KIRBY STEWART POST 24
AIR FORCE LUNCHEON
AIR FORCE LUNCHEON
Monday, September 18,
There were 7 flyers who landed for our AF lunch. Someone new was driving the FOLLOW-ME truck, her first day. Hope we didn't scare her off. Anyway, we all did our post-flight, setting the chocks, inserting the gear pins and gust locks, then heading for the hangar. She must have been tipped off, because I had a fresh cup of coffee at my place immediately.
Began the day discussing the weather and how it affected those of us who were there. Then began touting the C-119s, F-4s, B-52s and their new engines to be mounted soon. Saw a couple whom we hadn't seen in awhile, so we had to catch up on all that had been happening around the area.
I decided on a garden salad with Italian dressing.....MMMMmmmmm Oh yeah,...!! A great choice, I might add. The hybrid lettuce is so very green and fresh. Try one. I sprinkled some of my 'secret' flakes on it and it nearly jumped off the plate....!!!
Well, along about 1245hrs., I noticed a few yawns and knew it was time to kick the tires, pull the pins, locks and chocks, then head cross-country to KNAP.
Monday, September 4, Labor Day
Well,..... as you may know, when the post is having a holiday on the same day as the AF luncheon, we usually invite the 'YKWs' to have a peek inside the hangar doors and make their way, escorted, of course, back into the 'inner sanctum'.
The special menu was hamburgers or hot dogs with beans and potato salad. Very good. Yes, we allowed for our 'guests' to be among us, and yes, we tried our best to divert the topic of conversation to something other than AIRPLANES. It wasn't easy. Finally, 'they' decided to all gather at one table to hash over all that has happened since they were last allowed on the property. That gave US the opportunity to get back to HANGAR FLYING....!!!! Yeah, life is good....
Monday, August 7.
There were 7 of us who circled overhead waiting to land at POST 24. Sharon was driving the FOLLOW-ME truck and we followed her to our tables. Yeah, she had a fresh pot on for me.
We picked up where we left off last time discussing some of the stories of the EB-66 airplanes. I thought it was a nice looking aircraft, with laminar wings and underpowered, I am told, with liquid rocket engines as their only choice. I was only around one when it landed at the base to which I was stationed, and I had no reason to get real close to it, so I know next to nothing about it, only what I have researched.
We also had conversations about B-29s, B-47s and some civilian general aircraft while we were waiting to order our lunch. Speaking of lunch, it had been awhile since I last had a bowl of WBC, so I brought along my 'special seasoning' in preparation for the occasion. Oh my.....!!! WHEW.... it doesn't take much....!!! That's why you cannot buy it in the BOYS DEPARTMENT....!!!
All I can say is, oh how I have missed my big bowl of WBC..... We had a reunion, of sorts. MMMMMmmm..... Of course, things get a bit quiet while everyone is chowing down, but the conversation picked up again afterward.
Along about 1245hrs. I began to notice a few were beginning their preflights back to their cross country destinations at 'KNAP'. We kicked the chocks out, pulled off the pitot tube covers, stowed the gust locks and headed off.
Unable to attend the JULY luncheons
I had a previous commitment so I joined the group,…in progress. Glad I got there when I did. The place was overrun with tales way beyond the ‘boundaries’ set up years ago. Things did settle down soon enough. I only ordered a cup of coffee. Of course, it was FRESH. I only drink FRESH coffee. POST 24 is known for the freshest coffee around. I guarantee it…!!!
There were 8 who circled to land for the luncheon. Sharon met us in her FOLLOW-ME truck to guide us to the ramp parking. She had our refreshments before us in a few minutes.
Then we began swapping yarns, again…. You really gotta’ keep an eye out on these rascals, or they will stretch things out. We do have ‘rules’ here, ya’ know. No story can be ‘re-told’ with airspeeds and altitudes greater than 10% of the last time the tale was told. My ears have ‘popped’ when listening to some of these airmen try and sneak one by me.
I ventured out on a limb and ordered the ½ pounder….MMMmmm..!!! That was a great choice. You won’t go wrong with this one. I may try a bowl of WBC next time. It has been awhile since I did. For you newbies, WBC is WILD BILL’S CHILI. That is the ‘hallmark’ of POST 24.
Monday, April 3,
I had a previous commitment but was able to fly in under the radar at about 1215hrs. ….Good thing I did, as most of those rascals seemed ready to break loose with some stories that would mark ‘contrails’….. gott’a really keep an eye on’em.
I had a fresh cup of coffee and listened in to some squawk coming through. We were mainly discussing properties of the ‘propeller’ and exactly what type of formula is derived when selecting a particular prop for a particular engine of a particular airplane. Well, you see where this one is going…. In recent years I’ve been very curious about the fact that propellers are all quite different in shape, size, length, width, number of blades, size of diameter,…etc.
I have begun a crusade in attempting to learn the answer to my questions on this subject. So far I have heard responses such as: I just know about engines. I only hang the prop onto the engine. Pilots response: Both the prop and engine were on the airplane when I arrived to fly, so I did. Others simply shrug their shoulders and give me ‘that look’….
When I contacted Hartzell propeller manufacturing they responded that their aerodynamics system section was ‘amused’ by my interest. Amused…???? They then began forwarding numerous quite a few documents on ‘THE THEORY OF TWISTING ROTATION IN PROPELLERS’. This was filled with the various theories of long words with no vowels as it is applied to rotating metal objects.
It sounded exactly like what I feared most. These folks were trying to re-invent the wheel on me. Guess I will have to chalk it up to ‘MAGIC’.
Monday, March 6
There were 16 who ventured on their cross country to land at POST 24 for lunch. Being as there was only one FOLLOW ME truck, we had to gather at 3 round tables in the Foxhole. Everything turned out fine as we began swapping tales as our refreshments were being served.
I couldn't hear all of the discussions at the other tables but I did notice some raised eyebrows and rolling of the eyes throughout the luncheon, so I know that there were some yarns being 'stretched' to the limit. If you have not been to one of our luncheons, we have a ruling that the airspeed and altitude must be within 10 % of any previous telling of the same story. You gotta' keep an eye on these rascals at all times.
We ordered our lunches.....No, I did not have a bowl of WBC, nor did I have the SUPER SIZE SIZZLE BURGER w/ fries. No, I took one for the team and ordered a garden salad. However, next time I plan on chowing down on a fabulous SSBw/Fries. MMMMMmmm.
Somehow we got on the subject of guns at our table. We did say a few words about the bombers and tankers. Ill try and steer this bunch back to airplanes next time....
Monday, February 6,
There were 11 flyers who braved the elements to stop by for the 'hundred dollar hamburger. Some we hadn't seen since the last cycle of snowbirds.
Didn't take long after Sharon guided us all to the apron by way of her 'FOLLOW ME' truck that we were giving her our 781s for refreshment lists. She was gone and back in just a few minutes. Things began to get serious with the telling of some good ol' flying stories.
It was decided by 1130hrs. that we would place our orders. I got a garden salad and it was delicious and had a great look. Some had the world famous 1/2 pounder burger, cooked to your perfection, with crispy french fries...that's an order that cannot be beat...! Great big ham & cheese sandwich, roast beef sandwich, and o course, a large bowl of 'WBC'.....WILD BILL'S CHILI.....it is just that good....!!!!
We have been trading conversations about the various properties of propellers on airplane engines, We have lots of fun discussing the pros and cons of all sorts of props.
Along about 1245hrs. someone began to yawn and that seems to be very catching. In no time we had begun to go out and perform our preflights, kick away the chocks, stow the gear pins, pull the pitot covers off and head off for a good NAP...
Monday, Feb. 20
10 members showed up at this one and the stories were in full swing as I arrived. I had to quickly catch up on the latest tales. I have had the pleasure of sitting near a pilot of a C-124 and I listen to some of his memories of hanging on to 'Ol shakey'. Always interesting to hear of the missions throughout the world.
I believe some of the gang have not had anyone to listen to their exploits in quite some time. It seems like as they get into relating an old flying tale they seem to perk up and almost relive those periods in their careers. It is a wonderful feeling to see them open up and feel at ease in passing on some of these treasures.
Lunch was served and I ordered a big bowl of 'WBC'.......mmmmMMMMMmmmmm It is THAT good..!!!!
After you've had a bowl of 'WBC', known as 'WILD BILL'S CHILI', there's not much else that will steer you away from wanting to take a much deserved NAP.,.
DECEMBER & JANUARY
The flyers have still been having luncheons on the 1st and 3rd Mondays of each month during DECEMBER and JANUARY. Lots of fun and continue telling the tales of all the missions to all the many places throughout the world over the years.
I will get back to itemizing each meeting beginning in FEBRUARY.
AIR FORCE LUNCHEON Monday, Nov. 21
There were 10 who circled to land and followed Sharon in her ‘FOLLOW ME’ truck to the flight line where we parked, set the wheel chocks, inserted the gear pins and put on the pitot covers before heading to our tables in the lounge.
Sharon had our refreshments out to us in record time so all of us were set to begin sharing some stories. You really have to keep an ear tuned into this bunch, as they can easily extend the ‘rules’ of hangar flying. We only allow the airspeed and the altitude to be increased by no more than 10% each time the same story is told. We did talk about the cargo planes in general and the C-124s, C-130s and C-141s in particular. Also touched upon was the B-47, B-58, B-36, B-26 type.
We gave Sharon our orders and in about 20 minutes our lunch was being served. I have been on the ‘hamburger & fries’ kick for awhile. WOW..!!! This has got to be the BEST burger in town. Charcoal broiled to perfection. If you like your FF nice and crispy then this is the right place. Just request XX CRISPY FF… You will be amazed… MMMmmmm…!!
Other delicious choices to try is WBC…’WILD BILL’S CHILI’, grilled ham & cheese sandwich, post 24 CLUB, HONOR GUARD WRAP, and the list goes on.
Things got quiet as we had our priorities. EAT. Following lunch we continued on with some more tales for awhile. Then I began to notice a few YAWNS and could tell it was just about time to make a quick pre-flight. Everyone kicked out the wheel chocks, stowed the gear pins and pulled off the pitot covers and headed out to our cross-country destination…..NAP TIME….
We’ll do it all again in December.
AIR FORCE LUNCHEON
Monday, Nov. 21
I had several irons in the fire so was not able to do a cross-country to the AF luncheon. I did hear that there were about 10 who made their approaches and landed for a great time.
I did notice that there was no broken furniture out near the dumpster, that is a good sign that things were rather peaceful, and the servers still speak to me when I walk into the post….another good sign.
Anyway, I have my calendar marked for the 3rd Monday and will do my best to be there.
Monday, Oct. 17,
There were 10 flyers who decided to circle and land. All were greeted by Julie in her ‘FOLLOW ME’ truck to our parking spots. We were telling tales even as we pulled our chairs up to the tables. B-36s, KC-135s, B-47s, F-106s, F-103s, F-107s, and F-108s. Those last 3 were not actually brought out into production, only testbeds and prototypes. In fact, the F-108 was actually designed to travel at around Mach 3 so as to keep up with the B-70 bomber. The F-103 was a very streamlined. almost rocket shaped plane that had the pilot access up into the aircraft in a modified capsule. There was no forward view, so the pilot had to look forward through a type of 'periscope'. A few F-107s were produced, but by then, the deciding forces had elected to go to a combination of bombers and missles/rockets, thereby placing the fighter programs onto a back burner.
I returned to my longstanding favorite, a bowl of 'WILD BILL'S CHILI' for lunch. WOW..!!! Still as good as it always was. Not much talking during lunch.....we then went back to covering a few stories before it was time to think about kicking the tires, removing the gear pins and pitot covers and heading for a place called 'NAPVILLE'.
Monday, Oct. 3,
We only had 6 stop by for lunch, but that did not dampen the spirit for swapping a few tales. I even heard a few that I had not heard before.....ha. Gotta' watch this bunch, as they are apt to try to sneak in an old yarn by increasing the altitude and airspeed a few notches.... That happens frequently here at the luncheon.
