The Magic And Wonder Of Early Flight

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  1. The Boeing 747: The plane that shrank the world
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  4. Early Years Gallery

We turn from the lights of the city; we pivot on a dark wing; we roar over the earth. The plane seems exultant now, even arrogant. We did it, we did it! We were dependant on you just now, prisoners fawning on you for favors, for wind and light. But now, we are free. We are up; we are off.

We can toss you aside, for we are above it. I had never cared about flying, and in fact had only once been up in the air; although I do a great deal of motor-boat and car racing, I had always been afraid of flying. I used to tell my friends that I should never fly and that sometimes I even hated butterflies, or anything with wings, and that it actually made me dizzy to look at my own foot. That was my outlook so far as flying was concerned until this day when I spied the little machine in that shop window. Every flyer who ventures across oceans to distant lands is a potential explorer; in his or her breast burns the same fire that urged the adventurers of old to set forth in their sailing-ships for foreign lands.

Riding through the air on silver wings instead of sailing the seas with white wings, he must steer his own course, for the air is uncharted, and he must therefore explore for himself the strange eddies and currents of the ever-changing sky in its many moods. Travelers are always discoverers, especially those who travel by air. There are no signposts in the air to show a man has passed that way before.

There are no channels marked. The flier breaks each second into new uncharted seas. I have lifted my plane … for perhaps a thousand flights and I have never felt her wheels glide from the Earth into the air without knowing the uncertainty and the exhilaration of first-born adventure. It won't get you a better job, a faster car, or a bigger house. But if you treat it with respect and keep your eyes open, it may remind you of some things you used to know — that life is in the moment, joy matters more than money, the world is a beautiful place, and that dreams really, truly are possible.

It will free man from the remaining chains, the chains of gravity which still tie him to this planet. It will open to him the gates of heaven. What is it that makes a man willing to sit up on top of an enormous Roman candle, such as a Redstone, Atlas, Titan or Saturn rocket, and wait for someone to light the fuse?

It was quite a day. I don't know what you can say about a day when you see four beautiful sunsets…. This is a little unusual, I think. As you pass from sunlight into darkness and back again every hour and a half, you become startlingly aware how artificial are thousands of boundaries we've created to separate and define. And for the first time in your life you feel in your gut the precious unity of the Earth and all the living things it supports.

Father, we thank you, especially for letting me fly this flight — for the privilege of being able to be in this position, to be in this wondrous place, seeing all these many startling, wonderful things that you have created. Today gives us a chance to love, to work, to play, and to look up at the stars. For my part I know nothing with any certainty but the sight of the stars makes me dream.

The stars are the apexes of what wonderful triangles! What distant and different beings in the various mansions of the universe are contemplating the same one at the same moment!


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  • Aviation Quotes The Magic And Wonder Of Flight.
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Do there exist many worlds, or is there but a single world? This is one of the most noble and exalted questions in the study of Nature. For everyone … must see that astronomy compels the soul to look upwards and leads us from this world to another. Many discoveries are reserved for ages still to come …. Our universe is a sorry little affair unless it has in it something for every age to investigate. In the press grandstand where I watched Discovery rise against the cloudless sky, the media hit the abort button on cynicism.

The Earth shook to the sounds of man, three miles away. The candle lit… only someone stripped of awe can leave a launch untouched. And there is a Catskill eagle in some souls that can alike dive down into the blackest gorges, and soar out of them again and become invisible in the sunny spaces. And even if he for ever flies within the gorge, that gorge is in the mountains; so that even in his lowest swoop the mountain eagle is still higher than other birds upon the plain, even though they soar.

Nothing ever built arose to touch the skies unless some man dreamed that it should, some man believed that it could, and some man willed that it must. To most people, the sky is the limit. To those who love aviation, the sky is home. If you are a woman, and are coming to the flying field seeking stimulation, excitement and flattery, you had better stay away until flying is a little bit safer. If you are thinking that flying will develop character; will teach you to be orderly, well-balanced; will give you an increasingly wider outlook; discipline you, and destroy vanity and pride; enable you to control yourself more and more under all conditions; to think less of yourself and your personal problems, and more of sublimity and everlasting peace that dwell serene in the heavens - if you seek these latter qualities, and think on them exclusively, why - FLY!

I learned to watch, to put my trust in other hands than mine. I learned to wander. I learned what every dreaming child needs to know — that no horizon is so far that you cannot get above it or beyond it. These I learned at once. But most things come harder. What happiness this is: to fly, skimming over the earth just as we do in our dreams! Life has become a dream.

Can this be the meaning of paradise? Anyone who's not interested in model airplanes must have a screw loose somewhere. But to fly is just like swimming. You do not forget easily. I have been on the ground for more than ten years. If I close my eyes, however, I can again feel the stick in my right hand, the throttle in my left, the rudder bar beneath my feet. I can sense the freedom and the cleanliness and all the things which a pilot knows.

Japan's greatest living ace with 64 kills, who was banned from flying at the end of W. From the foreword to Samurai! How do you know but ev'ry Bird that cuts the airy way, Is an immense world of delight, clos'd by your senses five? Anyone who has spent any time in space will love it for the rest of their lives. I achieved my childhood dream of the sky. Whether outwardly or inwardly, whether in space or time, the farther we penetrate the unknown, the vaster and more marvelous it becomes.

Lindbergh, Autobiography of Values. How detached the intimate things around me seem from the great world down below. How strange is this combination of proximity and separation. That ground — seconds away — thousands of miles away. This air, stirring mildly around me. That air, rushing by with the speed of a tornado, an inch beyond.

