Saturday, December 29, 2012

For The 5th Time

This late afternoon, an early rainy and icy New York City evening, I finished my fifth reading of the aviation thriller "Flight For Control".

It came to no surprise once again that I had to wash my face off from a fresh tear especially after Jackie was reunited with Chris, and Kathryn wished him condolences on the loss of his father - an exact image he was. And the happy ending of Darby.

And yes, Karlene, you are very write and true to your words:

With each reading, getting better and better...!

Looking forward to many, many more reads..


Friday, December 28, 2012


Here's to a new year of new and endless opportunities, much success, and health to everyone!


(Taken at the NYC Tourism Bureau at Times Square)

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

A Holiday Card For You

Wishing each and everyone of your families a holiday filled with peace and happiness and a New Year filled with health and prosperity.


Sunday, December 23, 2012

Ron Carlisle

Menorah with Dad's Memorial Candle
It seems only yesterday that the holidays of 2011 were here and that the ending Saturday of that December was here.  I had finished my usual Sabbath observance when I called to return my mother's voicemail that was left.  I had a feeling that something was amiss as I saw that I had a Facebook notification from a family friend that I hadn't heard from in years.  (Thank God I didn't get the message then.)  My mother's three words "Dad passed away" have been echoing through my brain for the past year.

Captain Ron Carlisle was a person who I had the pleasure of sharing thirty-four years of my life with.  Even though I was unable to connect with him on certain levels, I was able to find areas to make those connections. 

He was born Ronald Gene Carlisle in Evansville, Indiana on August 7th, 1949 and was raised both there and in Kentucky where he enjoyed his summers on Kentucky Lake boating, fishing, and camping.  He graduated HS in 1967 and attended the University of Evansville for a short period of time before entering the United States Air Force.  

Upon entering the USAF, he was assigned to SAC (Strategic Air Command) being a technician for the ICBM (Intercontinental Ballistic Missile) Titian II Missiles.  Being that I had and still have a fascination with thermonuclear physics to a degree, I was very interested in what he had to tell me about his experiences and distinctly remembering him downloading a movies about them off the internet later in life.  Of course, I couldn't forget the wall posters.

After he married my mother and my brother and I came into the world, I remember him being a hard worker and a great provider for our family.  I say this because that would have sufficed for me but my father did so much more for us than just provided our basic needs.  Being a member of the telecommunications industry for over 28 years, he took our family ijn our white suburban across the Midwestern United States, sometimes on his business trips.  I have very fond memories of our camping trips to both Kentucky Lake and the lakes of Southern Illinois and Missouri.  We also traveled to many other places across the eastern U.S.  One thing out of all I fondly remember is listening to the oldies stations traveling the interstates listening to music that he grew up listening to.


My father was a musician par excellence.  He played twelve string guitar (and electric for that matter) amongst many other talents.  I accredit most of my music talents to him, especially playing music by having listened to something only once or twice over the radio.  Growing up, he played in some bands and loved collecting guitars.  And trust me, he did till his last days..

THE NORTHWEST ERA (Our Main Connecting Flight)

Once my dad transferred to Michigan as a digital cable engineer, he started flying out of our home airport at the time (Midland/Bay City/Saginaw) MBS through Detroit on many business trips and Northwest Airlines was the main carrier at the time.  I remember connecting with him on one of our loves - Aviation as he would always tell me his experiences in the air not only with TWA but with NWA.  

One story that stuck out in my mind was where he was sitting next to an unaccompanied minor during meal time (Back when meals used to be served in domestic) and he helped the little girl cut her meat up.  So many other stories filled my mind up and after my Amsterdam trips on the 747 in June of 1996, I had a lot to share with him in return about our airline - NWA.  

My father reached Platinum on the WorldPerks scale and one of the greatest things my father could have ever done for me was to give me miles to fly where I wanted to visit friends.  I ended up using those miles to move to either Seattle or NYC to start my life where I always wanted.  In a large, or big city pursuing my dreams and leading an independent life.  

For that I will always be greatful...

Not only did my father enjoy flying but he also enjoyed his passion - sailing..  

We had our sailboat in Bay City, Michigan and even though I was not there for most of the trips, I was there for one with a short sailing out in Saginaw Bay (Lake Huron)  Photos tell the story of the many trips that my mother and he took along with my brother.


"Captain" was eventually attached to his name and it fit all too well for many reasons.