I ordered the 'half-pounder', as I've become very fond of the fabulous flavor of the charbroil taste. I order my fries extra, extra crispy and they are delicious, too...!!! Don't be ordering the last one though. So, always ask to verify that there is 'one more' just in case I come in.
We talked about several of the bombers and fighters, then got into GA, (civilian types) for awhile. Just about 1300hrs. it became obvious that it was time to pre-flight for a quick cross country hop to find a comfortable place to grab a much needed 'NAP'......
Monday, September 19,
We had 11 flyers land and taxi in as they followed Sharon in her 'FOLLOW ME' truck to the luncheon. She began getting our refreshments and the tales soon followed. Oh yeah, we began discussing airplanes right away. U-2s, B-57s, B-50s, F-35s and several general aviation types.
We placed our orders and received them promptly. I have been switching over to the half pound hamburger.....!!! WOW...!!! What a meal.... It is great....!!! I have spoken to a lot of people and they all agree that POST 24 serves the finest food in the entire area.....!!!
Once we got into a cadence of talking and eating we managed to begin again to cover stories about airplanes. It is pure joy to sit and listen to these rascals share their tales of their careers in the AIR FORCE.
As usual, around 1300hrs. I began to see folks yawn and knew it was just about time to kick the tires, pull the gear pins, stow the rudder lock, pitot tube covers and begin a walk around preflight for a quick cross country to NAP TIME.
Monday, September 5
Happy LABOR DAY.... We celebrated the holiday by opening up the hangar doors a wee bit so the 'YKWs' could come in and catch up on what they have been doing since the last time they were allowed behind the curtain and into the hallowed halls of AIRPLANES.
There were only 11, including a few of the 'YOU KNOW WHOs', but we had a great time. The menu on the holiday was limited to hamburgers or hot dogs, baked beans & potato salad. Those hamburgers were GREAT...!!!! They have a special charbroil taste. If you've never tried one then I suggest you put in your order. MMMmmmmm.
Anyway, the luncheon and the holiday went very well. The restaurant began serving at 1100hrs. and continued until 1900hrs. Of course, along about 1330hrs. I began seeing a few yawns and figured we were due for a quick pre-flight to a cross country destination, then find a comfortable spot for a much needed and well deserved NAP.
Monday, August 1,
There were 11 flyers who decided to circle POST 24 and land for the luncheon. After we taxied in, set the chocks, inserted the gear pins and put on the pitot covers Sharon led us to the hangar with her ‘FOLLOW ME’ truck.
We each had our refreshments in no time and the stories began to fall out of the sky. There were enough for 2 tables of us so I was deep in conversation at mine while keeping one ear tuned in at the other just in case I heard something interest-ing. Believe me, I was busy….!!
We discussed B-47s, C-121s, in case you forgot, that is the Constellation. Beautiful airplane. C-130s, B-66s, B-52s and some civilian types. Those tales can really trigger an appetite and we were chomping at the bit when Sharon began taking our orders. Yes, I had a large bowl of WBC. For those of you who are not regulars, that is WILD BILL’S CHILI. It is WILD and it is DELICIOUS. One of the flyers had a large corned beef sandwich….it was huge. Another had a grilled ham & cheese sandwich. I’ve had that and it is great…!!! Lots of various items from which to choose.
Well, as nearly always happens around 1300hrs. one can watch as one after the other begin yawning and stretching. That means only one thing. Time to do a quick pre-flight and head cross-country to ‘nap time’.
We’ll do it again in a couple of weeks so bring along a tale or two.
AIR FORCE LUNCHEON July 18
There were 14 of us who landed and taxied in behind the ‘FOLLOW ME’ truck driven by Julie today. I had to leave by 1230hrs., but was able to have a couple cups of fresh coffee and mix it up with the troops.
Had a newbie show up who had been on B-66s and B-47s. I had a good time discussing the B-66s. I always thought they were a nice looking plane. They had a unique laminated wing. The EB-66s carried a pod inside its bomb bay that housed technicians during flight for electronics surveillance. Not certain of the details. The British military had a Vulcan bomber that housed 4 crew members in the rear portion of the fuselage. The pilot and copilot had ejection seats, but these 4 in the rear had no way of getting out in flight. Pretty strange design and priorities.
I had recently seen a documentary on the B-57. Now there is a pretty airplane…!!! As those who were around them can attest, it was a treat to watch’em start the engines. They also had a distinctive sound all their own.
I happened upon a copy of the AIR FORCE TIMES and noticed some interesting headlines. I’m looking forward to reading it from cover to cover.
As stated, I departed at 1230hrs. and most of the flyers were still seated. I trust everything went well, or, at least when I returned there was no broken furniture stacked up beside the dumpster. That’s always a good sign.
Hopefully we’ll be back together on Monday, August 1st to have our next luncheon. See you then.
Monday, July 4
As our AF LUNCHEON fell on the same day as July 4th we decided to open the hangar doors up a bit and allow the 'YKW's in for a peek. Yeah, it's a real bummer. At least they can set the chocks, install the gear pins and insert the rudder locks after we land.
Carol was at the wheel of the 'FOLLOW ME' truck and took us to the 'FOXHOLE lounge' for our 'hundred dollar hamburger'. No, not really. As POST 24 was celebrating the holiday they offered hamburgers or hotdogs with baked beans and potato salad for $6. Who wouldn't put'er down for that. MMMMMmmmmm. They make the greatest hamburger around...!!! They grill them over an open flame and do they taste goooooood...!!! The DAWGS are large and just barely burnt and give off that 'snap' you want to hear when downing one of them.
In total there were 6 of us plus my bride. We had taken the HONOR GUARD bus out to AMI for the annual parade and made it back by 1230hrs. Most of the others had just finished their meals and I could tell they were setting their dopplers to go on a quick cross-country trip to NAP TIME. A couple of us stayed until about 1400hrs. and talked with quite a few others who had come over to POST 24 to eat and celebrate. They served until 1900hrs.
Next time we will once again have the hangar secured for AIR FORCE PERSONNEL only.
Monday, June 20
We had 13 show up at the luncheon. A sad occasion as one of our own was being laid to rest down at National later on in the afternoon. Of course, most of us were able to attend.
We did get around to discussing some airplane stories and some recent news concerning aircraft incidents and accidents.
I ordered a large bowl of WBC and had brought along my 'special additive'. Again, no takers. Can't imagine why.... WHEW....it's HOT...!!! We did talk about the F-105s and mention was made of the A-1 Skyraider. What a beautiful plane. It looks massive and daunting.
Monday, June 6,
There were only 8 who ventured out into the elements to attend the luncheon, but a hardy lot. Sharon led the entourage with her 'FOLLOW ME truck' after we had installed the gear pins, rudder locks and put on the pitot covers. Refreshments were served right away and I had my usual cup of fresh coffee at hand.
I guess the gang had been eager to get out of the house because no sooner than we sat down the tales began to come out. We touted the F-4s, F-106s, P-47s, KC-97s, B-47s and the almighty 4360 radial engine. What a monster..!
I decided to try the grilled ham & cheese on rye for a change......WOW...!!! If you have not had one then, by all means, come on down and put your order in....!!! It is wonderful, and huge...!! I will go back to my bowl of 'WBC' next time. The menu at POST 24 is filled with delicious entrees and it is actually difficult to decide what to have. Why not be a regular and try'em all. Yeah..., that sounds like a plan to me.
Things got real quiet while we were eating, then a few stories were up and running again, but I began to notice a few stretches and yawns.... of course, you know what that means... Time to do a quick pre-flight and head cross country for a much deserved NAP...
Monday, May 16,
We had 13 land to attend our luncheon. We had a couple of 'newbies' join us so most of us had to bring them up to speed on how we 'operate' at the AF luncheon. It didn't long for them to catch on as I heard a couple of stories repeated and both times the airspeed and altitude was different..... go figure...
I had a cup of fresh coffee as sonn as I sat down and looked forward to an order of my favorite, WBC.... Oh yeah, it is just that good.
We discussed quite a few airplanes with the B-52s, KC-135s, C-141s, C-47s, B-1s and F-104s. It is always a treat to listen to the tales brought in by these folks. Gotta' keep an eye on them at times. I've even had my ears pop listening to how high some flew....
It got pretty quiet when our food orders arrived. MMMmmm. Afterward, I heard a few more memories being told and then noticed a few beginning to yawn. That went around quickly and then all were looking at the clock and realizing that it was getting close to 'N' hour. NAP TIME....
We all began preflighting and kicking the tires, storing the gear pins and removing the pitot covers.
Monday, May 2,
I had a previous commitment and had to leave before the 'flyers' arrived, then didn't return until after they had left, so I do not know what happened. I DO know there was no broken furniture out near the dumpster and all the lights were still on, so it couldn't have been too bad. The servers at the POST haven't been giving me the 'evil eye' so I can only surmise that things went pretty smooth.
Monday, April 18, 1100hrs.
I had a previous commitment, but arrived at 1130hrs. to see 17 flyers had come for their 'hundred dollar hamburger'. There were 2 newbies joining us along with a couple of fliers who had been TDY for quite awhile. Barbara was kind enough to lead me to my place in her 'FOLLOW ME' truck and I immediately had a fresh cup of coffee in front of me. How is that for service...? I put in my order for my usual, W.B.C.
We began discussing airplanes, what else...? C-54s, F-4s, F105s, C-124s, EC-135s, F-106s, along with various recip. engines, such as the 4360s. What a monster..!! We also talked about all the 'places' we had been stationed throughout our various careers. Sounds like a few of the people had been extra kind to the folks at personnel...and a few others had not.
Our food arrived and things got real quiet for awhile, then the noise level rose again as the stories began to be retold, only this time, a bit higher and a little faster. Really gotta' watch this bunch....
Seemed like 1245hrs. arrived pretty quickly and soon it was time to pre-flight for the trip to a favorite respite.....NAP TIME. Wheel chocks were kicked aside, pitot covers were removed. Gear pins stowed. Contact...and off we go....
See ya' next time...!!
Monday, April 4, 1100hrs.
The AIR FORCE LUNCHEON met on Monday, April 4, at 1100hrs. with 16 present. Yes, they circled the field, landed, then taxied onto the apron to wait for Harriott in her FOLLOW ME truck.
We got situated and the servers began taking orders for our refreshments right away. Of course, I had a fresh cup of coffee, the best in the area. Yes, for you flyers out there, you could call it a hundred dollar cup.
Well, if you’ve ever been to one of our AF luncheons then you know that it doesn’t take much to get folks started on stories. And, it seems they get a little faster and a little higher each time they relive their adventure. Gotta’ watch these rascals.
It wasn’t long until we were giving our lunch orders to Harriott. POST 24 has the new age electronics and they accept all forms of credit cards, minimum $10. charge.
I decided it was time to go out on the thin ice and ordered the grilled ham and cheese sandwich. WOW….!!! I know, it was all I could do not to order a large bowl of WILD BILL’S CHILI’. If you have been reading my reports, then you are aware that CHILI is my favorite item at POST 24. I have been wanting to try some of the other delicious items on the menu, but somehow the CHILI takes center stage. It is just that good. I’ll go back to my CHILI next time.
We talked about the C-124s, B-47s, F-106s, F-4s, KC-135s and quite a few other aircraft. It is always a treat to listen to all the tales. A real history lesson.
Everyone seems to enjoy our little get-togethers and we’ve been doing it for the past 18 years. Our next one will be on Monday, April 18. If you are an AIR FORCE VETERAN you are welcome to join us.
Monday, March 7,
I had a previous commitment so I only managed to stop by for the tail end of the luncheon. Not to worry, as it seemed that Harriott had things pretty much in control. I had noticed there were no broken tables and chairs stacked up at the dumpster. That is always a sign that the event was uneventful. Also the lack of blue flashing lights is reassuring as I approach the post.
Monday, February 1 1100hrs.
There were 23 fliers swoop in for lunch while Sharon and Barbara had their hands full driving the 'FOLLOW ME' truck around in an attempt to park everyone who showed. We had decided to 'debrief' at the regular round tables, which saves making special preparations for all of us. Plus, the servers seem to like it because it is easier to reach each person for taking orders, then serving.