The Boeing 747: The plane that shrank the world

These minute details in my cockpit. The grandeur of the world outside. The nearness of death. The longness of life. Lindbergh, ' The Spirit of St. A small machine is ideal for short flights, joy riding the heavens, or sight seeing among the clouds; but there is something more majestic and stable about the big bombers which a pilot begins to love. An exquisite community grows up between machine and pilot; each, as it were, merges into the other. The machine is rudimentary and the pilot the intellectual force. The levers and controls are the nervous system of the machine, through which the will of the pilot may be expressed-and expressed to an infinitely fine degree.

A flying-machine is something entirely apart from and above all other contrivances of man's ingenuity. The aeroplane is the nearest thing to animate life that man has created. In the air a machine ceases indeed to be a mere piece of mechanism; it becomes animate and is capable not only of primary guidance and control, but actually of expressing a pilot's temperament. We who fly do so for the love of flying. We are alive in the air with this miracle that lies in our hands and beneath our feet.

Flying alone! Nothing gives such a sense of mastery over time over mechanism, mastery indeed over space, time, and life itself, as this. It is a huge thrill. That's really what it's like. BBC Interview 23 April It was a cherished experience.

I feel I got the chance to see the inner workings of the grand order of things. In the overall scheme of things, it proves that men can do about anything they want to if they work hard enough at it, and I knew that I could do it … and that leads, of course, to a strong suspicion that everybody else can do it if they want to. This was the crystalline moment Dan loved so well, the moment of transition between ground and air, when the laws of aerodynamics took over the job of physical support of the jet.

He'd become a pilot for this very moment: the feel of mighty engines and the roar of the slipstream, all converging on the reality of sustained flight on an invisible highway of air. Flying was a thrill in even a single-engine airplane, but to levitate a leviathan — a metallic eggshell longer than a football field and heavier than a house — was a magic he could never quite comprehend.

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Every liftoff was a philosophical wonder that left a broad smile on his face. Nance, Blackout , How long can men thrive between walls of brick, walking on asphalt pavements, breathing the fumes of coal and of oil, growing, working, dying, with hardly a thought of wind, and sky, and fields of grain, seeing only machine-made beauty, the mineral-like quality of life?

Pilots are a rare kind of human. They leave the ordinary surface of the word, to purify their soul in the sky, and they come down to earth, only after receiving the communion of the infinite. Until now I have never really lived! Life on earth is a creeping, crawling business. It is in the air that one feels the glory of being a man and of conquering the elements. There is an exquisite smoothness of motion and the joy of gliding through space.

It is wonderful! Flying has always been to me this wonderful metaphor. In order to fly you have to trust what you can't see. Up on the mountain ridges where very few people have been I have thought back to what every flyer knows. That there is this special world in which we dwell that's not marked by boundaries, it's not a map.

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So often in an office the very worst thing that can happen is you could drop your pencil. Out there's a reminder that are a lot worse things, and a lot greater rewards. I am alive. Up here with the song of the engine and the air whispering on my face as the sunlight and shadows play upon the banking, wheeling wings, I am completely, vibrantly alive.

With the stick in my right hand, the throttle in my left, and the rudder beneath my feet, I can savor that essence from which life is made. It's a magical feeling to climb toward the heavens, seeing objects and people on the ground grow smaller and more insignificant. You have left that world beneath you. You are inside the sky. Then it was intoxicating. The smooth takeoff, and the free feeling of having the world drop away. Soon after leaving the ground, they were crossing patches of stratus that lay in the valleys as heavy and white as glaciers. North for the first time.

It was still an adventure, as exciting as love, as frightening. He knew that we gave constant lip service to the dictates of safety and howled like Christians condemned to the arena if any compromise were made of it. He knew we were seekers after ease, suspicious, egotistic, and stubborn to a fault. He also knew that none of us would have continued our careers unless we had always been, and still were, helpless before this opportunity to take a chance. More varied than any landscape was the landscape in the sky, with islands of gold and silver, peninsulas of apricot and rose against a background of many shades of turquoise and azure.

We do not ask for what useful purpose the birds do sing, for song is their pleasure since they were created for singing. Similarly, we ought not to ask why the human mind troubles to fathom the secrets of the heavens…. The diversity of the phenomena of Nature is so great, and the treasures hidden in the heavens so rich, precisely in order that the human mind shall never be lacking in fresh nourishment.

A ship in port is safe, but that is not what ships are for. Sail out to sea and do new things. Every generation has the obligation to free men's minds for a look at new worlds, to look out from a higher plateau than the last generation. Your vision is not limited by what your eye can see, but by what your mind can imagine…. Make your life count and the world will be a better place because you tried.

I have the normal desire, experienced by everybody who's ever flown an airplane with a certain amount of zoom capability, to go a little bit higher and a little bit faster. Air racing may not be better than your wedding night, but it's better than the second night. If you have flown, perhaps you can understand the love a pilot develops for flight. It is much the same emotion a man feels for a woman, or a wife for her husband. Nowadays a businessman can go from his office straight to the airport, get into his airplane and fly six hundred or seven hundred miles without taking off his hat.

He probably will not even mention this flight, which a bare twenty-five years ago would have meant wearing leather jacket and helmet and goggles and risking his neck every minute of the way. No, he probably wouldn't mention it - except to another flier. Then they will talk for hours. They will re-create all the things seen and felt in that wonderful world of air: the sense of remoteness from the busy world below, the feeling of intense brotherhood formed with those who man the radio ranges and control towers and weather stations that bring the pilot home, the clouds and the colors, the surge of the wind on their wings.

They will speak of things that are spiritual and beautiful and of things that are practical and utilitarian; they will mix up angels and engines, sunsets and spark plugs, fraternity and frequencies in one all-encompassing comradeship of interests that makes for the best and most lasting kind of friendship any man can have.

