Once upon a time in the land of OOH Blah Dee there lived an aircraft mechanic who worked for an airline. One day the mechanic met and fell in love with a beautiful stewardess and he pursued her. Eventually the beautiful stewardess succumbed to the aircraft mechanic's charm and they were married and lived happily ever after. The story of my life? Not!!
I'd been working for North Central Airlines for just a little over three years when I met Patti Anne Manis. One look at her smiling face and I fell ass over tea kettle in love with her. I asked her for a date and she said yes and we set it up for her next day off which was two days away.
For the next two days I was walking on clouds in anticipation. I showed up at her door only to find a note taped to it.
"Bob – I was called in to cover a DTW to ORD overnight. Sorry. Call you when I get back."
I had worked at the airline and had known stews long enough that I should have been prepared for it, but I wasn't. Patti was only four months out of training so she was on what was called 'reserve.' What that meant was that she didn't have enough senority to bid for regular trips – called blocks – so she was basically a substitute and would cover for anyone who called in sick, went on vacation or couldn't cover their own block for some reason.
The next evening she called me to let me know that she was back and we made a date for my next days off which were three days away. Again I found a note taped to her door telling me that she had been called in. We made four dates before we were able to connect. The night was magical for me. We talked over dinner and danced a lot and I was absolutely lost in her deep blue eyes.
Given her reserve status and the fact that I worked the afternoon shift with rotating days off made it hard for us to connect. For those who don't understand rotating days off they way they work is one week you have Mon/Tues off and the following week your days off are Tues/Wed and then Wed/Thurs, Thurs/Fri and so on.
Anyway, with my day off schedule and Patti's reserve status we were only able to date eight times over the next five months. With each date I fell deeper and deeper in love with her. Then we hit a spell where we were able to see each other two or three times a week for a couple of months and Patti seemed to feel towards me what I felt for her.
We had been making out since our sixth date and while I wanted more I sensed that Patti didn't so not wanting to scare her off I had pretty much behaved myself. One night in the middle of the two and three times a week period I was fixing dinner for Patti and myself in my apartment. I was at the sink rinsing the pasta for the Linguini Alfredo I was making when Patti came up behind me and put her arms around me. I turned around to kiss her and found her standing there stark naked. Before I could say a word she put a finger to my lips, whispered "Shush" and then led me to the bedroom.
Patti was not a virgin, but then neither was I. She helped me undress and then knelt in front of me and captured my cock with her mouth. She worked on it for a couple of minutes and then stood up and got on the bed. She spread her legs wide, smiled up at me and said:
"Come on baby; I've been wanting this for months now."
I got on the bed and surprised her by going down on her instead of just climbing on. I worked on her for several minutes until she grabbed a handful of my hair and pulled me up while saying:
"Fuck me damn it; fuck me!"
She was wet and I had no trouble in getting in. She wrapped her arms and legs around me and hung on while I did my best to get her off before I got myself off. It was close but I managed and then I rolled over and had her on top as I slowly went limp. When she got off me she asked:
"Why did we wait so long?"
"I was just stupid I guess."
"We have to make up for lost time" she said as she moved down and took me in her mouth. We never did get back to the Linguini.
From that night on Patti and I made love every time we got together. Six more months went by and I asked Patti to marry me and she said no. She said she loved flying for a living and wasn't ready to give it up just yet.
"Maybe" she said, "After I've gotten some seniority and have held a block of my own for a while I'll be ready to settle down."
I was bummed, but at least she had left the door open for later.
A year went by with the two of us getting together every time we were off at the same time. I asked her to move in with me and she said no. She said that the off the wall hours when they called her for trips would keep me from getting rest. It was reasonable so I accepted it. Another year went by and because of resignations and retirements Patti moved up the seniority list until she was finally able to bid and hold a block of her own.
It was the beginning of the end for Patti and me.
The block she had overnighted in Chicago and at first there was no change in our relationship, but gradually I began to see less and less of her on our shared days off. Then one day she asked me to meet her at the Landing Strip Lounge which was a bar close to the airport.
She was already there sitting in a booth when I got there. I leaned in to kiss her and she turned her head away.
"What's wrong" I asked as I sat down next to her.
"This is hard Bob and I'm really sorry, but I can't see you any more. I've met someone, fallen madly in love with him and I'm going to marry him."
I did the only thing I could think of under the circumstances. Without a word to her I got up and walked out of the bar. It would be six years before I saw her again.
Six months later I was sitting in the employee cafeteria in the main terminal building when Alice Dean sat down at the table with me. Alice had been one of Patti's two roommates. She asked me how I was doing and I told her I was getting along okay. She asked if I was seeing anyone and I told her that I didn't have anything going; that I dated some but wasn't seeing anyone on a steady basis.
"It was a shame what Patti did to you and Marsha (Patti's other roommate) and I wanted to tell you, but we could never work up the courage to do it."
"Tell me what?"
"That Patti was just using you until she could get what she really wanted."
"Using me? What did she really want?"
"To marry a captain or a first officer about to become a captain. She said that was where the money was. That they made more than a lowly mechanic ever would."
"A lowly mechanic?"
"She was talking money Bob. A mechanic doesn't make near what a captain does. She did care for you and more than once she said that she would marry you in a heartbeat if you could give her the life she wanted."
"Gee Alice, that sure is good to know."
"Just don't let it sour you on stews Bob. We all aren't like Pat."
"Not me Bob; I'm more than happy with Allen, but Marsha would say yes in a New York minute if you were to give her a call and Barbra Brick has said more than once that she wished she could find a guy like you. I'm having a party Friday night. How about you coming over?"