Well, the exhaust fumes had hardly disappeared when the 'stories' began. It was like they had never stopped from the last luncheon. We discussed the F-105s, B-47s, Air Police, B-50s, C-124s, B-52s, T-37s, F-5s and a host of other planes including the Tupulov 225, the largest airplane of all and built by Russia. It is a monster.
I had my fresh cup of coffee before me as I sat down, as did others with their various refreshments. I made a major change.....yes, I went over to the other side. I ordered a hamburger. WOW...!!! They are flame broiled, ya' know...!! You can hear it sizzlin' and smell that wonderful aroma as it is brought out of the galley. MMMMMmmmm!!! No sneaking up on me with one of those....!!!
Monday, January 4, 1100hrs.
I happened to be TDY on our luncheon day. However, I did hear that the 'hot phone' direct to downtown was not needed. That is always reassuring. In the past, any mention of calling downtown meant lots of paperwork, along with providing 'bail' for the more exhuberant persons attending. I do conduct interviews with those unfortunate enough to get caught in the middle. I am always thankful upon returning to notice when no furniture has been stacked up against one of the dumpsters. It's a good thing.
Monday, January 18, 1100hrs.
There were 26 flyers attending as they entered the traffic pattern, landed, then waited for our 'servers' to hop in the 'FOLLOW ME TRUCK' as we headed to our tables. Yes, we've changed from trying to fit all of us to one long set of tables. Instead, we have been trying several '6 top' tables already nearby. This is much easier for the servers to take orders and serve. It is easier to get in and out of our seats. All of us can pretty much see everyone else at other tables to know who is present.
We had a couple of 'newbies' on Monday. One was the brother of an AF member, who had been in the Army. The other was a flightline chief at Forbes AFB in Kansas on RB-47s. Others conversations centered around KC-135s, KC-10s and the new tanker being built by Northrup/Gruman, the KC-46. There were quite a few 'flying stories' going on during our lunch. I was busy keeping my ears open in order to listen to the best one. A real treat...!!!
AIR FORCE LUNCHEON Christmas lunch
Monday, December 21, 1100hrs.
There were 23 in attendance for the annual Christmas lunch. It is a very special occasion because we open the hangar doors and unlock the inner sanctum to the ‘YOU KNOW WHOs’ who join the AIR FORCE LUNCH BUNCH. This only happens a couple of times a year, so ‘they’ catch up on all of what ‘they’ have been doing since the last time ‘they’ were allowed in. This allows us flyers to get back to telling the tales of airplanes.
We are now seated at round 6 top tables, that’s restaurant speak, instead of the usual long tables. It is easier for the servers to get to all those in attendance…..and that is a high priority…EAT..!
Speaking of eating. It was decided that with so many attending, it would be prudent to serve a choice of entrees, instead of the normal menu items.
WOW…, no, DOUBLE WOW…!!! The choices were HAM, or BAKED HADDOCK. I chose door number 2, the baked haddock, and am I glad I did…! It was delicious…!! I can only surmise that our executive chefs, JIMEE’ and JOHN, must have rowed way out into the deep end of the pool for mine. It was wonderful…!! I had asked them to be sure and double-bait the hook before casting. They did GOOOOOOD….!!! I did have a bite of the ham….. it was great and tender…! For sides, we had mashed potatoes, gravy, mixed vegetables and rolls. Then to cap things off we had a large piece of moist red cake…..MMMmmm…
My bride had decorated all the tables in a festive nature, then decorated a large table on which she made a large bowl of lime punch and a large plate of cookies. It looked like Christmas. We also had a few ticket drawings for special holiday candies. That is always a hit.
Things began to slow down around 1300hrs. and Sharon and Barbara guided all of us with the ‘FOLLOW ME truck’ out to the flightline. Didn’t take long to preflight as we all had pre-programmed in ‘NAP TIME’ into our GPS inertial nav. system.
AIR FORCE LUNCHEON...
Monday, November 16,
There were 23 in the hangar this time.....I had a previous committment, but left word with Barbara, one of our servers to keep an eagle eye on several of our flyers.... It doesn't take much to get them started down that ol' 'betcha' can't top this one' when it comes to story telling.... Really gotta' watch this bunch.
Anyway, I came back to POST 24 and noticed there was no broken furniture stacked up near the dumpsters and as far as I know the fire department was not notified. Whew....!!! Creates a lot of paperwork whenever these things happen.
I'm sure I will find out more details at the next AF LUNCHEON..... Oh yes...!!!!
I did make an announcement before I had to depart.
The AIR FORCE LUNCHEON is open to AIR FORCE PERSONNEL ONLY.
I have invited other military branches to form their own separate groups and luncheons and there are pages on the website dedicated to each branch. Please respect our exclusivity. Thank you.
Monday, November 2,
We had a total of 18 flyers circle and land for the luncheon. Didn't take long to get the conversation started about aircraft. We talked about the SR-71s, C-124s, the Russian Toubalov 225, and several other types as Sharon and Barbara began getting our refreshments.
We welcomed three newbies to our group and they seemed pleased to be with all of us as we swapped tales. Had a couple of stragglers, but we all began to order our lunch around 1130hrs. Yeah, I got my usual.... A large bowl of 'WILD BILL'S CHILI'. It was as delicious as always.....
Lots of chatter about the Air Force and airplanes until the chow arrived. Things began to get serious and quickly. We don't do much multi-tasking when the chow comes into view. It gets a bit quiet for awhile, then we again continue where we left off. However, around 1245hrs I can tell most of the gang are just about ready to began their 'pre-flight' for a quick flight home for NAP TIME. Everyone files out to begin pulling the pitot covers, stowing the gear pins and kicking away the wheel chocks. 'Contact' and we are off......
Monday, October 19,
The AIR FORCE LUNCHEON is for AIR FORCE VETERANS only.
Well, we only had 13 show up for our luncheon today, but it got rowdy and in a hurry. Once everyone taxiied in Sharon and Barbara got out of the 'FOLLOW ME' truck and began taking orders for the various refreshments. They were back in a flash with everyone ready to talk airplanes.
We began with C-124s flying over the Pacific....talk about a long, shakey haul.... Then someone mentioned B-47s, Mooneys, 172s, then we got to the KC-135s, KC-97s and how they accomplished their respective refueling missions. SR-71s and B-52s were the topic of conversation for awhile. Very interesting stories.
We got our orders in and carried on with the tales for awhile until we heard the trolley carts coming out of the galley. They were loaded down with all sorts of items. It is beyond description all that is on the menu at POST 24. It is a difficult decision at times. Of course, I am pretty steady with a bowl of 'WILD BILL'S CHILI', as were quite a few others. I always bring my bottle of spice to take it up a few thousand feet.,..whew. You don't find this stuff in the BOYS DEPARTMENT....!!!!
Things got pretty quiet for awhile then the airplane stories began again. Yes, it gets pretty wild and one must watch that the altitude and airspeed parameters are not exceeded. We agreed to allow for only a 10 percent increase in both numbers each time the same yarn is told..... Gotta' watch'em close....
I began to see some yawns and knew it was fast approaching that time......NAP TIME. The fellas kicked away the tire chocks, pulled off the pitot covers and removed the rudder lock in preparation to take off.
AIR FORCE LUNCHEON...Monday, October 5,
We had a great turnout with 19 flyers circling to land. It didn't take long before airplanes were being cussed and discussed. There was talk of C-124s, B-52s, P-47s, AT-37s, U-2s, SR-71s, B-50s and F-4s. I haven't been on all of them so I couldn't tell if some of the tales had tails on them or not. I kept a close eye on the person relaying the story to see how many times they blinked, or cleared their throat. That's usually a tip off.....ha.
Sharon and Barbara were doing the serving and they were right on their game. As soon as all the refreshments were served I saw them huddling in a corner comparing their notes. That could be a sign of something. They must have been scoping out who was going to order what. They came over, began taking orders and off they went to turn it all in to the 'galley'.
We went back to hangar flying for about 15 minutes when they reappeared with carts stacked to the waterline with lots of food. There were club sandwiches, BLTs, ham & cheese, and of course, quite a few bowls of 'WILD BILL'S CHILI'. It is soooooo good. Last time I did try the grilled ham & cheese and it was delicous.
I saw quite a few of our 'USUAL SUSPECTS' throughout POST 24. Everyone doing their part in keeping the good ship fair and true to the headwinds. I heard that a long time ago when I was on a boat..... Anyway, everything is operating as it should. Stop by sometime and find out for yourself.
Monday, September 21, ( hangar door OPEN/ YOU KNOW WHOs invited)
Being that the previous two AF LUNCHEONS were canceled due to renevation to the post our crew was chomping at the bit to fly the downwind leg, land and taxi ready to partake of a great time,....even with the YOU KNOW WHOs.
The decision was made to use the existing round tables this year instead of the long ones. From what I could tell, everyone seemed pleased with the arrangements. Actually, one could look around and pretty much see everyone else who was in attendance.
There were 32 in attendance and the executive chefs decided that with the much qualified servers we could order from the main menu. Sometimes when so many are dining a more restricted menu is offered. Anyway, everyone got to order anything they wanted from the regular menu, and it is a big menu. Lots of great delicious items from which to choose.
I went out on the 'edge' this time and ordered a grilled ham & cheese sandwich on marble rye. MMMmmmm...!! Oh yeah, I had a large cup of FRESH coffee, too. I don't know how they did it, but the servers were able to take all the orders, get them going, then bring the delicious entrees out to each of us all within about 20 minutes. We were therefore able to actually dine together. It worked out great....... Well, except for that one little incident with the 'musical chairs' game someone had suggested. It turns out that not everyone got the 'memo' and a melee broke out near the 'time-out table' just as the music stopped.
It is not certain whether any pictures were taken of the altercation, but it is certain that if any pictures do exist then they are in the hands of the authorities. This is S.O.P. for any party at POST 24.
I will continue to research into exactly what went wrong during the marathon episode of our annual 'ROCK, PAPER, SCISSORS'. Please stay tuned for there is much more than meets the eye on this one. One nugget of information of which I can share. It was learned that among the contestants were three, perhaps four, innocent individuals who were actually performing 'signing' duties to some of the audience members. This seemed to turn the entire game into a disaster with nearly all the wheels falling off that bandwagon. I am sure many will demand several ammendments to any future parlor games held at POST 24.
Monday, August 3rd.
Well, we finally found out who is serious and who is not...... It rained today. Did I mention that it rained today?? It seems we have some 'fair weather' pilots.... Only 7 ventured out into IFR conditions for the luncheon. That didn't keep us from lighting up the airwaves with lots of chatter about airplanes.
Sharon and Barbara were quick with the 'FOLLOW ME' truck to our seats in the hangar with refreshments as soon as we were settled. Of course, I had a fresh cup of that world famous POST 24 COFFEE. .....And we don't need a mule to get it down from the hillside.....
Anyway, the subject of 'drones' came up as possible 'FOD' for airplanes. All were in agreement that those little things are going to create some serious 'incidents' if the regulations in place are not enforced. We had a new flyer who was involved in maintenance of B-58 Hustler bombers. What a plane....!!!!! So beautiful and soooo expensive to fly and maintain.
I believe ham and cheese was the main entree ordered, however, I had to stay with 'WILD BILL'S CHILI'.....Mmmm. It is just that good.... Different bases were discussed and most everyone thought 'they' had been stationed at the worst place in the world.... That seems to always be the case.... Let's see..... I spent a tour at KINCHELOE and another tour at LORING...... Yeah, I got this......
It was about 1245hrs. when we saw the first yawn and knew it was just about time to perform our preflight inspections and head off for a much deserved NAP..... The wheel chocks were kicked aside, props cleared and off we go.......