Be like the bird in flight … pausing a while on boughs too slight, feels them give way beneath her, yet sings knowing yet, that she has wings. Flyers fell a certain kinship with the sight of the earth unencrusted by humanity, they want to see it that way in one sweeping view, in reassurance that nature still exists on her own, without a chain-link fence to hold her. Are we lost, or are we found at last? On earth we strive for our various needs, because so goes the fundamental law of man. Aloft, at least for a little while, the needs disappear.

Likewise the striving. In the thoughts of man aloft, food and evil become mixed and sometimes reversed. This is the open door to wisdom. Aloft, the earth is ancient and man is young, regardless of his numbers, for there, aloft he may reaffirm his suspicions that he may not be so very much. This is the gateway to humility.

Who is it rules me from birth to tomb? Am I but a slave destined to crawl for labor to hearth and back again? Am I but one of the living dead, or my own god set free? Here aloft, we are not lost, but found. Gann, Ernest K. Gann's Flying Circus, When we walk to the edge of all the light we have and take the step into the darkness of the unknown, we must believe that one of two things will happen.

There will be something solid for us to stand on or we will be taught to fly. The last of the lonely places is the sky, a trackless void where nothing lives or grows, and above it, space itself. Man may have been destined to walk upon ice or sand, or climb the mountains or take craft upon the sea. But surely he was never meant to fly? But he does, and finding out how to do it was his last great adventure. Thou art an eagle, thou doest belong to the sky and not to the earth, stretch forth thy wings and fly.

Dalbiac, Dictionary of Quotations French , Oh, that I had wings like a dove, for then would I fly away, and be at rest. The philosopher is Nature's pilot. And there you have our difference: to be in hell is to drift: to be in heaven is to steer. Long flights give you more time to reflect, look around, experience your surroundings.

I got to know the nooks and crannies on Mir very, very well. When all the world is a hopeless jumble and the raindrops tumble all around, Heaven opens a magic lane. When all the clouds darken up the skyway, there's a rainbow highway to be found, Leading from your window pane. To a place behind the sun, Just a step beyond the rain. Somewhere over the rainbow way up high, There's a land that I heard of once in a lullaby, Somewhere over the rainbow skies are blue, And the dreams that you dare to dream really do come true.

Somewhere over the rainbow bluebirds fly. Birds fly over the rainbow, why then, oh why can't I? If happy little bluebirds fly beyond the rainbow, why oh why can't I? March It is appearances, characteristics and performance that make a man love an airplane, and they, are what put emotion into one. You love a lot of things if you live around them, but there isn't any woman and there isn't any horse, nor any before nor any after, that is as lovely as a great airplane, and men who love them are faithful to them even though they leave them for others.

A man has only one virginity to lose in fighters, and if it is a lovely plane he loses it to, there his heart will ever be. You can always tell when a man has lost his soul to flying. The poor bastard is hopelessly committed to stopping whatever he is doing long enough to look up and make sure the aircraft purring overhead continues on course and does not suddenly fall out of the sky. It is also his bound duty to watch every aircraft within view take off and land. I might have been born in a hovel, but I determined to travel with the wind and the stars.

We dit it, we did it! So the crew fly on with no thought that they are in motion. Like night over the sea, they are very far from the earth, from towns, from trees.

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The clock ticks on. The dials, the radio lamps, the various hands and needles go though their invisible alchemy…. Out of oblivion the gold has been smelted: there it gleams in the lights of the airport. Flying is more than a sport and more than a job; flying is pure passion and desire, which fill a lifetime. The cockpit was my office. It was a place where I experienced many emotions and learned many lessons.

It was a place of work, but also a keeper of dreams. It was a place of deadly serious encounters, yet there I discovered much about life. I learned about joy and sorrow, pride and humility, fear and overcoming fear. I saw much from that office that most people would never see.

At times it terrified me, yet I could always feel at home there. It was my place, at that time in space, and the jet was mine for those moments. Though it was a place where I could quickly die, the cockpit was a place where I truly lived. Before I went to the Mess I made the excuse I wanted to get something out of my aeroplane, and climbed into the cockpit; I did this, however, to be able to say good-bye to the old dear; and I really felt dreadfully sorry to part with her.

I get very attached to aeroplanes, and I am one of those people who think that they aren't so inanimate as we are told they are. Whether we call it sacrifice, or poetry, or adventure, it is always the same voice that calls. Man's mind and spirit grow with the space in which they are allowed to operate. Again I felt that overpowering rush of excitement which I fond almost everyone has experienced who has seen a man fly.

It is an exhilaration, a thrill, an ecstasy. Just as children jump and clap their hands to see a kite mount, so, when the machine leaves the ground and with a soaring movement really flies upon its speeding wings, one feels impelled to shout, to rush after it, to do anything which will relieve the overcharged emotion. It becomes a spiritual experience. Something wonderful happens in the pit of your stomach. There is a thrill of vulnerability at all airshows.

There is no way of making everything completely safe. When the machines are being thrashed to capacity and the pilots are flying at their limits to dazzle, things are bound to go wrong sometimes. There have been some historic disasters, but the danger is a part of the attraction. Bit of a Blur , Be like the bird that, passing on her flight awhile on boughs too slight, feels them give way beneath her, and yet sings, knowing that she hath wings. Birds in flight, claims the architect Vincenzo Volentieri, are not between places — they carry their places with them.

We never wonder where they live: they are at home in the sky, in flight. Flight is their way of being in the world. Before take-off, a professional pilot is keen, anxious, but lest someone read his true feelings he is elaborately casual. The reason for this is that he is about to enter a new though familiar world. The process of entrance begins a short time before he leaves the ground and is completed the instant he is in the air.

