A little over a week ago I wrote What Does The Future Hold For Young Airplane Geeks?, this post lead to some interesting discussions, and an email I received from Lynn Young, from Delaware, who asked, “This may be an impossible question, but how does one end up an airplane geek? My young daughter is fascinated with everything about them. This fascination goes back as far as we recall and it certainly didn’t come from either of her parents.”
Lynn, your question is one probably without any defined answer. I can tell you how I likely ended up an airplane geek, but I think most serious enthusiasts have their own stories to tell. I have frequently written about growing up at the end of a runway at New York’s JFK International Airport. From the earliest age I recall … or anyone who knows me recalls … I have always been fascinated with airplanes, spending hours just staring up at the sky watching anything with wings go by. When the Concorde on short-final is a frequent alarm clock, it is not hard to fall in love with airplanes.
While many sit outside and watch airplanes or have to travel to an airport to go plane spotting, all I had to do as a kid was look out the window or sit under the skylight. Many nights of my youth were spent listening to an old radio tuned to JFK’s Tower as I looked out the window counting the moments between hearing an airport bid the airport’s tower farewell and then watching them fly over my house.
All to frequently I knew I was up to late watching planes when I’d hear the Japan Airlines Cargo flight depart and watch it climb overhead. The JAL Cargo 747 disappearing over the horizon was a sure sign that I’d have trouble waking up for school in the morning.
So , while I have a good idea of how I ended up an Airplane Geek, this hobby and lifelong interest was not shared or brought on by my parents, is only shared by one of my two brothers and none of my friends in growing up were excited to watch the planes fly overhead
I’d love to know how other airplane geeks ended up as airplane geeks … if they even know how they got hooked on airplanes. If you’re an airplane geek, aviation geek, plane spotter … whatever you call yourself … let me know how you got hooked on things with wings,
Below are a few photos shot last weekend from the front lawn of the house I grew up in … they should give you a good idea of how I ended up as an airplane geek.
Oh … and first person to properly identify all the aircraft types in the photos, in order, wins a prize!