Monday found around 18 flyers who taxied in for our bi-monthly get-together. I arrived precisely at 1100hrs. and the tables were nearly full. I had to muzzle my way into the trough to get a seat. At the moment I sat down I was presented with a steaming cup of fresh coffee. These servers are definitely on the ball. I am a coffee-hound and as soon as I enter POST 24 a fresh cup is made for me. That is service.
Our servers, Sharon and Barbara were on their A-game as each refreshment order was taken and filled within a couple of minutes. As soon as everyone was settled in the servers began taking our food orders. With this many people trying to order at the same time it could be quite a situation. It could be, but not at POST 24. They must have some secret recipe for doing all of this. I know our executive chefs are always prepared for our ‘lunch bunch’.
The time between ordering and being served is our time to swap some whoppers. And I do mean some whoppers. I thought my ears popped a couple of times with these guys telling and re-telling their yarns about their flying days and how fast and how high they had been. Seems like each time they go a little faster and a little higher.
Anyway, the talk was thick with airplane tales and I was in hog heaven listening to the banter. I sat next to a man who has an airplane at a local airport.. I spent the better part of the luncheon asking him lots of questions in between him sharing stories with me on things that go on there. Very interesting.
One man sitting on the other side of me ordered the ‘special of the day’, fried shrimp basket. It sounded very tempting and it looked delicious when it arrived, but I was quick to order a large bowl of ‘WILD BILL’S CHILI’. Someday I will venture out and try something new, but it is difficult to bypass my all time favorite entre’. Most of the others had the ham and cheese, which is great, huge and delicious. Some had the French dip. I’ve not tried that one, but everyone raves about it. There were several who did order the ‘special’.
Well, around 1230hrs. most of us were all done with lunch while relaxing over a few more tales. I could see out over the crowd that eyes were blinking and some had begun to yawn. That means it is time to pre-flight for a trip to ‘NAP TIME’. The servers escorted all of us with the ‘FOLLOW ME TRUCK’ out to our rides. We began removing the pitot covers, door locks and unlocking the canopies while kicking the drip pans and wheel chocks out of the way. ‘Contact’ and off we go until the next time, which is Monday, August 3rd.
If you are a VETERAN of the AIR FORCE then you are welcome to join us.
There were 14 who flew in to see what was going on at the luncheon. A few had been gone for awhile, but soon got right back into it. Kathy was there with the 'FOLLOW ME' truck to escort us to our positions on the flight line, then on into the hangar. Refreshments were ordered and served within a few minutes. Kathy seems to have it down to a science. Oh, now and then some of the gang will switch seats in an attempt to get her confused, but she has played that game before. Hey, it is just about all the entertainment these folks can handle at once.....ha
Everyone began filling in all the details since our last luncheon. I had not been able to be there, but I did not receive any calls from the authorities, so I feel very relieved. Well, we talked about C-17s, F-86s, B-24s, C-5s, B-26s and then got on the subject of different bases to which folks had been assigned. I never knew there were so many places considered 'hell-holes'. I have been at a few.....but it is only as good, or bad, as one makes it. That's what they say.... However, I have yet to meet 'THEY'.....
Yes, I had a big bowl of 'WILD BILL'S CHILI'. They had a special of roast beef on a pretzel roll, looked good, but it had been a few days since I tasted the chili. WOW.....!!! Still as good as ever....!!!! Did I mention..... POST 24 serves the freshest coffee around. Order a cup and see for yourself. Anyway, things got pretty quiet while we chowed down, then the discussion picked up again. Things were getting pretty wound up with chatter and then some of the gang began to yawn. Well, that is an international sign and we all know what that means... NAP TIME.
The gang began pre-flighting, removing the pitot covers, gear pins and door locks, while Kathy kicked away the wheel chocks. We will do it all again in a couple of weeks on July 20th. If you are a veteran of the AIR FORCE you are eligible and most welcome to join us in the hangar.
I could not attend the LUNCHEON as I had previous commitments, but as I returned later in the afternoon I did not see any 'police tape'. That is a good sign. I did not see any broken furniture gathered around the dumpster out back....another good sign. I have not spoken to the servers and have not seen any 'post it notes' in my basket, so I feel the AIR FORCE luncheon must have gone on pretty 'uneventful'. That is a good sign.
I always have to keep an eye on this bunch.....doesn't take much to get it squirrely and out of control.....and in a hurry. Much like nudging the control column on approach. 'Didn't know it could even DO that'...!!!
Anyway, I am looking forward to the next time we get together for the AIR FORCE LUNCHEON and learn if I missed anything. I'm certain I will hear it again, only it will be a bit HIGHER and a bit FASTER....!!!
There were 13 flyers who circled the field and landed for the luncheon. We could tell it had been awhile since we last got together because the stories began as soon as they were seated in the hangar. Our wonderful hostesses, Kathy and Carolyn, were immediately on hand to take the refreshment orders. Once served, everyone sat back to see who else was there.
One of the guys brought up the subject of celebrating the beginning of the AIR FORCE as a separate military branch on September 18, 1947. It was decided that a convenient date would be on the first Monday of September, which is Labor Day, which is also the day that we allow the 'YOU KNOW WHOs' to enter our inner sanctum. I know, it is a real bummer because it is difficult to tell our AIR FORCE TALES with a bunch of females cackling about everything except airplanes and flying.....!!! Thankfully, it only happens a couple of times a year. Yeah, we allow them in every year at Christmas time on the 3rd Monday of December. We consider this 'gesture' to be our Christmas present to 'them'.... Let the 'yule times' roll.....!!!!
Lunch was ordered and I stuck with an order of 'WILD BILL'S CHILI'.... It is sooooooo good...!!! There are a lot of wonderful items on the menu and sometimes I do make the switch and try something else, but I had brought in my 'go fast' sauce.
About 1245hrs folks began to get fidgety and everyone knew it was time to do a quick pre-flight to make that trip to the nearest place to take a well deserved NAP....
The AF luncheon met on Monday, May 6th and we noticed that quite a few snowbirds had begun their cross-country trip up north for the summer. Fair weather pilots, as we call them.....ha. Anyway, we had 16 hard-timers who are sticking it out down here. No shortage of stories though.
Carolyn and Kathy were beside each of us as we taxiied into position to get our beverage order. Within 2 minutes everyone had a refreshment and we got down to serious business, yeah, that's AIR FORCE talk for flying and talking about flying....
Lunch was ordered and then served promptly by 1145hrs. Why of course, I had the world famous WILD BILL' CHILI..... It was just as I remembered from last time. DELICIOUS....!!!! Lots of other great items on the expanded menu.
Didn't take long to weave in a few tales among bites of lunch. If you were in the AIR FORCE and would like to sample our get-together you are most welcome to join. Just leave your YOU KNOW WHO at home. We invite them to join us a couple of times a year when they are allowed to peek under the tent.
I seem to be getting behind the power curve on my AF LUNCHEON report. Sorry about that. Both the 1st and 3rd luncheons were around 16 flyers who dropped their gear, lowered their flaps, landed and taxiied in for a great time at POST 24.
I remember some of us discussing various engine sizes of some of the old recips back in the 40s and 50s. Some of those were monsters....! The 4360 had 4 rows of 7 cylinders per engine. Each cylinder had 2 big spark plugs, which means 56 spark plugs per engine. The B-50 had 4 engines, therefore a total of 224 spark plugs per plane. When someone said they were going to set the gap, they were planning on being gone for awhile.....ha.
The first luncheon was much like those in February, which was GREAT....!!!
I was unable to attend the luncheon on March 16th, as I had an HONOR GUARD commitment. However, on my return I did notice that all the furniture was still in the upright position, so I assume everything went well.
I do miss these luncheons.
I was able to attend both luncheons during the month and it was all I could do to maintain control of this lot. We had 25 at each sitting and they were rowdy. Things got started right away at 1100hrs. sharp as we all circled to land. Kathy and Carolyn were in their respective 'FOLLOW ME TRUCKS' to show us to our spots. After inserting the gear pins, wheel chocks and pitot covers, everyone found a seat and ordered their favorite beverage.
It didn't take long for the tales to take over. I moved from place to place a few times to be certain to hear all the details. Seems like I had heard a few of those stories before, only the speed and altitude were a bit lower....ha.
Of course, when our orders were taken I put in for a bowl of 'WILD BILL'S CHILI'!!! It was delicious, as always. The special was 'french dip sandwich', and it looked wonderful. The grilled ham and cheese is always a great choice. There are plenty of choices on the menu, including the 'HONOR GUARD WRAP'. You'll just have to stop in and order one, as it is impossible to describe. MMMMmmmm!!!!
I will only say 'DITTO' for the second luncheon in February. It was just that good.... Around 1245hrs. folks began to yawn and I knew it was time to pre-flight for a trip to a much deserved NAP. We kecked out the wheel chocks, removed the pitot covers and pulled the gear pins for our get-away. See you next time....
Monday, January 19
The airfield was maxed out with 22 circling to land for lunch and to bring along a few tales to share. The tables and chairs had been originally set up as first class accommodations with plenty of room, but, by the time we added the extra seats to the existing tables it was pretty much ‘coach’ all the way. Don’t really feel anyone really cared that much. It made sharing all the various and interesting stories easier to understand and follow.
A few snowbirds were kicking ice off their leading edges as they taxied in and we had 2 ‘newbies’ join our ranks. They seemed to get along very good with all the other established fellas.
I was floating around trying to tie a few loose ends and visiting with the gang, but Kathy caught up with me and had a fresh cup of coffee waiting for me. She began taking refreshment orders from all the troops, most of whom she has memorized. Soon everyone was topped off and we got into some serious conversations about some GA airplanes, namely the Bombardier, Bonanaza, Piper Cubs, and several other small planes. We discussed the various flight simulators and the fact that so many drones are in the air in what seems like organized chaos. Those small drones can play havoc with an airplane.
We began ordering from the varied menu at 1120hrs, then got back to our stories. Lunch was served all together about 1145hrs, which is great, considering there were 22 of us ordering all sorts of different items. Kathy did a spectacular job in having all our lunches served at the same time. Our executive chefs, Martha and Jimmi, really worked outstandingly to take care of all of us, while at the same time, taking care of the regular lunch crowd on the other side in the FOXHOLE lounge.
It wasn’t long after that most began yawning and checking their watches. I knew it was preflight time to head out and prepare for a much deserved NAP.
Come join us next time. Remember, leave the YOU KNOW WHOs at home.
We began the new year with 19 flyers, along with 2 newbies and 2 guests. We got a lively conversation going about the beautiful C-124 transport aircraft. Being that there are a couple of crew members from 'ol shakey' we can always depend on reliving some lively tales of their adventures. Kathy had my fresh cup of coffee ready for me as I sat down. She began taking our lunch orders soon thereafter and I, of course, put in my order for some of 'WILD BILL'S CHILI'.
Discussions commenced on the Boeing 707 and the Lockheed Jetstar. Both were beautiful airplanes with sleek lines for their time. I had the honor of being associated with both. I heard some others talking about other planes and bases in North Africa, Alaska, Canada, South Dakota, Montana and North Dakota. Sounds like someone was on the 'wrong side' of the folks up at personnel......ha
Kathy began bringing out all of our orders with the help of Chef Jimmi'. Ohhhhh my...., my order of 'WILD BILL'S CHILI' was delicious and piping hot.... I, of course, brought in my 'secret additive' to kick it up a few thousand feet. I noticed others had ordered a roast beef sandwich with dipping juice, which looked great. You should take a look at the large choice of menu items now being served at POST 24. Quite a large selection available every day, with some very tasty specials.
I had a couple of errands to run so I had to do a preflight. Others were beginning to do their walk-a-rounds, removing pitot covers, wheel chocks and gust locks, heading out for a much deserved NAP.
The annual Christmas party was held at POST 24, but only after several documents were signed by those in attendance and the local authorities. Seems as though word is out about how POST 24 has an abundant amount of fun.