From that moment on, not only his body but his spirit and personality exist in a separate world known only to himself and his comrades. As the years go by, he returns to this invisible world rather than to earth for peace and solace. There also he finds a profound enchantment, although he can seldom describe it. He can discuss it with others of his kind, and because they too know and feel its power they understand. But his attempts to communicate his feelings to his wife or other earthly confidants invariable end in failure.

Flying is hypnotic and all pilots are willing victims to the spell. Their world is like a magic island in which the factors of life and death assume their proper values. Thinking becomes clear because there are no earthly foibles or embellishments to confuse it. I began to feel that I lived on a higher plane than the skeptics of the ground; one that was richer because of its very association with the element of danger they dreaded, because it was freer of the earth to which they were bound.

In flying, I tasted a wine of the gods of which they could know nothing. Who valued life more highly, the aviators who spent it on the art they loved, or these misers who doled it out like pennies through their antlike days? I decided that if I could fly for ten years before I was killed in a crash, it would be a worthwhile trade for an ordinary life time.

I fly because it releases my mind from the tyranny of petty things. To put your life in danger from time to time Once you have learned to fly your plane, it is far less fatiguing to fly than it is to drive a car. You don't have to watch every second for cats, dogs, children, lights, road signs, ladies with baby carriages and citizens who drive out in the middle of the block against the lights. Nobody who has not been up in the sky on a glorious morning can possibly imagine the way a pilot feels in free heaven.

Piper, president of Piper Aircraft Corporation. Courage is the price that life extracts for granting peace. The soul that knows it not, knows no release from little things. The soul that knows it not knows no release from little things. Knows not the livid loneliness of fear, Nor mountain heights, where bitter joy can hear The sound of wings.

Whatever any other organism has been able to do man should surely be able to do also, though he may go a different way about it. Ours is the commencement of a flying age, and I am happy to have popped into existence at a period so interesting. From the air, the distinctions between residential, commercial, and industrial areas are easily understand while town, county, and state boundaries go unseen.

The airplane has unveiled for us the true face of the earth. The magic of the craft has opened for me a world in which I shall confront, within two hours, the black dragons and the crowned crests of a coma of blue lightnings, and when night has fallen I, delivered, shall read my course in the starts. The modern airplane creates a new geographical dimension. A navigable ocean of air blankets the whole surface of the globe. There are no distant places any longer: the world is small and the world is one. We want the air to unite the peoples, and not to divide them. Unlike the boundaries of the sea by the shorelines, the "ocean of air" laps at the border of every state, city, town and home throughout the world.

The Wright Brothers created the single greatest cultural force since the invention of writing. The airplane became the first World Wide Web, bringing people, languages, ideas, and values together. I've never known an industry that can get into people's blood the way aviation does. Maybe it's sex appeal, but there's something about an airplane that drives investors crazy. The scream of jet engines rises to a crescendo on the runways of the world. Every second, somewhere or other, a plane touches down, with a puff of smoke from scorched tyre rubber, or rises in the air, leaving a smear of black fumes dissolving in its wake.

From space, the earth might look to a fanciful eye like a huge carousel, with planes instead of horses spinning round its circumference, up and down, up and down. My senses of space, of distance, and of direction entirely vanished. When I looked for the ground I sometimes loked down, sometimes up, sometimes left, sometimes right. I thought I was very high up when I would suddenly be thown to earth in a near vertical spin. I thought I was very low to the ground and I was pulled up to 3, feet in two minutes by the horsepower motor.

It danced, it pushed, it tossed. Dad, I left my heart up there. As soon as we left the ground I knew I myself had to fly! Even before [we]. I tumbled out of the airplane with stars in my eyes. I wanted to go higher than Rockefeller Center, which was being erected across the street from Saks Fifth Avenue and was going to cut off my view of the sky.

Flying got into my soul instantly but the answer as to why must be found somewhere back in the mystic maze of my birth and childhood and the circumstances of my earlier life. Whatever I am is elemental and the beginnings of it all have their roots in Sawdust Road. I might have been born in a hovel, but I determined to travel with the wind and stars.

After about 30 minutes I puked all over my airplane. I said to my self, "Man, you made a big mistake. I've had a ball. I could have gone on flying through space forever. To invent an airplane is nothing. To build one is something. To fly is everything. Aeronautics was neither an industry nor a science. It was a miracle. It is not the visions but the activity which makes you happy, and the joy and glory of the flier is the flight itself. Every time I have gone up in an aeroplane and looked down have realized I was free of the ground, I have had the consciousness of a new discovery.

And now I understand everything. You will begin to touch heaven, Jonathan, in the moment you touch the perfect speed. And that isn't flying a thousand miles an hour, or a million, of flying at the speed of light. Because any number is a limit, and perfect speed, my son, is being there. There is no excuse for an airplane unless it will fly fast! Professor Focke and his technicians standing below grew ever smaller as I continued to rise straight up, 50 metres, 75 metres, metres.

Then I gently began to throttle back and the speed of ascent dwindled till I was hovering motionless in midair. This was intoxicating! I thought of the lark, so light and small of wing, hovering over the summer fields. Now man had wrested from him his lovely secret. Everyone asks me 'how it feels to fly. That this tiny two-seater box of metal managed to rise into the air at all felt unbelievable. Once we broke ground, it seemed as if I were floating on a magic carpet. The lightness and height made me tingle in somewhat the same way I feel aroused before making love. When I took over the controls, I felt as if I were at the center of my universe instead of orbiting someone else's.

I felt then, and still believe now, that piloting a small aircraft is about as good as it gets. I take the paraglider to the mountain or I roll Daisy out of her hangar and I pick the prettiest part of the sky and I melt into the wing and then into the air, till I'm just soul on a sunbeam.

