickens to the checkride and weather gods. We also dream about the ideal plane, which would, of course, have a hot tub in the back. Since most pilots are men (only six percent are gals) the gal babes in the group try to coerce the "wives" into becoming pilots themselves. Our goal is to increase the current 6% female pilot population to at least 6.005% by the year 2000.

As a group of pilots we ABSOLUTELY believe in being serious and safe. Because we are all fairly new pilots we continuously encourage each other to really learn how to fly. (The Private certificate is a license to learn.) Because we live in different states, we rendezvous in new places each time we fly, always a learning experience. And, we always leave a copy of the above, "Bad Plane Day" picture on the bulletin boards of the FBO's we stop at, and on the sides of cash registers at the restaurants where we eat.(BTW, no, we didn't break it, just stumbled across it. It's all better now and back in the air.)

We may take our flying seriously, but we also have a lot of fun.

BabeLore and other Duck Details

The Gospel according to Mark

The Gods

These come in two different flavors: Checkride and Weather

These gods control the lives of Babes and others and must be worshiped and have sacrifices made theretofore upon to asunder.

The Checkride God is fickle and at a whim can dash the hopes and dreams of a fledgling Babe. On the night preceeding a babe facing the dreaded DE (son of Checkride God), the faithful must sacrifice a chicken, whilst raising a glass of Merlot to praise the CRG. If the sacrifice was successful, another duckie is born.

The WeatherGod is known to all who fly as devious and cunning, waiting to smite the best laid BabePlans, and therefore must be honored above all. The Weathergod's teachings (from the Books of CIRRUS and DUATS and FSS) must be heeded above all else. For this reason, constant sacrifices of chicken, and duck, and flamingo, and frog (but never snakes) must be made. For three days preceeding FLYOVER, the faithful must sacrifice all forms of fowl, both feathered and stuffed, lest ceilings lower, winds howl, and visabilities decline.

The Duck

In the beginning, the Founding Babes needed to make a sacrifice and were sent forth throughout the land to find an appropriate fowl. One unnamed Babe, seeking the Holy Rubber Chicken, was unable to find such a beast, and settled upon a rubber duckie, hence forth to be known throughout the land as the Alpha Duck, who was thence cast upon the waters of Hot Tub and sent forth to begat. It was decreed that Dave the Duckman should be the keeper and when a new Student Babe was born, a baby duckie was to be given to celebrate a first solo, and whence a new Pilot Babe was born (or a new rating bestowed) a direct Alpha Duck descendent should be given and celebrated.

As protection against all evil, said duckie should ride proudly on the glareshield as protection for the Babe and when on the ground, the duckie shall serve as a sign to all that herein lives a True Babe. Also, all duckies should come once a year in Mecca (OSH) to hot tub parties to partake in flying lessons, lest they forget their purpose in life.

The Frog

Once upon a time, a certain Neander, known to some as Rick, spake foul of all things P.C. and femaleish. Know to cavort with Midwestern Cows, this one established new lows in the testosterone poisoned species and as knuckles dragged lower and lower upon the ground, a reversion took place as it slithered back into the slime to thence again become a frog. Spending much time in hot water, the frog was eventually joined by others, spending their time in the frog pot, being roasted slowly by the testosterone challenged. His offspring have been, on occassion, sacrificed in the form of a frog legs dinner, following a severe pithing.

The FrogHouse

If the "PC" envelope is pushed to the max or general consideration for the other gender, um, princess, is not up to "General Princess Operating Standards" the offending "frog" is banished to the doghouse which was renamed "The FrogHouse." The froghouse has since become a safehaven for frogs who like to push the sensibility envelope just far enough to make a "Princess" snap. Between the help of legions of others was well as Dad, LeapFrog, Dave and I, we made quite place for ourselves with a Coors cured couch, a voluminous refrigerator, and the TV Remote of Honor.
Flash, Frog Jr., OotG

Notes from Razor:

Saturday 25 March 2006, 12:15pm Class title: "How to Cook Bulk Frog Legs" Description and Materials: Will use live frogs (you may bring your own) to start this delightful dish. Will use handy meat cleavers and sharp knives for pithing and dismembering.

Saturday 25 March 2006, 3:45pm Class title: "How to Sew a Frog's Lips Shut" Description and Materials: Using yarn needles and 300-lb fishing line, you'll learn the best way to keep irrelevant chatter from affecting you ever again. The technique can also be used to sew a frog's fingers together to prevent keyboard outbursts. Practice frogs will be provided, however you may feel free to bring your own.

So, Dave, which class would you like to attend with me?