We, as members of the LUNCH BUNCH, decided a few years ago to invite our 'YOU KNOW WHOs' to the AF luncheon. Amazingly, we have been able to maintain control and limit their presence to the Christmas party. As a result, the hangar doors are closed, all talk of, and swapping stories about airplanes, are put on temporary hold while 'THEY' are around. It gives them a chance to re-hash all that has happened since the last time we allowed them behind the 'curtain'. Thankfully, it is only once, or twice per year. We let them slip in on Labor Day, but that is it. Yeah, I'm looking forward to getting back to swapping some tales of airplanes and comparing notes. After a couple of hours of that, plus a great meal, it is definitely approaching NAP TIME.....!!!
Aahhhhh!! We finally caught the 'weenie' who was making those disgusting noises, some so repulsive that several patrons had to turn off their hearing aids for fear of setting off the room's security alarm, and attracking several of the neighborhood dogs.
In this photo, a few folks are seen taking a much deserved 'break' after a rousing game of 'ROCK, PAPER, SCISSORS'. The official rule book was used quite often to settle disputes as several of the contestants attempted to use unauthorized 'gestures'.
One of Santa's elves was checking on the patrons and cross-checking their names against the police blotter, better known this time of year as the 'naughty or nice' list. Judging from the expressions I can only surmise that some remedial work will be expected before they are allowed to hang up their 'stocking'.
Also, a new rule has had to be written, and 'enforced' regarding the use of 'said stocking' as a 'hand puppet'. Little did any member of the POST 24 staff know, or even realize, that such uses and gestures could be conceived, and employed, by this innocent looking piece of material, then deemed as a form of 'entertainment'.
Pictured above is the aftermath of a brisk game of 'musical chairs' that got out of hand and turned into a knock-down drag-out contact event. This exciting parlor game had provided much fun throughout many years with the AF luncheon. Sadly, a few bad prunes can play havoc with good intentions.
The mere fact that (T.O.T.) TIME OUT TABLES, were set up in advance of the festivities indicates that this 'bunch' is a bit too rowdy. As a result, this form of entertainment will once again be banned from ever being played within the confines of POST 24, or anywhere on POST 24 property.
Plain clothes officers were called to settle some disputes regarding 'VALET PARKING'. A minor 'tiff' broke out when a couple of disruptive drivers were attempting to multi-task while operating 'machinery'. Another example on why texting is so dangerous.
THANKS to all those who worked so hard to make our annual CHRISTMAS PARTY a success!!
JIM, MARTHA, JUDY, PEGGY, CAROL and KATHY. Thank you all so much. Everyone had a great time, the food was outstanding and the wonderful service was excellent.
We will be back again next year, providing the 'authorities' sign off on our request.
There were a couple of snowbirds along with a newby totaling 12 in the hangar. Things got off to a quick start as we discussed all there was to discuss about the B-58 Hustler. What an airplane. Beautiful and sleek. It just became too expensive, plus technology was leaping forward. I would have liked to have known them better.
The newby had been a C-124 pilot, however, I was at the opposite end of the table and didn't get a chance to go into detail with him on some of his harrowing flights......Hey, we're talking C-124 shop, so there was bound to have been a few harrowing flights.
I heard some talk about C-130s, C-47 gunships and C-119s. And discussions were bantered regarding the 4360 engine. What a massive workhorse. It was known as the 'corncob', because it looked like one with its 4 rows of 7 cylinders, each cylinder having 2 spark plugs. Therefore, when someone went to change the plugs on a 4360 they were going to pack a lunch.....56 plugs.
Lunch was served by Kathy, our wonderful server, who knew exactly what I wanted. A big bowl of WBC. To you rookies, that is jargon for 'WILD BILL'S CHILI'. Hey, it was great. It is spicy enough on its own, but I boost it up a bit with my secret recipe..... OUCH.....it will bite ya' if you're not careful.....!!!
We also began talking about our next luncheon.....yeah, I know. Me, too. Well, it's like this. Each year it has become commonplace to invite the 'YOU KNOW WHOs' to share in the AIR FORCE luncheon. Don't know whose idea it originally was, but let's just say it happened and it ain't gonna' unhappen anytime soon. I just bear with it. We have agreed to close the hangar doors to any flying stories and attempt to bond with them. I can at least look forward to our January luncheon when we can get back to talking about IMPORTANT THINGS, airplanes and tall tales....!!!
Again we had 10 who flared out to land for our luncheon on Monday, October 20th. Our 'northern friends' haven't arrived yet, but soon they will. It didn't take long for the tales to begin wagging. Discussions about the KB-50s continued from the last luncheon, along with comparisons to the B-29s. Also, we all remember the undeniable sound of hearing a B-36 flying overhead years ago. What a sound...!! The entire ground would vibrate with that soothing noise. We also coversed about fighters and interceptors, namely the F-4s, F-105s and F-106s. The F-106 was a very powerful delta winged piece of danger. They fact that they were in service during the 'cold war' is the reason we were in a 'cold war'. No one dared challenge this delta-winged monster.
Kathy had my coffee all ready for me as I walked in. Nice to have friends in high places.... If you haven't tried the POST 24 coffee then you are missing out on some very BIG, WAKE UP...!!! It is FRESH and it is GREAT...!!!
I then placed my order for a large bowl of 'WILD BILL'S CHILI'. I had brought along my 'secret additive'. Only one other person asked to use a very small amount to his chili.
I had some HONOR GUARD committments in the afternoon so I had to leave early. But, I can say that when I left everything was still under control. I did tell Kathy to take off the safety wire to the fire hose,....just in case. Ha.
See you again in November. Keep'em flyin'....!!!!
There were 10 flyers who circled and landed for our luncheon on Monday, October 6th. Kathy had my fresh cup of coffee ready for me. She quickly served everyone else their favorite beverage and we were off on our stories. The conversation opened up with a discussion on the B-29s and B-50s and the engines on each, the 3350 and the 4360. They are no longer producing that wonderful sound that is indescribable. Those who have been witness to the starting of those huge powerhouses will attest to the 'experience' of just listening to the coughs and sputters and watching the huge plumes of blue and white smoke belching out of the exhaust pipes. WOW..!!! It still brings shivers just to think of it.
I was asking questions of a WWII flyer, a ball turret gunner on the B-24s. He had been stationed up in the Aleutian island chain. He confirmed what I had recently read about the biggest fear was having to fly through the 'flak'
during missions. I can only imagine what it would have been like to be in that situation. He had 30 missions. I really enjoyed listening to him recall some of the memories he had of those flights. I look forward to our next luncheon to continue.
I figure by the next luncheon a few of the 'snowbirds' will be making their approach. We have had a few of our regular flyers on 'sick call'. Hope they are feeling better by the next one.
POST 24, by a unanimous vote, has brought back 'WILD BILL'S CHILI' and I have been standing in line waiting to get a big bowl. I had it on Monday and it was GREAT...!!!
Well, the hour was approaching 1230hrs. and it could tell some of the flyers were anxious to preflight and head out for their afternoon 'siesta'.
Well, after we sent out for a 'tempest check' for any security breaches following our ordeal with the 'YOU KNOW WHOs' on Labor Day, we once again got down to the business of interesting conversation among members of the AIR FORCE. Yeah, it didn't long to prime the pump to get the stories started on the first turn.
I believe we had 13 flyers shoot an approach and land for lunch. They quickly set the chocks, installed the gear pins and were greeted by our wonderful server, Kathy. Yes, she had my cup of coffee on the table waiting for my arrival. Oh yeah, it's nice to know people in high places..... I have been hearing through the chatter that 'WILD BILL'S CHILI' is now back on the menu, so I was all ready for time to order...!!
We welcomed 3 newbies to the luncheon and listened as they introduced themselves and what they did in the military. We have a very diverse group of airmen who come to our luncheons. A few from WWII, Korea, Viet Nam, Iraq, Bosnia and Afghanistan eras of our country's war history. We have those who were on C-47s, B-47s, C-124s, B-50s, F-104s, F-86s, F-106s, F-4s, F-105s, T-33s, KC-135s, B-26s, B-29s, B-52s, and the list goes on. I truly enjoy just leaning back to listen to all of these gallant warriors recall some of their missions. It is a real treat.
It got eerily quiet as Kathy brought our lunch orders and everyone's priority changed. Oh my....!!!! I was suddenly surrounded by a large bowl of 'WILD BILL'S CHILI'.....!!!! I was rather busy for the next twenty minutes. Yes, I brought my 'secret spice' in anticipation for this moment....
We finally raised our heads out of the trough and continued with the tales we were telling. However, it didn't take too long before I noticed people taking a look at their watches for a 'time hack'. Once it gets close to 1245hrs it is time to remove the pitot covers and rudder locks, turn the prop through a few revolutions and crank it up for a smooth take-off on a short trip to a pleasant nap.......
September 1, LABOR DAY
It is a policy, that with LABOR DAY falling on the first Monday of September, to open the hangar doors and allow the 'YOU KNOW WHOs' in to the inner sanctum of the AF LUNCHEON. Of course, we try NOT to swap airplane stories while they are near. Yeah, I know, a real bummer, but thankfully it only occurs a couple of times a year.
The staff at POST 24 was very cooperative and set up tables in the large auditorium to allow us to be by ourselves all together, if that makes any sense. The regular LABOR DAY festivities were held in the smaller dining room/lounge area. Choice of pulled pork sandwich, hot dawg or hamburger for $5. dollars. What a great deal...!!! I chose the pulled pork and it was delicious...!!! In addition, we had cole slaw and baked beans....Mmmmm.
Below is the only evidence that confirms this function ever existed. The authorities confiscated all photographic images during their 'visit'. Something about 'statute of limitations' regarding those in attendance. They always seem to know when we bring along the 'YOU KNOW WHOs'.......
Pictured above are some of those in attendance in preparation for a brisk game of ROCK, PAPER, SCISSORS. As you can plainly see, the excitement was barely contained by all....Actually, this type of entertainment had been banned for a few years due to some unruly participants, and, judging from the official report it is very likely never to be allowed back in at POST 24, .....EVER..
Another popular game is SHADOW PUPPETS, with this year's theme being, 'WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE'? Certain aspects were taken to a new level never before seen in public, and, hopefully, never again. It didn't take long for some of the 'gestures' to become 'questionable', at best. After several warnings by officials the contest was halted. Again, a fun form of entertainment has been turned into a 'contact sport' complete with the resultant expectations associated with this type of behavior. Yes, you may see it in the upcoming Olympics and it may play well in Peoria, but it will never again be at POST 24....EVER.
These folks had just finished gnawing on a Seratan tablet, then knocking back a shot of Geritol when the authorities were summoned. As to who phoned in the 'raid' is a story for another day. The idea of a 'mole' within the ranks of the AF LUNCHEON has not been completely ruled out. In fact, this photo is on loan from the authorities, which is a copy, while 'metropol' methodically searches for additonal leads to 'persons of interest' that may, or may not, be in the picture. The two individuals at the end of the table are of particular interest.
Finally a photograph of the much talked about lady who serves members of the AF luncheon, KATHY. She is outstanding in taking care of everyone's order quickly and efficiently.
We, as members of the AF LUNCHEON have slowly and methodically weaned her from the stick she used to carry. However, she still carries that little 'taser' in one of the pockets of her apron..... a word to the wise,.....don't doze off and fall into your food. OUCH...!!! That thing hurts....!!!!
Of course, nothing would happen, the ship would not sail, without members of the galley shifting into 'full speed ahead' mode. These are a few of the 'USUAL SUSPECTS' who help turn the light on in the morning, then are there to turn it out at night. Many thanks to all who care enough to make sure.
Note.... No feelings were hurt and no egos were bruised during the creation and execution of this document. The entire website staff is very grateful to POST 24, its members and the general public for all the support. We are also thankful to have a camera handy when we actually find out what folks 'will really do' for a Klondike bar.......
August 4, 2014
There were 13 flyers, including 1 newbie today at the AIR FORCE luncheon. Yes, I admit it, I was a straggler as I showed up at 10 minutes after the hour and the tales were already flying. I quickly reminded them that the tolerance for airspeed and altitude is 10% each time the story is told.