Daisy is Richard's Cessna The engine is the heart of an aeroplane, but the pilot is its soul. High sprits they had: gravity they flouted. This is all about fun. You can grab ahold of an airplane here, and literally take your life in both hands. One for the throttle and one for the stick, and you can control your own destiny, free of most rules and regulations. It may not be better than sex, but it's definitely better than the second time. Adrenaline is a narcotic; it may be a naturally induced narcotic, but it is a narcotic.

And once you get it movin' around in there, it's a rush like none other, and when this puppy gets movin Flying without feathers is not easy; my wings have no feathers. Original, "Sine pennis volare hau facilest: meae alea pennas non habent. He rode upon a cherub, and did fly: yea, he did fly upon the wings of the wind. The reason birds can fly and we can't is simply that they have perfect faith, for to have faith is to have wings. The desire to fly is an idea handed down to us by our ancestors who, in their grueling travels across trackless lands in prehistoric times, looked enviously on the birds soaring freely through space, at full speed, above all obstacles, on the infinite highway of the air.

Real flight and dreams of flight go together. Both are part of the same movement. Not A before B, but all together. I ask people who don't fly, "How can you not fly when you live in a time in history when you can fly? It was a thunderingly beautiful experience -- voluptuous, sexual, dangerous, and expensive as hell. As you pass from sunlight into darkness and back again every hour and a half, you become startingly aware how artificial are thousands of boundaries we've created to separate and define.

And for the first time in your life you feel in your gut the precious unity of the Earth and all the living things it supports. Our passionate preoccupation with the sky, the stars, and a God somewhere in outer space is a homing impulse. We are drawn back to where we came from. Prometheus is reaching out for the stars with an empty grin on his face. Treading the soil of the moon, palpating its pebbles, tasting the panic and splendor of the event, feeling in the pit of one's stomach the separation from terra.

The utilitarian results do not interest me. But the astronauts who lost their lives on Challenger, as well as the other eight astronauts who were killed in the line of duty and the four Soviet cosmonauts who died in space serve as inspiration for us all. None of them would have wanted to give her or his life in vain.

None would have wanted us to stop striving for the stars. If anything, we must continue to preserve their dreams. We contrive to make the invisible air support us, we relinquish the security of feet on the ground because flying is demanding, delightful, beautiful: because we love it.

Very few of us are actually crazy, and nearly all of us manage the risks as well as we can, but we all willingly trade some of our security for the immeasurable beauty of the sky. No bird ever flew nonstop from New York to Tokyo, or raced 15 miles high at triple the speed of sound.

But birds do something else. They do not conquer the air; they romance it. No bird soars too high, if he soars with his own wings. Fly and you will catch the swallow. Sometimes I feel a strange exhilaration up here which seems to come from something beyond the mere stimulus of flying. It is a feeling of belonging to the sky, of owning and being owned -- if only for a moment - by the air I breathe. It is akin to the well known claim of the swallow: each bird staking out his personal bug-strewn slice of heaven, his inviolate property of the blue.

Splutter, splutter. Yes - we're off - we're rising. But why start off with an engine like that? But it smooths out now, like a long sigh, like a person breathing easily, freely. Like someone singing ecstatically, climbing, soaring - sustained note of power and joy. We turn from the lights of the city; we pivot on a dark wing; we roar over the earth. The plane seems exultant now, even arrogant. We did it, we did it! We're up, above you. We were dependant on you just now, prisoners fawning on you for favors, for wind and light.

But now, we are free. We are up; we are off. We can toss you aside, for we are above it. I had never cared about flying, and in fact had only once been up in the air; although I do a great deal of motor-boat and car racing, I had always been afraid of flying. I used to tell my friends that I should never fly and that sometimes I even hated butterflies, or anything with wings, and that it actually made me dizzy to look at my own foot. That was my outlook so far as flying was concerned until this day when I spied the little machine in that shop window. Mrs Victor Bruce Every flyer who ventures across oceans to distant lands is a potential explorer; in his or her breast burns the same fire that urged the adventurers of old to set forth in their sailing-ships for foreign lands.

Riding through the air on silver wings instead of sailing the seas with white wings, he must steer his own course, for the air is uncharted, and he must therefore explore for himself the strange eddies and currents of the ever-changing sky in its many moods. Travelers are always discoverers, especially those who travel by air. There are no signposts in the air to show a man has passed that way before. There are no channels marked. The flier breaks each second into new uncharted seas. I have lifted my plane. I'll run my hand gently over the wing of a small airplane and say to him, "This plane can teach you more things and give you more gifts than I ever could.

It won't get you a better job, a faster car, or a bigger house. But if you treat it with respect and keep your eyes open, it may remind you of some things you used to know -- that life is in the moment, joy matters more than money, the world is a beautiful place, and that dreams really, truly are possible.

Flying is within our grasp. We have naught to do but take it. I was sold on flying as soon as I had a taste for it. It will free man from the remaining chains, the chains of gravity which still tie him to this planet. It will open to him the gates of heaven. What is it that makes a man willing to sit up on top of an enormous Roman candle, such as a Redstone, Atlas, Titan or Saturn rocket, and wait for someone to light the fuse? It was quite a day. I don't know what you can say about a day when you see four beautiful sunsets. This is a little unusual, I think.

As you pass from sunlight into darkness and back again every hour and a half, you become startlingly aware how artificial are thousands of boundaries we've created to separate and define. Father, we thank you, especially for letting me fly this flight … for the privilege of being able to be in this position, to be in this wondrous place, seeing all these many startling, wonderful things that you have created.