The Snake

The snake, known as Viper, has risen above the slime and goo of Frogdom, to a new level of goodness and mercy. BTW, that whole apple thing was blown way out of proportion by the media and was just a result of a simple misunderstanding and some bad press.


The highest rank a knuckle dragging Neander can attain. After many year of servitude, perhaps a very few can reach the rank of BIC (Babe in Command) of a mission. After many missions, much groveling, worshipping of the Estrogen Enhanced, and only at a large gathering of the Babes, Lady M & M may see fit to bestow the coveted honor of OOTG - One of the Girls. Many have tried, few have succeeded.......

So spaketh the Webdaddy...Go forth and be fruitful and multiply

How do I become a Babe?

Stick your arms straight out at your sides, spin around 3 times while making airplane noises with your mouth.. send me a picture of yourself with a plane (or without if you don't have one with) and keep the spirit and love of GA alive... spread the word.
- Barbara

If you are somewhat embarassed at the idea of 'sticking your arms out, spinning around 3 times, and making airplane noises', that's OK. To make it easier, have a large meal with wine (Merlot is recommended). Eat and drink a bit more than you should. Have another glass. By now you probably won't care what those ground-gripping non-pilots think. Proceed with the initiation ceremony prescribed by Barbara.

These preparations will not harm your standing with the Babes; in fact, they will enhance it.

Welcome aboard.


Being a fringe member of the Babes (being married, over 50, living in IA, and STILL working on my IFR), I can only reflect on an early December evening in St. Charles, IL that I spent with Maj. Maj proved a great dinner companion because we couldn't bore each other with pilot and plane talk. I am impressed with her flying skills and her dedication to improving them. The founding of Babes as an option to the 99's means no dues, spontaneity, and a lot of laughs. There aren't many of us women private pilots anyway, at least not here in Iowa, and it's great to know we can get together to party and for mutual support. I fondly remember the last time I was carded (I was 28) so being a Babe isn't a handicap for me!! Besides since I learned to fly (at age 51) I have begun to feel and look younger. (Two years ago a Japanese business associate of my husband's asked him if I was 35. Sure liked that!)
- Barbara S.

Here is a testimonial for ya.
Wife wouldn't fly. Husband "talks" with the Babes. Gets hints and cooled it. Eventually, wife meets some Babes. Wife goes to ground school. Wife meets some more Babes. Wife decides to fly along more during husbands lessons. 30 degree banks and mild turb. no longer a factor. Wife starts lessons on her own. Daughter home from college this week. Flown with Father, but vehement no desire to sit up front. Daughter has lunch with mother. Daughter sees her picture on Babes website and thinks that's kinda cool. Daughter agrees to an intro flight lesson. Daughter does very well during first lesson. Daughter comes to Daddy yesterday and asks. Daddy, can I please take flying lessons too, Please Daddy?? Babes makes loan to Daddy to pay for 4 sets of lessons now :) :) :) Now if that doesn't make a believer out of you, what will. Now I guess I gotta get a picture of Mindy in the left seat so she can have her own exclusive spot on "Babes" too.
- Mark SW&BS&TW forever

As a testimonial, I'm not sure what this has to do with flying - but it sure has to do with Babes.

I am _not_ a dancing man. In fact, I'm not a dancing anything. But the babes got me out on the floor at the notorious Reading fly-in. God I'm glad no-one else I know was there!

Maxfield Parrish

"And once you have tasted flight you will walk the earth with your eyes skyward, for there you have been and there you long to return..."---Leonardo Da Vinci

"If enough of us keep trying, we'll get someplace.."--Amelia Earhart

"I wouldn't take no for an answer..."--Bessie Coleman

The story behind the "Rose with Wings"

My friend Mary died of breast cancer at the age of 37. She had a rose tatooed on her back, and just, in general, loved roses. After her death, I had an open rose tattooed above my ankle, not only in her memory, but to remind me to live each day to it's fullest...

The babes have taken that symbol and added wings to it.
- Barbara "Moxie"

We often take for granted that tomorrow will always come. People who have experienced the uncertainty and mortality of life are the ones who most appreciate the time we have here. We're the ones who notice how the sunset turns the clouds shades of orange and gold you can't get in a crayola box. We're the ones who fly so we can be closer to it, maybe reach out and grab hold of something ethereal.

...unconditional love between two people. We all want it, but we don't get it very often because it's so hard to give. I'm as guilty as anyone.

Sorrow, fear, pain, loss, are the only ways that teach you how to really live. Sounds trite, but it's true, even if it doesn't make it any easier.

Carolyn "Razor"

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All images and text copyright 1998 - 2008 Barbara "Moxie" @ Babes and Airplanes