WHY ""?

The URL to this website is also a tribute to my father's life, what he was, how he raised me to who I am today, and to show that he will always be an inspiration as to what I will become, G-d willing.  Our website is also decked out in purple as it was his favorite color.  A color of royalty, bravery, and so many other qualities that he possessed.

For those of you who had the pleasure and honor of knowing my father, you knew what a brilliant person he was.  For those who never had the chance to meet my father, you would have loved him as much as he would have loved you.

I will close this post by the following poem that was recited on his behalf.  

You can shed tears that he is gone
Or you can smile because he has lived

You can close your eyes and pray that he will come back
Or you
can open your eyes and see all that he has left

Your heart can be empty because you can't see him
Or you can be full of the love that you shared

You can turn your back on tomorrow and live yesterday
Or you can be happy for tomorrow because of yesterday

You can remember him and only that he is gone
Or you can cherish his memory and let it live on

You can cry and close your mind, be empty and turn your back
Or you can do what he would want: smile, open your eyes, love and go on.

Never take someone else's life for granted, family or not.

07 AUGUST 1949 - 23 DECEMBER 2011

Monday, December 17, 2012

Hanukkah 5773 (2012)

Religion is one of those taboo topics on the flight deck. However, this time of year, it is hard to keep back from exposing one's religious beliefs due to the festiveness of the season.  For those who are not religious and love the secular side of the celebrations, you will also not feel like a stranger.  The holidays of December are for everyone.

My background is that of a multi-denominational (to say the least) and multi-religious family so I have been exposed to many things in my lifetime and still being exposed to them.  Especially different communities and the way things are done differently.

The magic of it all, is that communities find a way to find a common ground to come together to celebrate each of their respective holidays.  Sometimes it's hard in some cases and unfortunately, it takes a loosing someone or a tragedy like Sandy Hook Elementary School to unfortunately bring families, if not communities, together.  We must remember, and perhaps the story of Hanukkah will teach everyone, a lesson: tragic times bring opposite outcomes.  

We don't understand why things happen.  They do.  And they are for the best.  It's hard but we must accept it.  That is how we commemorate the memory of those lost.  And yes, I lost someone dear to me who I will be writing about in a few days.  I felt so unworthy of myself after hearing the news events during the remembrance of my father because I had a chance to say goodbye to him.  The parents and loved ones of the teachers and students at Sandy Hook Elementary did not.

In Jewish and many other traditions, the light of a candle represents a person's soul.  This is used as a vestibule in keeping a person's memory alive.  I will now shed my light out amidst all of the events to give comfort and piece of mind to everyone: there is joy even in times of sadness.

A game played during Hanukkah

Removable gel decorations for the windows.  This is more of a recent invention for Hanukkah.

My Menorah at Home

Night #3

4th Night
(Unfortunately I should've waited until 12:12 to snap the shot.)

Last Night (8th Night) 
Dad's Memorial Candle Still Going
(He passed away last year on the Sabbath during Hanukkah.  This year is the first year anniversary which I will be writing about next week.)

Hanukkah Party (5th Night)
by some friends
and yes.. Princess had latkes too.

Even though it is customary to use olive oil to light the flames with, some choose candles over oil.  Both are valid methods of lighting the menorah.

Traditional Foods

Yes, I had my fare share of latkes this year and being that I detest jelly doughnuts, I'll settle for a little red velvet and peppermint and/or cream cheese drizzle.  An extra large mint hot chocolate to go with...

The Gifts
 Yes.... After a huge fight between the Boeing Store and UPS they finally arrived:

The key chain not only to the world's most awesome airplane, but also to success (along with hard work.)

A jacket fit for a 777/87 Pilot
less alone a Cessna

This also came in the mail during Hanukkah.  Some reading before Flight For Safety comes out.  Always supporting outstanding authors.

I started these photos out with a dreidel and will end with it. 


The Hebrew letters (right to left) Nun and Gimmel.  They stand for "Ness Gadol" (A great miracle)

Even though our lives spin out of control, we will never know how they will land.  And on which letter or note.  But we have to know that miracles do happen.  Just like the story of Hanukkah.  And that even though tragedy hits during our lifetimes, we must accept it.  For that, the souls of our missing loved ones will soar with wings of angels to the highest levels in the heavens above.

Wishing you all a Happy Holiday Season!
(more to come)