Through you, we feel as giants, once again. In the press grandstand where I watched Discovery rise against the cloudless sky, the media hit the abort button on cynicism. The Earth shook to the sounds of man, three miles away. The candle lit. There is no flying without wings. And there is a Catskill eagle in some souls that can alike dive down into the blackest gorges, and soar out of them again and become invisible in the sunny spaces.

And even if he for ever flies within the gorge, that gorge is in the mountains; so that even in his lowest swoop the mountain eagle is still higher than other birds upon the plain, even though they soar. To most people, the sky is the limit. To those who love aviation, the sky is home. If you are a woman, and are coming to the flying field seeking stimulation, excitement and flattery, you had better stay away until flying is a little bit safer.

If you are thinking that flying will develop character; will teach you to be orderly, well-balanced; will give you an increasingly wider outlook; discipline you, and destroy vanity and pride; enable you to control yourself more and more under all conditions; to think less of yourself and your personal problems, and more of sublimity and everlasting peace that dwell serene in the heavens - if you seek these latter qualities, and think on them exclusively, why - FLY!

I learned to watch, to put my trust in other hands than mine. I learned to wander. I learned what every dreaming child needs to know -- that no horizon is so far that you cannot get above it or beyond it. These I learned at once. But most things come harder. When I'm up in the air, it's like I'm closer to heaven; I can't explain the feeling.

To fly a kite is to hold God's hand. But to fly is just like swimming. You do not forget easily. I have been on the ground for more than ten years. If I close my eyes, however, I can again feel the stick in my right hand, the throttle in my left, the rudder bar beneath my feet. I can sense the freedom and the cleanliness and all the things which a pilot knows. Japan's greatest living ace with 64 kills, who was banned from flying at the end of W.

From the foreword to ' Samurai! They shall mount up with wings as eagles. How do you know but ev'ry Bird that cuts the airy way, Is an immense world of delight, clos'd by your senses five? Whether outwardly or inwardly, whether in space or time, the farther we penetrate the unknown, the vaster and more marvelous it becomes. Lindbergh, ' Autobiography of Values. I may be flying a complicated airplane, rushing through space, but in this cabin I'm surrounded by simplicity and thoughts set free of time.

How detached the intimate things around me seem from the great world down below. How strange is this combination of proximity and separation. That ground -- seconds away -- thousands of miles away. This air, stirring mildly around me. That air, rushing by with the speed of a tornado, an inch beyond. These minute details in my cockpit.

The grandeur of the world outside. The nearness of death. The longness of life. A small machine is ideal for short flights, joy riding the heavens, or sight seeing among the clouds; but there is something more majestic and stable about the big bombers which a pilot begins to love. An exquisite community grows up between machine and pilot; each, as it were, merges into the other. The machine is rudimentary and the pilot the intellectual force.

Early Years Gallery

The levers and controls are the nervous system of the machine, through which the will of the pilot may be expressed-and expressed to an infinitely fine degree. A flying-machine is something entirely apart from and above all other contrivances of man's ingenuity. The aeroplane is the nearest thing to animate life that man has created.

In the air a machine ceases indeed to be a mere piece of mechanism; it becomes animate and is capable not only of primary guidance and control, but actually of expressing a pilot's temperament. We who fly do so for the love of flying. We are alive in the air with this miracle that lies in our hands and beneath our feet. Flying alone! Nothing gives such a sense of mastery over time over mechanism, mastery indeed over space, time, and life itself, as this. This was the crystalline moment Dan loved so well, the moment of transition between ground and air, when the laws of aerodynamics took over the job of physical support of the jet.

He'd become a pilot for this very moment: the feel of mighty engines and the roar of the slipstream, all converging on the reality of sustained flight on an invisible highway of air. Flying was a thrill in even a single-engine airplane, but to levitate a leviathan -- a metallic eggshell longer than a football field and heavier than a house -- was a magic he could never quite comprehend. Every liftoff was a philosophical wonder that left a broad smile on his face. Nance, ' Blackout ,' He did it alone.

We had a cast of a million. Pilots are a rare kind of human. They leave the ordinary surface of the word, to purify their soul in the sky, and they come down to earth, only after receiving the communion of the infinite. Until now I have never really lived! Life on earth is a creeping, crawling business. It is in the air that one feels the glory of being a man and of conquering the elements.

There is an exquisite smoothness of motion and the joy of gliding through space. It is wonderful! Flying has always been to me this wonderful metaphor. In order to fly you have to trust what you can't see. Up on the mountain ridges where very few people have been I have thought back to what every flyer knows. That there is this special world in which we dwell that's not marked by boundaries, it's not a map.

We're not hedged about with walls and desks. So often in an office the very worst thing that can happen is you could drop your pencil. Out there's a reminder that are a lot worse things, and a lot greater rewards. I am alive. Up here with the song of the engine and the air whispering on my face as the sunlight and shadows play upon the banking, wheeling wings, I am completely, vibrantly alive. With the stick in my right hand, the throttle in my left, and the rudder beneath my feet, I can savor that essence from which life is made. I live for that exhilarating moment when I'm in an airplane rushing down the runway and pull on the stick and feel lift under its wings.

It's a magical feeling to climb toward the heavens, seeing objects and people on the ground grow smaller and more insignificant. You have left that world beneath you. You are inside the sky. He knew that we gave constant lip service to the dictates of safety and howled like Christians condemned to the arena if any compromise were made of it. He knew we were seekers after ease, suspicious, egotistic, and stubborn to a fault. He also knew that none of us would have continued our careers unless we had always been, and still were, helpless before this opportunity to take a chance. More varied than any landscape was the landscape in the sky, with islands of gold and silver, peninsulas of apricot and rose against a background of many shades of turquoise and azure.