As soon as I pulled up my chair Kathy had a fresh cup of coffee in front of me. Ahh. Perfect. I managed to sneak my order in to Kathy ahead of the others. Tried the famous grilled ham & cheese on marble rye. WHOA…!!! I spent the next ten minutes licking my chops in anticipation.
I began talking to a co-pilot on a B-47, and had been looking forward to learning more about his position on the plane. In addition to the B-47, we discussed the C-124, as there is a crew chief among us. We also have a flight engineer from an Ol’ Shakey, but he was absent today. We talked about the CRJ700 Bombardier, a business jet made in Canada, and at a plant in Connecticut. Beautiful airplane. I have it on my Flight Simulator X and it is a pleasure to fly. I heard some folks on the other side of the table talking about the B-58 Hustler. Another beautiful plane.
As we welcomed a new member into our hangar, we had him give a brief scenario of his AF career, followed by everyone else introducing themselves and a brief history of their AF days. Always interesting to hear the names of all the old bases of years gone by that are now closed, or relegated to the Reserves or the National Guard,…..but don’t get me started on THAT..,.,.,!!!!
So, I learned we had personnel from F-4s, B-47s, B-24s, C-47s, T-33s, C-119s, C-130s, T-6s, F-106s, Convair 440s, and the list goes on and on.
Kathy brought in the lunch selections and all went quiet for several minutes while we all adjusted to multi-tasking….eating while telling stories…. MMMmmm. The food was great, served in a timely manner and fully up to expectations,….and we expect a lot at POST 24.
Now that you have an idea of what goes on, why not lower the flaps and gears and touch down for a wonderful refreshment and some of the best food in the county. We always do some serious hangar flying beginning at 1100hrs. Keep’em flyin’!!!
Monday, July 21st
There were thirteen who dropped by for the luncheon and it seemed that all were loaded up with tales to share. You gotta' keep an eye on this bunch, as they can get out of control very quickly....ha We had a newbie show up. He had been stationed at Lackland in the 'green monster' for the duration of his time in the USAF..... brings back many memories, most of which required advance treatment.....
Several of our 'regulars' were AWOL, so later that day I dropped them each an e-mail to let them know they were missed. Hopefully by next time all will be back 'on the line'. We discussed B-47s, T-33s, B-29s, RB-50s and my bouts with my Flight Simulator X program.
Yes, Kathy was expecting me with a fresh cup of the best coffee in the county. MMMmmm She took everyone's refreshment order as soon as she got out of the 'FOLLOW ME' truck. Didn't take much to get the hangar flyin' cranked up and runnin'. Lunch was great, as always. I changed seats a couple of times to get closer to the action on some stories of interest.
I had an HONOR GUARD committment at 1300hrs. so I kept an eye on the clock, but managed to collect enough evidence, uh, I mean, stories to keep me eager for our next luncheon.
Monday, July 7th
I was excited to attend the luncheon as I had had conflicting schedules for the past two times. We had 13 who circled and landed to join in. After the seat pins were installed, setting the wheel chocks and putting on the pitot covers we all were greeted by Kathy, our very effecient server. She had our refreshments ordered and out to us in record time. I even had a fresh cup of coffee in front of me before I sat down. How 'bout that..?
Well it didn't take long to pick up where I left aff a few weeks ago as the stories came out of the woodwork. We began discussing the various aircraft in the inventory, such as the F-4s, T-33s, F-106s, KC-135s, B-47s, the Russian Tubalov 225, C-47s and B-17s. Yeah, we covered a lot of territory. Every now and then I would have to give someone the ol' eye as I began recalling how high they had flown that misseion the first time they flew it then told about it. ....ha ha. You gotta' watch these rascals or they will jump out of pitch trim in a hurry.
I had brought along my secret ingredient for a big bowl of 'WILD BILL'S CHILI' and daydreaming as to how long it had been since I was surrounded by that wonderful entree. Then Kathy came by and informed me that POST 24 was serving 'cod fingers'...!!!! WHOA...!!!! Time Out...!!! This changes EVERYTHING....!!!!
If you've never had an opportunity to be in the presence of a plate of cod fingers then your life is not quite complete. Put that on your bucket list for sure. They are just that good......no, they are just that GREAT....!!!!! I asked Kathy to put me down for a big plate of their finest. I also ordered a small side salad. MMMmmm. You have gotta' try one of these sometime when you're at POST 24. It is a basic salad, lettuce, cuccumber, tomato, radishes, onion and carrots, plus your choice of dressing. But, to top it off, the plate is ICE COLD.... and the salad is ICE COLD, too. WOW..!! To take it up a couple of notches I sprinkle a bit of my secret ingredient onto it.....and .....BOOM....!! No, you won't find this stuff in the 'boys department'.
Anyway, there wasn't much discussing going on while we ate. There are some wonderful items on the lunch menu, and as I have promised, I do plan on trying them all.... my trouble is that I can't seem to get by the CHILI. Or the SALAD, or the cod fingers, or the fish sandwich on Fridays. Decisions, decisions.....
Back to some serious hangar flying and bringing more aircraft and situations into the mix. It was a fun time listening to some of these warriors talk about their missions. But all too soon, the N-hour came closer and everyone began getting figety about preflighting and heading out. Remove the pitot covers, kick away the chocks, pull the gear and seat pins and make some noise.
Hey, we're doing it all again on Monday, July 21st so mark your calendar and get your IFR cross country flight plan in order so you can stop by and join in.
Monday, JUNE 16th
Again I had HONOR GUARD commitments and had planned on sneaking in about 1245hrs. to grab a cup of coffee and catch a few of the tales being swapped. However, they must have voted to go directly to 'nap time' from the lunch, as there was nobody present when I returned.
Looks like I've got a lot of catching up to do. I'm looking forward to next time as there should be quite a lot of hangar flying going on.
Monday, JUNE 2nd
Although I had an HONOR GUARD committment at 1230hrs. I was able to spend some quality time with members of the AF luncheon. We had 3 brand new members arrive, along with a couple others who had been AWOL for a few weeks. Glad to have them back in the hangar.
Monday, MAY 19th
I had a previous committment and was not able to attend the luncheon. However, I did make a point to stop by the POST a day after to be certain that we had the same staff still on hand, therefore, no one exposed to our 'lunch bunch' had quit, walked off the job, or was terminated for some sort of chaos. I also took a quick trip around back to the large dumptster to see for myself if there was any damaged furniture in the trash. If nothing else, I felt relieved that as far as I can tell the AF luncheon was pretty much 'uneventful'.....and that is a good thing....
Monday, MAY 5th
We had only 8 flyers circle and land for the AF luncheon on Monday. Guess all the snowbirds took off on a cross country trip for the summer.
Not to worry. We’ll keep it all together with our tales from yesteryear. Kathy, our wonderful hostess, had our refreshments all ready for us again. She was quick to perform all the air to air refueling as we swapped new stories, and some that have begun to sound new due to a few ‘alterations’……
Oh yes, I had the chili again. I keep thinking perhaps today is the day,….but, alas. Just the thought of that large bowl of ‘WILD BILL’S CHILI’ in front of me wins me over. The person next to me ordered the grilled ham and cheese sandwich on marble rye. WOW..!! Maybe I’ll give that a try next time,….maybe.
With only a smattering of us present, the number of airplane stories were reduced as well. We did discuss the flying characteristics of the C-47 and T-33. The P-47 was brought up for a brief discussion. That was a beautiful airplane. I still prefer ‘round engines’ and it had a beautiful sound.
The clock reached 1230hrs and the gang began to get antsy to preflight in preparation for their short hop to the nearest couch. We pulled the gear pins, pitot covers and kicked away the wheel chocks and headed out.
We’ll be back again on Monday, May 19th at 1100hrs.
There were 16 in attendance with 1 newbie. He was assigned to B-36s while in the AF. So we got on the B-36s, C-124s, B-47s and the missing jet liner.
Kathy was very efficient in getting all the refreshments ordered and served as soon as she saw us come through the hangar door. Didn't take long for us to begin with the tales. I was listening as a co-pilot on B-47s described a normal mission. Very interesting, as I had never been close to one. It too, never dropped weapons in anger, along with the B-36, but not much is said about that. I did not realize that the co-pilot had so many duties, ranging from the obvious, to shooting the sextant for the navigator, as he was down in the nose in a windowless compartment. The co-pilot also manned the remote radar tail gun by turning his seat around to face aft. He served any food and other items to the pilot and navigator.
I had brought my 'secret ingredient' in preparation for a big bowl of 'WILD BILL'S CHILI'. MMMmmm..!!!Just as I remembered,....DELICIOUS....!!! I happened to notice a good looking ham and cheese sandwich on marble rye......one of these days I will make a detour and have one.
Everyone had a great time and at about 1245hrs they began looking over their preflight manuals. Kick the tires, remove the gear pins and pitot covers and set the heading for an hour of 'nap time'. See you on May 5th.
We had 14 make an approach and land for the luncheon and after chocking and securing their rides the tales began. One newby had been in the Air Police, so we all sat up straight and tried to be on our best behavior. That didn't last long with the first round of 'refreshments'.
I looked over the menu for anything new, but came back to, which I always do, a large bowl of 'WILD BILL'S CHILI'. Hey, if it ain't broke, ....well, you know....
The C-47 was discussed, along with B-52s, KC-135s, T-29s and a few others that got a passing nod. The loss of that Boeing 777 is still in the news so it was a topic of conversation, too.
Things got quiet as lunch was served, then it reverted back to a reasonable noise level with more stories from all the gang. Gotta' watch'em though, as they will try and sneak a few old tales in. Yeah, these rascals really do bear watching......
Keep'em flyin' .....
................................................March 17, There were 13 who landed for our luncheon. I brought in my 'secret recipe' as I had prepared for my usual order of 'WILD BILL'S CHILI'. Don't mean to get ahead of myself now. Kathy took my cup, yes, I brought in my own 'vanity cup' on this flight, and brought it back topped off with fresh coffee.....mmmmm...!! It's the best in town. Didn't take long for a couple of tales to get started. We discussed the missing Boeing 777, a Delta plane that had lost a piece of its wing, and other civilian airplane accidents and incidents. We then got into the military planes. KC-135s, B-36s, C-124s, B-52s, P-47s, F-15s and 'flight simulators'. Always enjoyable to do some hangar flying. I can tell when these fellas start fudging with their numbers.... my ears begin to pop if they go too high and my oxygen mask begins to slide down if they pull too many Gs. Yeah, gotta' watch'em pretty close....ha. Kathy took our orders and soon we were deep in delicious food. As previously mentioned, I had my large bowl of chili. I noticed several others had ordered chili,.....not one of them even asked for a go at my 'secret recipe'. Yes, they had driven down that road before and soon found it a bit too rough for'em. 'Lightweights"...!!!
Well, 1300hrs. rolls around pretty quick when everybody’s having fun. We closed the doors on the hangar and began our preflights, strapped in and called out, ‘CONTACT’. Yes sir, nothing has a higher priority than a well deserved nap…..zzzzzzzz
Keep’em flyin’…..!!March 3,
Fifteen flyers came over, circled and landed for our first AF luncheon in March. Once they had the wheel chocks, pitot covers and gear pins installed, they were met by Kathy who took their refreshment orders. She is very good at that. Didn’t take long for the stories to start coming out.
We discussed A-10s, the twin Otter, Caribou, C-123s, C-130s, KC-135s, F-89s and a host of other aircraft throughout the luncheon. I was at one of the corners of the large tables, so it the discussion of different airplanes changes depending on where one is parked. I try and find someone different with whom to sit so I can learn all the varying tales that are tossed about. Pretty interesting
We ordered at about 1130hrs. I decided on a large bowl of ‘WILD BILL’S CHILI’. You can’t go wrong with that. Yes, I had my secret ‘hot’ additive. Only had one taker this time. They all give me the ‘evil eye’ when I bring that out. You don’t buy this stuff in the ‘boys’ department’……
Chef Jessica and our hostess, Kathy, served us promptly and things got quiet for awhile. It is just that good….mmmm I believe I counted six others who had ordered the chili.