A ship in port is safe, but that is not what ships are for. Sail out to sea and do new things. Ah hell. We had more fun in a week than those weenies had in a lifetime. It's the most exciting thing you have ever done with your pants on! Air racing may not be better than your wedding night, but it's better than the second night.

If you have flown, perhaps you can understand the love a pilot develops for flight. It is much the same emotion a man feels for a woman, or a wife for her husband. Nowadays a businessman can go from his office straight to the airport, get into his airplane and fly six hundred or seven hundred miles without taking off his hat.

He probably will not even mention this flight, which a bare twenty-five years ago would have meant wearing leather jacket and helmet and goggles and risking his neck every minute of the way. No, he probably wouldn't mention it - except to another flier. Then they will talk for hours. They will re-create all the things seen and felt in that wonderful world of air: the sense of remoteness from the busy world below, the feeling of intense brotherhood formed with those who man the radio ranges and control towers and weather stations that bring the pilot home, the clouds and the colors, the surge of the wind on their wings.

They will speak of things that are spiritual and beautiful and of things that are practical and utilitarian; they will mix up angels and engines, sunsets and spark plugs, fraternity and frequencies in one all-encompassing comradeship of interests that makes for the best and most lasting kind of friendship any man can have. Be like the bird in flight. The man who flies an airplane The Wright brothers flew through the smoke screen of impossibility.

Are we lost, or are we found at last? On earth we strive for our various needs, because so goes the fundamental law of man. Aloft, at least for a little while, the needs disappear. Likewise the striving. In the thoughts of man aloft, food and evil become mixed and sometimes reversed. This is the open door to wisdom. Aloft, the earth is ancient and man is young, regardless of his numbers, for there, aloft he may reaffirm his suspicions that he may not be so very much.

This is the gateway to humility. And yet, aloft there are moments when man can ask himself, "what am I, this creature so important to me? Who is it rules me from birth to tomb? Am I but a slave destined to crawl for labor to hearth and back again? Am I but one of the living dead, or my own god set free? Here aloft, we are not lost, but found.

Gann, ' Ernest K. Gann's Flying Circus, ' When we walk to the edge of all the light we have and take the step into the darkness of the unknown, we must believe that one of two things will happen. There will be something solid for us to stand on or we will be taught to fly. The last of the lonely places is the sky, a trackless void where nothing lives or grows, and above it, space itself.

Man may have been destined to walk upon ice or sand, or climb the mountains or take craft upon the sea. But surely he was never meant to fly? But he does, and finding out how to do it was his last great adventure. The bluebird carries the sky on his back. Thou art an eagle, thou doest belong to the sky and not to the earth, stretch forth thy wings and fly. Oh, that I had wings like a dove, for then would I fly away, and be at rest. The philosopher is Nature's pilot. And there you have our difference: to be in hell is to drift: to be in heaven is to steer.

Long flights give you more time to reflect, look around, experience your surroundings. I got to know the nooks and crannies on Mir very, very well. When all the world is a hopeless jumble and the raindrops tumble all around, Heaven opens a magic lane. When all the clouds darken up the skyway, there's a rainbow highway to be found, Leading from your window pane. To a place behind the sun, Just a step beyond the rain. Somewhere over the rainbow way up high, There's a land that I heard of once in a lullaby, Somewhere over the rainbow skies are blue, And the dreams that you dare to dream really do come true.

Someday I'll wish upon a star and wake up where the clouds are far behind me, Where troubles melt like lemon drops, away, above the chimney tops, that's where you'll find me. Somewhere over the rainbow bluebirds fly. Birds fly over the rainbow, why then, oh why can't I? If happy little bluebirds fly beyond the rainbow, why oh why can't I? Up in the sky, look! It's a bird! It's a plane! It's Superman! Caution: Cape does not enable user to fly. I'm a new man.

I go home exhilarated. March It is appearances, characteristics and performance that make a man love an airplane, and they, are what put emotion into one. You love a lot of things if you live around them, but there isn't any woman and there isn't any horse, nor any before nor any after, that is as lovely as a great airplane, and men who love them are faithful to them even though they leave them for others.

A man has only one virginity to lose in fighters, and if it is a lovely plane he loses it to, there his heart will ever be. You can always tell when a man has lost his soul to flying. The poor bastard is hopelessly committed to stopping whatever he is doing long enough to look up and make sure the aircraft purring overhead continues on course and does not suddenly fall out of the sky. It is also his bound duty to watch every aircraft within view take off and land. I might have been born in a hovel, but I determined to travel with the wind and the stars.

We dit it, we did it! So the crew fly on with no thought that they are in motion. Like night over the sea, they are very far from the earth, from towns, from trees. The clock ticks on. The dials, the radio lamps, the various hands and needles go though their invisible alchemy. Out of oblivion the gold has been smelted: there it gleams in the lights of the airport. Flying is more than a sport and more than a job; flying is pure passion and desire, which fill a lifetime.

The cockpit was my office. It was a place where I experienced many emotions and learned many lessons. It was a place of work, but also a keeper of dreams. It was a place of deadly serious encounters, yet there I discovered much about life. I learned about joy and sorrow, pride and humility, fear and overcoming fear. I saw much from that office that most people would never see. At times it terrified me, yet I could always feel at home there. It was my place, at that time in space, and the jet was mine for those moments.

Though it was a place where I could quickly die, the cockpit was a place where I truly lived. Before I went to the Mess I made the excuse I wanted to get something out of my aeroplane, and climbed into the cockpit; I did this, however, to be able to say good-bye to the old dear; and I really felt dreadfully sorry to part with her. I get very attached to aeroplanes, and I am one of those people who think that they aren't so inanimate as we are told they are.

Whether we call it sacrifice, or poetry, or adventure, it is always the same voice that calls. Man's mind and spirit grow with the space in which they are allowed to operate. Ehricke, rocket pioneer. Again I felt that overpowering rush of excitement which I fond almost everyone has experienced who has seen a man fly. It is an exhilaration, a thrill, an ecstasy. Just as children jump and clap their hands to see a kite mount, so, when the machine leaves the ground and with a soaring movement really flies upon its speeding wings, one feels impelled to shout, to rush after it, to do anything which will relieve the overcharged emotion.

Flying is a lot like playing a musical instrument; you're doing so many things and thinking of so many other things, all at the same time. It becomes a spiritual experience. Something wonderful happens in the pit of your stomach. Birds in flight, claims the architect Vincenzo Volentieri, are not between places -- they carry their places with them.

We never wonder where they live: they are at home in the sky, in flight. Flight is their way of being in the world. Before take-off, a professional pilot is keen, anxious, but lest someone read his true feelings he is elaborately casual. The reason for this is that he is about to enter a new though familiar world.

The process of entrance begins a short time before he leaves the ground and is completed the instant he is in the air. Before a magician can join one of these clubs, they usually have to audition. The purpose is to show to the membership they are a magician and not just someone off the street wanting to discover magic secrets. The world's largest magic organization is the International Brotherhood of Magicians ; it publishes a monthly journal, The Linking Ring. The oldest organization is the Society of American Magicians , which publishes the monthly magazine M-U-M and of which Houdini was a member and president for several years.

Davenport's Magic [24] in London's The Strand is the world's oldest family-run magic shop. Traditionally, magicians refuse to reveal the methods behind their tricks to the audience.

What It Was Like During The Golden Age Of Flying

Membership in professional magicians' organizations often requires a commitment never to reveal the secrets of magic to non-magicians. Magic performances tend to fall into a few specialties or genres. Stage illusions use large-scale props and even large animals. Platform magic is performed for a medium to large audience. Close-up magic is performed with the audience close to the magician. Escapology involves escapes from confinement or restraints. Pickpocket magicians take audience members' wallets, belts, and ties.

Mentalism creates the illusion that the magician can read minds. Some modern illusionists believe that it is unethical to give a performance that claims to be anything other than a clever and skillful deception. Others argue that they can claim that the effects are due to magic. These apparently irreconcilable differences of opinion have led to some conflicts among performers. Another issue is the use of deceptive practices for personal gain outside the venue of a magic performance. Examples include fraudulent mediums, con men and grifters who use deception for cheating at card games.

Most of these performers therefore eschew the term "magician" which they view as making a claim to supernatural power in favor of "illusionist" and similar descriptions; for example, the performer Jamy Ian Swiss makes these points by billing himself as an "honest liar". For example, more than thirty years after the illusionist Uri Geller made his first appearances on television in the s to exhibit his self-proclaimed psychic ability to bend spoons, his actions still provoke controversy among some magic performers, because he claimed he was not using conjuring techniques.

On the other hand, because Geller bent—and continues to bend—spoons within a performance context, the Dunninger quote may be said to apply. Less fraught with controversy, however, may be the use of deceptive practices by those who employ conjuring techniques for personal gain outside the venue of a magic performance.

Fraudulent mediums have long capitalized on the popular belief in paranormal phenomena to prey on the bereaved for financial gain. The great escapologist and illusionist Harry Houdini devoted much of his time to exposing such fraudulent operators. Fraudulent faith healers have also been shown to employ sleight of hand to give the appearance of removing chicken-giblet "tumors" from patients' abdomens.

Con men and grifters too may use techniques of conjuring for fraudulent goals. Cheating at card games is an obvious example, and not a surprising one: one of the most respected textbooks of card techniques for magicians, The Expert at the Card Table by Erdnase, was primarily written as an instruction manual for card sharps. The card trick known as "Find the Lady" or " Three-card Monte " is an old favourite of street hustlers, who lure the victim into betting on what seems like a simple proposition: to identify, after a seemingly easy-to-track mixing sequence, which one of three face-down cards is the Queen.

Another example is the shell game , in which a pea is hidden under one of three walnut shells, then shuffled around the table or sidewalk so slowly as to make the pea's position seemingly obvious. Although these are well known as frauds, people still lose money on them; a shell-game ring was broken up in Los Angeles as recently as December Because of the secretive nature of magic, research can be a challenge.

However, organizations exist to band together independent collectors, writers, and researchers of magic history, including the Magic Collectors' Association, [34] which publishes a quarterly magazine and hosts an annual convention; and the Conjuring Arts Research Center , [35] which publishes a monthly newsletter and biannual magazine, and offers its members use of a searchable database of rare books and periodicals. Performance magic is particularly notable as a key area of popular culture from the midth to midth centuries. Many performances and performers can be followed through newspapers [36] of the time.

Many books have been written about magic tricks; so many are written every year that at least one magic author [37] has suggested that more books are written about magic than any other performing art. Although the bulk of these books are not seen on the shelves of libraries or public bookstores, the serious student can find many titles through specialized stores catering to the needs of magic performers. Jones Magic Collection, s— [41] at Princeton University.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For other varieties of magic, see Magic disambiguation. For the artistic tradition, see Illusionism art. For other uses, see The Illusionist disambiguation. For the film, see Magic Trick film. The Conjurer , —, by Hieronymus Bosch or his workshop. Notice how the man in the back row steals another man's purse while applying misdirection by looking at the sky. The artist even misdirects the viewer from the thief by drawing the viewer to the magician. See also: List of magic tricks. For the film by Orson Welles, see Magic Trick film. Play media. See also: List of magic publications.

Arts portal. Congress Does". The Huffington Post.