We started with the stories again and thought I recognized a few of them as being told before, but somehow they became a little higher and faster than the last time I heard them. That’s normal for this bunch. You gotta’ keep an eye on these rascals. They’ll let you follow them up through a ‘split S’, then break it off and get in your rearview mirror pretty quick.
It didn't take long before 1300hrs. was creeping upon us and that means time to preflight. Pull the pins, kick the chocks clear and remove the pitot covers and smell that wonderful burnt fuel.....AAAhhhhhhh!!!
AIR FORCE LUNCHEON
There were 16 who circled, then came into the pattern to land for the luncheon. I was able to spend the entire time catching up on what has been going on with these rascals. It’s always a treat to toss out a couple of aircraft types, then sit back and listen to the feedback. Lots of historical memories rise to the surface as I notice the grin on their faces while telling the tales.
Today we discussed the C-124s, B-52s and others. I learned more about the KC-135s and how they were modified to be a receiver as well as a tanker. Pretty interesting stuff. I was trying to imagine flying under and to the rear of another KC while taking on fuel at about 25K doing about 250kts. Takes about 15 to 20 minutes to get a top-off. That sounds like a day’s work….ha
Kathy and Barbara were waiting on us to park, place the wheel chocks, set the rudder locks and find our place at the trough in the FBO. Refreshments were served right away. I had a fresh cup of coffee at my space when I sat down. That’s just how good they are. I saw Peggy a few times assisting. Thanks to all who SERVE. Get it….? Thanks, also, to our wonderful chefs, Jessica and Jim. I saw Sarah in the galley helping with coordinating all that goes on in there. That is a very busy and IMPORTANT place on our good ship.
Well, I spent about 30 minutes yesterday grinding up a new batch of hot peppers in preparation for my large bowl of ‘WILD BILL’S CHILI’. Then, out of the blue I heard someone say, ‘ We have cod fingers today’. WAIT….!! Time out….!!! This changes everything….!!!!!
Oh my….! I hadn’t expected this…!! Similar to the feeling one gets when the IP pulls back #5 throttle and yells----DO SOMETHING…!!!! Oh no,…. the dreaded 7 engine landing…..!!!!
There I was….chili or fish or chili or fish….my mind was going 1000 miles an hour…!!
As soon as I was able to control my hyperventilation, I very calmly stated, ‘I’ll have the cod fingers, please’. Pretty cool, heh…? Here’s a tip…. If you ever are at lunch at POST 24 on a Monday and you hear the words, we have cod fingers, you MUST reward yourself. They are delicious… Another tip,…. on the first or third Monday of the month, always request that your order NOT be the last order of cod fingers. Enough said…..
I chose the garden salad over the fries today. I did sprinkle a little of my hot pepper concoction on it…..Wow.….!!! Talk about a taste explosion. I thought an oxygen tank had blown, or something…!! Won’t try that again without some supervision…
Well, it got to be about 1300hrs. and the gang began looking at their watches while yawning. I knew what that meant. NAP TIME…. Yea, they began preflighting, kicking the wheel chocks out of the way, removing the pitot covers and yelling CONTACT…!! Nothing like the smell of burnt 115/145 avgas and jet fuel…..MMMMmmmmmm.
We’re gonna’ do it all again next month on Monday, March 3rd.
Keep’em flyin’….!!!FEBRUARY 3, I had an HONOR GUARD committment to leave at 1130hrs. so I only managed to peek in on those rascals for about twenty minutes. That was enough for me...!! I had sent a warning down into the galley that I would not be present to stand watch over the 'lunch bunch'. Little did I realize they made preparations by calling in the heavy hitters to assist. I checked in later to learn that all went smoothly. Didn't even have to threaten using the fire hose. Seems they all behaved rather well. Keep'em flyin'...! Can you find WALDO......? Give up...? These are actually a couple of photographs released by the authorities of our recent gathering, better known far and wide as the infamous 'AIR FORCE LUNCHEON'. There were more photos, but I do not think they will see the light of day. The 'feds' seem not to have a sense of humor. There were 20 in attendance on Monday, January 20th. Yes, it was wild, and it was real. In fact, the hostess, waitresses and chef were only on duty after they had signed a waiver. You may notice the absence of any 'YOU KNOW WHOS'. They are invited and only allowed behind the hangar doors on very special occasions. We did have a couple of brand new members to POST 24 who just happened to be AIR FORCE VETERANS, so they were invited to join the action. If you were in the AIR FORCE, then you are eligible to join our flying formation. Bring a couple of stories to share. We do have rules. No story can be told again without being at least 100 mph faster and 1,000 feet higher than before. We have AFSCs ranging from fighter pilots, bomber pilots, navigators, a dentist, a medical weenie, radar technician, APGs, APs, tanker pilot, cargo pilots, and other specialties. It is interesting to sit back with a favorite refreshment and listen to the tales. We order lunch from a large menu. The food is always delicious. Try a large bowl of 'WILD BILL'S CHILI'....! It is just that good on a cold day. Keep'em flyin'...! JANUARY 20, 2014 I put down the flaps and gear at 1055hrs. to find 16 airmen had already arrived ahead of me and were on the flightline tied down. Kathy was busy filling the refreshment orders and when she saw me taxi in she disappeared into the galley and came out with a fresh cup of coffee... ahhh R.H.I.P. I got busy mingling around to all the new faces, to meet and greet, and to find out what each had done in the AIR FORCE. I was in for a treat...! One was an engine mechanic and I did not get a chance to sit with him and learn about his career, but I will next luncheon. I met one man in the office just joining POST 24 and invited him to come into the large room and witness all that goes on at our AF luncheons. He will be back, as he had his 'YOU KNOW WHO' with him. I met another man who is a Legion member up north, so I invited him to join us, as he was alone. I sat next to another man who had some great tales to tell and I spent most of the time just listening intently. Anyway, we discussed F-86s, F-100s, F-101s, F-102s, F-104s, F-105s, F-106s and T-33s. Talk about being in 'hog heaven'....!!! We ended up with 20 flyers at the luncheon, which caused havoc in the galley. However, all went well and everyone had a great time. Jessica, our wonderful chef, was put to the test and came away with flying colors, again. Peggy assisted Kathy with the food orders. Thank you both for a great job well done. Don't know how they all get it done. Well, 1300hrs. came and most began preflighting for their home bases. They all looked like they enjoyed the day swapping yarns and hearing new ones. We'll do it again on Monday, February 3rd. Keep'em flyin'....!!! JANUARY 2, 2014 I had an HONOR GUARD commitment so I showed up at 1245hrs. Good thing, too. The 'lunch bunch' was barely under control. I am amazed the wait staff got through the day. Anyway, I plan on being in place at the next luncheon. I did notice several of the regulars were not present. Hope to have them all back next time. Keep'em flyin'....!
This year’s AIR FORCE ‘CHRISTMAS’ luncheon was another festive one. There were 31 in attendance, that’s counting the ‘YOU KNOW WHOS’. Yea, I know, had to move quite a few planes from the hangar to squeeze’em all in. We had as good of a time as one can have without talking about airplanes.
The lovelies were spending most of the time catching up on all that has gone on since they were last allowed inside the hangar. Sounded like a hen house most of the time.
Our wonderful wait staff, Kathy and Peggy, immediately began taking refreshment orders as each person sat down. Once everyone was relaxed and comfortable they took our meal orders. Talk about a grand slam. I don’t know how they managed. And then Jessica, our outstanding chef in the kitchen, must have thought a bus from Baltimore had broken down out front.
We ordered from the normal menu, which meant that each order was different. And then, to think, that the lounge was open and busy with the lunch crowd, it must have been chaotic. However, we were not aware of it, if is was.
Most everyone brought along something for our dessert. And, therefore, we had plenty of goodies for all. In fact, we gave quite a bit to the staff to share with all who were over in the Foxhole lounge.
I have some pictures, that is, the authorities actually have the pictures. Seems they remember all that happened last year. They said we can have our prints when they get our ‘prints’. I don’t think we’re talking about the same prints.
Anyway, keep’em flyin’…..!
---------------------------------------------------------------Dec. 2, I arrived at 1105hrs. and the tables were packed. Guess they figured the POST was handing out a bunch of FREE stuff today...ha I believe I counted 16 who landed for our luncheon. We had a new one stop by, so it didn't take long for the introductions, then the stories. I warned him that the 10% rule applies to all tales of 'base X'. We had a great time catching up on things....after all, it's been a couple of weeks now.....ha Pictured are the members present who were active duty during WWII. Please be aware, you do not want to get into a story telling contest with any of these characters. They will bury you in front of everyone while ordering a refreshment and charging it to your account. We are trying, as best we can, to get prepared to close the hangar doors and refrain from all the stories on Dec. 16th, for that is when we allow the 'YOU KNOW WHOS' to enter. I know, I feel the same way. What a way to kill a couple hours of quality time. Glad it only happens a couple of times a year..... I may have some pictures to share of the entire bunch. I have already warned the servers of the impending occasion. I'm sure they will 'carry on', as they do a wonderful job taking care of our lunch bunch. Keep'em flyin'....!!!!! Nov. 16, We had twelve who swooped in for the AF luncheon. It has been awhile since I was able to relax and enjoy the friendship of these rascals. No, nothing's changed. The stories were told a little higher and a little faster than the last time, but still within the allowable limits, just barely. I came in with my new 'hat', bright, international ORANGE. Yes, it was a topic of conversation for quite awhile, then Jessica, our wonderful chef must have peeked into the dining room, because she came over to the table begging for a hat like mine. I promised her one the next time I go on a cruise to where I got mine. The things I do and the sacrifices I must make for POST 24.....ha. We got started on airplanes, first were B-57s, a really beautiful plane. We were in deep discussion on how that plane was started. Remember, the black smoke from the cannister of black powder inserted into the front of each engine? And the low roar of the engines spooling up in their starting procedure? Beautiful sight and sounds. Then F-100s, F-101s, RB-50s, F-106s, B-52s, KC-135s, B-26s and the list goes on. Very interesting. We discussed flight simulators, then on to C-47s and T-33s. Never a dull moment. I was all set to order a large bowl of 'WBC', in case you are not aware, that is 'WILD BILL'S CHILI'. It is WILD and DELICIOUS...!!! But, then I heard our lovely server, Kathy, mention 'Cod fingers' and I stalled it out right there. I have had them before and they are GREAT. Only one thing, if the 'fingers' are that large, then I don't wanna' see the fish. They are large, no, HUGE.....and delicious....!!!! Try'em some day. Mmmm!! Got pretty quiet for awhile, then we finished eating and the tales started up again. Yes, I have missed this bunch. It got be about 1250hrs and they gang began preflighting for their flight home. I know I flew VFR direct to 'nap time'. Keep'em flyin'....!! Nov. 2, I stopped in to check on the 'bunch', but again, had another commitment. I did go around and reintroduce myself....ha It has been awhile since I had a big bowl of WB CHILI. I did notice that the wonderful wait staff hasn't changed, so these guys must have been able to stay within the lines....ha I did have a cup of that wonderful POST 24 coffee and noticed a few 'birds' had flown below the radar to get in. Our next luncheon is on Monday, Nov. 18th and I have my order all ready to turn in. Well, keep'em flyin'....!!!! I have been unavailable to join the lunch bunch for the past two months, but my schedule for November will allow me to swoop in for a landing and a large bowl of the world famous WILD BILL'S CHILI. Ahhhhh... I will give you a full report. September 2nd Being that Labor Day and the AIR FORCE LUNCHEON fell on the same day, we felt compelled to invite the 'you know whos'. Of course we must close the hangar doors, promise not to tell any airplane stories and sit around for a couple of hours while 'they' play catch-up on all that has gone on since the last time we allowed them visitation rights. Yea, I know. It's a real bummer, like being grounded. But, it's only a couple weeks until we have our AF LUNCHEON again. Keep'em flyin'.....!!!!!! August 19th There were twelve at the table today and that is counting a 'newbie'. He was a C-97 engine mechanic. Changing plugs on a 4360 is an all day affair. Why, you ask...? 56 spark plugs. That is on EACH engine! We placed the wheel chocks, secured the rudder locks and prepared for another great time. I tried to bring our first timer up to speed on these rascals. I filled him in on the stories and how they are stretched just a wee bit. The only rule is that the airspeed and altitude must remain within 10 % of the value when it was first told. It is a full time job keeping them within the boundaries. We hashed over tales of the F-100s, C-97s, B-47s, F-104s, C-124s, along with some GA aircraft and the airlines. Nothing gets by this bunch. If it's on the news, it is a topic of conversation. Kathy was on her A-game today with much efficiency. She had refreshments for all within minutes after we landed and taxied into our spot. The 'Bingo' light never flashed as she was nearby to refuel one and all. Speaking of 'spots', Diane stopped by and commented on the fact that none of us were in our usual seats. She's sharp, nothin' gets by her. I explained to her that 'musical chairs' is what the gang looks forward to in trying to confuse our servers. Yes, this is not for the lightweights......ha It wasn't long before we were served our lunches. Delicious. Every entre is a wonderful experience in dining. Some ordered the Rueben sandwich. A few ordered the French dip, 'well, excuse me'...! A couple of fellas got the large hamburger. I went back to 'WILD BILL'S CHILI'. Last time I had the fish fingers and they were delicious, but, oh how I long for the CHILI...!! It is just that good. Our next luncheon date is Monday, September 2, which happens to be LABOR DAY. We have made it a plan to invite the 'you know whos' whenever OUR Air Force luncheon falls on a holiday. So...., we close the hangar doors and roll up the flight line for this get together. Yes, I know. A real bummer. I suppose we'll find 'something' to talk about. Anyway, I'll let you know how it went...... eh. Keep'em flyin'....! AUGUST 5th Well, it was nice to be able to attend the AF luncheon. I had not been able to attend the past two. However, I make my approach and before I had even rolled out of the landing I began hearing stories. Upon further review, they sounded 'very' familiar. Yes, they were flyin'em again.....a little higher and quite a bit faster than the last time I heard them. What's new... I went to the edge and peeked over. I heard Cod strips were on the menu. I spent much quality time trying to decide what to do. I thought about asking Pat for a vowel, but I went for the fish fingers. MMMmmm!! The rest of the gang couldn't believe that I had actually ordered something besides the chili, but, it was a wise choice. We conversed about C-124s, F-104s, B-26s, A-26s, B-25s and B-36s. Oh yea, my ears were popping by the time we finished jawboning over all of them. It was a lot of fun, as usual. Our next one is on Monday, August 19th. I had HONOR GUARD committments on both the 1st and 3rd Mondays of July and can only hope the guys were on their best behavior. To this point, I have not been asked to find another place to meet for our luncheons. Whew...! Hopefully I will be able to attend our next luncheon on August 5th and will try my best to maintain some sort of control over this bunch. That is my promise to all the staff.....ha. June 17th. I was running late and was greeted with a fresh cup of coffee from Diane, our waitress, as soon as I stepped into the room. Yes, they know me well enough to know that I love fresh brewed coffee and a large bowl of 'WILD BILL'S CHILI'. I had an HONOR GUARD commitment and was only able to stay for the coffee. However, I managed to get into a good conversation regarding the C-97 and its 4360 engines. They are monsters. They were known as the 'corn cob' engines because there were four rows of seven cylinders. Each cylinder had two spark plugs. Each engine had eighty gallons of oil. The sound of those four engines running at idle was breathtaking. So sad that no one will ever hear them again. Only had eight of us land today, and with my departure at noon I hope Diane was able to maintain control. Gotta' keep an eye on this bunch at all times. I suppose I can read the report tomorrow. Keep'em flyin'....!! JUNE 3rd. We had ten circle for an approach, then land for our luncheon. Yes, the snowbirds have all gone to where snowbirds go this time of year, but that leaves that much more for the rest of us..... Didn't take long after the gear pins were installed and the wheels were chocked for all the stories to start coming out. Oh yea, my ears were popping soon after. Some of the aircraft discussed were the B-36, F-104, P-39, C-124, KB-50, C-123, B-29 along with a few others. It was quite a ride. I believe Kathy knows most of our names by now and everyone had their beverage of choice soon after touchdown. Didn't hear the first fuel warning horn as she pulled right along side for some air to air refueling. The place was a chatter until we gave her our lunch orders, only settled down for a couple of minutes, then back at it again. At 1200hrs. sharp our lunch was delivered and everyone was pleased with their choices. A couple of flyers requested a reuben sandwich, but was informed it was not a menu item today. Didn't take long for Jessica to come waltzing into the room letting them know that they would indeed get their reubens. Talk about some pull....!! Me, I am still with 'WILD BILL'S CHILI'. It is just that good. Well, it began getting serious about that time with everyone chowing down. Plus, it must have given some of these characters an opportunity to re-load. Oh yea, we've had some brave souls who had begun the luncheon with a story, then following a great lunch tried to slip nearly the same one in again. Only this time a little higher and a little faster. Never a dull moment around this bunch. We'll be doing it all again on Monday, June 17th at 1100hrs. Keep'em flyin'......!!!!!
We had a couple of newbies stop by for the AIR FORCE LUNCHEON on Monday. Both were career members, one in administration and the other in the medical field. We have another medical weenie in our group so it didn't take long for them to seek out each other. They must have some sort of 'secret handshake', or something.
I tried to go over the 'rules of engagement' as it applies to conversations among our bunch. The altitude and airspeed of any story may not increase more than 5 percent each time it is told. Gotta' watch this lot. I've had my ears pop and mask slide down off my face more than once trying to keep up with their antics.
Kathy, our very efficient hostess, was quick to take our refreshment orders, never saw the first 'bingo' light go on. She performed all refuelings flawlessly. Once the guys settled in for some serious swapping it was sounding like a chicken house. I made certain I sat amongst the most action, love to hear all the stories. And, with a couple of new flyers with us, every story has to be brought back out into the light of day. Hmmmmm. Some I barely recognized, as they had been 'retouched' so many times......ha.
We ordered our lunch at 1130hrs. which only gave us about 30 minutes before it was served. Noticed quite a few 'specials' for Monday. Yea, they do their best to entice me to try something new, but I am hooked on 'WILD BILL'S CHILI'. MMMMMmmmmm....!!!
1300hrs. came by pretty quick, so we began our preflights, pulling the pins and clearing the props, while looking forward to our next one on Monday, June 3rd.
I had an HONOR GUARD service so did not arrive until around 1130hrs, good thing I did stop by. Peggy was trying her best to maintain control, and as she brought out the lunch orders they did direct their attention to priorities. ha....
I did order a cup of coffee and swap a few stories with some of the flyers. It is always a treat to hear these fellas recall their flying time.
I had to 'scramble' to run some errands so bid farewell to the crew. I can only hope Peggy was able to keep them in some sort of formation until time for their preflights and exit.
We are going to do it all again on May 20th and hopefully I can attend the entire luncheon and get in on all the action.
We had fourteen show up for the luncheon. I made certain I sat at the end, just to keep an eye on this bunch. Diane was our hostess this day and she was very efficient. She knew most of the gang and had the refreshments in place quickly. Everytime someone yelled out 'bingo' she was there with a top off.
No, it didn't take long to get things going with the tales. I think even Diane rolled her eyes at a couple of them.....ha I could feel my oxygen mask begin to slide down with the 'G' forces we pulled listening to a few yarns. Wow....!
Mondays are always a good day for lunch at POST 24. Lots of 'specials' on the menu. Yea, they try their best to entice me to switch over, but Jessica, our resident chef, knows, it's gotta' be 'WILD BILL'S CHILI' for me. MMMmmmm....!!! Things always get pretty quiet when the food is served. These guys become very busy, very quickly.
I learned that one of our group was at one time a radio operator aboard an RB-50. I moved in closer to gather all the info. I could. Just love the sound of those big 4360s. Beautiful airplane. One of our bunch was a pilot on one, I believe. I've tapped him for info. quite a few times on his career. I'm in my element when I can listen to those flying stories. Oh yea, my ears have popped several times during their missions. Whew.....!!!!
Can only handle some much of that before it becomes NAP time. Everyone began preflighting, signing off the 781A forms, pulling the chocks, removing the pitot covers and heading out.
April 1st. No foolin'...... Yes, the AIR FORCE lunch bunch met this morning with fifteen circling to land. Didn't take anyone long to secure the ejection seats, put in the gear pins, slip on the pitot covers and find a place at the large table set up. Also didn't take long for the tales to start flyin'.
Kathy, our lovely hostess, was quick to provide each flyer with their choice of refreshment. She was all set for them when she heard the first 'bingo' called out. I understand some of the fellas attempted to catch her on some April fool prattle, but she quickly switched to 'plan B', thus leaving them in her dust..... Guess you had to be there.
Jessica, the POST 24 resident chef, informed us of some unadvertised specials on today's menu, but I wasn't going to fall for that, especially today. I put in for my 'usual'. Yes, I'm talking 'WILD BILL'S CHILI', and I'm talking about a 'large bowl'.
We covered tales about F-104s, KC-135s, P-38s, P-61s, P-47s, B-26s, A-20s and B-52s. Honorable mention also went to some of the 'weenies' in personnel. Everyone seems to have a lot of fun reminiscing about a time gone by.
Time seemed to fly by, pun intended, and several were beginning to check their watches. Feeling the effects of a nap fast approaching, Kathy pulled all the wheel chocks, rudder locks and pitot covers as everyone cleared their prop in preparation to break the surely bonds until next time.
AIR FORCE LUNCHEON We had fourteen circle and land for our luncheon on MARCH 4th. They seemed to be loaded for bear as they settled in. Peggy, our wonderful server, was quick to take down orders for refreshments. She also was nearby when anyone called out "BINGO'. She sensed the 'low level light' was beginning to flicker. I sat at the corner of the large table, it seems to be a strategic spot to get an order in, first..... It's my secret. I happened to notice a lot of 'chili' orders. Perhaps it was due to the weather. Anyway, with my position I was able to get my order of 'WILD BILL'S CHILI' on the sheet quickly. I also was in a position to get my order served first..... how 'bout that..... That's my secret, too. Oh yea, I brought along my 'bottle of seasoning', as always. No, there were no takers. Someone mentioned that he would not use anything that did not contain a 'label' on the bottle. Hmmm,,......guess I could name it something. How about 'SHAMELESS' .... I heard a couple of stories I hadn't heard previously, or at least, they had been altered to the point of being unrecognizeable. Yea, we get a lot of those on a regular basis. You can bet we always have a couple hours of good times, great food and an opportunity to be around those who thought enough of our country to step forward, raise their hands and offer their lives for her freedom. Well, it got to be 1330hrs. pretty quick and the guys were beginning to preflight, pull the chocks and pitot covers to be on their way. It is amazing how great minds think alike when it gets to be around 2 PM....... NAP TIME......!!!! Keep'em flyin'......!!!!!
We had fifteen fly over, then land this morning. We had a different server, too. Diane, making her debut, guided all of us to the taxi way, then to our respective parking spots.
I managed to put a bug in her ear about this bunch and she was quick to gain control and maintain it throughout the luncheon. She had the refreshment orders written down along with each name and served everyone within a few minutes of our arrival.
Right away my ears began popping with some of the stories being shared. It's as though I have heard them, but the 'figures' always seem to be a bit different....
I had brought my 'secret solution' and a couple had their eye on it. Of course, I ordered 'WILD BILL'S CHILI', as did several others. But only one other person was willing to step forward and partake of my 'secret solution'. Yea, I learned there are a few lightweights who like chili.......
All in all we had a great time getting together and look forward to the next time. That next time will be March 4th. After we did our walk around and a quick preflight, it was time to take off for a much deserved nap...... Keep'em flyin'.....!
I had a previous commitment and was unable to attend, but I have since then seen Rosa, so I know she made it through unscathed. I trust she was able to maintain control of this lot. I consider no news good news when I leave them to their own devices.