I went to Alice's party and I had a good time. I did ask Marsha for a date, she said yes and we did have a good time, but after a half dozen dates we realized that although we liked each other there was no real spark between us.
Next I dated Barbra Brick. She gave it up on the second date and we saw each other for a little over a year. She let me know, when she sensed me getting serious, that she wasn't the marrying kind.
"If I was Bobby I'd snap you up in a second, but the sad fact is that I'm pretty much a slut. I like cock, but I like different cocks. I've already stayed with you longer than I have with any other guy, but I'm starting to crave something different. The man I marry would have to be a very understanding guy who would put up with my straying as long as he knew that I would always come back to him. You and I both know that you aren't that guy and it's a crying shame because in all other respects you are the kind of guy I want."
"So how long have I got?"
"A couple of weeks, a month or maybe two. I haven't met him yet, but he is out there."
I actually made it three and a half more before she told me that she had found my replacement. I wished her well and moved on with my life.
The next girl I hooked up with was also a stew low on the seniority pole. I went through the same kind of relationship with Carol that I'd had with Patti before Patti finally got a block of her own and one night when I showed up for a date with Carol and found the note on the door I said "Fuck this shit! No more stews!"
Working afternoons and getting off shift at eleven-thirty didn't leave much of an evening to do anything with so I had gotten in the habit of stopping at The Landing Strip after work with a couple of the guys I worked with.
There were three girls working there at the time. Karen was the barmaid and Cookie and Tina were the waitresses. All three were hard on generators and all were constantly being hit on, but I never did see anyone get anywhere with any one of them. I got along well with all three and on slow nights Cookie or Tina would sit and talk to me.
One night about a week after I had found the note on Carol's door I was sitting at the strip and I guess I must have looked a little out of sorts because Tina sat down with me and said:
"Why so glum chum?"
I don't know why I did it, but I told her about my lousy luck at having a love life. She laughed and said:
"You should have talked to me sooner. I would have warned you to stay away from stewardesses."
"Why would you have done that?"
"Because I used to be one sweetie. Four years for Ozark. The job was supposed to be fun and exciting and maybe it was if you years and years of seniority, but if you were on the low end of the totem pole you couldn't have a life for shit. Even if you built up enough seniority to bid and hold your own trip section someone with higher seniority could bump you off of it if they decided that they wanted it."
"That doesn't sound like it makes sense. If they had the seniority why didn't they bid for it in the first place?"
"Flight crews bid on a different schedule and sometimes stews follow certain captains or first officers. Say I bid the Memphis to Dallas run on the first of September and got it and on the fifteenth Captain X or First Officer Y bid that block and Sue Smith had a thing going with one of them. If she had seniority she could bump me off the block and I'd end up going back into the reserve pool until the next stew bid cycle. I finally got tired of it and quit. You need to find a girl with a steady job and steady days off."
"How do I do that working afternoons three to eleven-thirty? Not many places to find girls in the mornings and by the time I get off work at night all the girls have gone home."
"What am I? Chopped liver?"
"You? Why would I hit on you? I've seen you turning down guy's right and left ever since I started coming in here. I don't believe that there has been a night I've been in here that some guy hasn't tried to hook up with you."
"And all of them have a snoot full and half are married and are out looking to cheat and the other half are single and are looking for one night stands. Neither of which I am interested in. I will not allow myself to go out with some clown who flirts with me and tries to cop a feel whenever he can. Face it Bobby; very few of the men who come in here are the type I'd be interested in."
"That brings up the question that given what you've just said why would you consider me?"
"You have been coming in here now for almost three years and not once in that time have you made a lewd or suggestive remark; you have never been anything other than nice and polite and even though I have seen you looking at me appreciatively you have never stepped over the line." She laughed and then said, "Plus, you tip better than average."
"Aha!" I said, "You want me for my money."
"Don't be silly. You are an aircraft mechanic. You make good money, but a Daddy Warbucks you ain't."
"You got me there. I might not be in the bucks, but I'm not stupid. You just opened a door I'd be a fool not to walk through. Would you like to go out with me on your next day off?"
"That would be this coming Sunday."
"What does that mean?"
"My days off this week are Friday and Saturday. I won't have a Sunday off until the weekend after the one coming up."
"That's right; I'd forgotten that you blue duck guys have rotating days off."
"Blue duck guys?"
"That's the tail emblem on your planes right? A blue duck in a circle?"
"I've never heard us called blue duck guys before."
"I'd love to go out with you Sunday after next."
It was on our third date that Tina set me straight.
"I want a steady boyfriend Bob, but at this point in my life I'm not interested in getting married. I became a stewardess because I have a bad case of wanderlust and I'm always wanting to go places and do things and flying all over met that need. I don't fly anymore, but I still have that urge.
"I don't know if you have noticed or not, but I occasionally disappear for a month or so. I'm a damned good cocktail waitress so Joe always holds my job open for me. Plain and simple Bob I am not a settle down and be a wife and mommy kind of girl. Can you handle a friends with benefits relationship with a girl like that?"
"Friends with benefits? What benefits?"
"That comes when you take me home tonight."
If I had any doubts that I might not be a friend's with benefits kind of guy the night with Tina cured me of that. The woman flat out loved sex! We undressed each other and then she went down on me. I returned the favor and then she pulled me up and told me:
"Do me hard bobby; do me hard."
I got us both off and she swung around into a sixty-nine and when she had me up she had me do her doggie. I got us both off again and then she went down on me again. It took her a while to get me serviceable and when she did she said:
"Anal this time Bobby; fuck my butt."
She rode me hard that night and put me up wet. No way was I not going to be her FWB from that night on.
Tina and I settled into our FWB relationship and for the next three years we kept steady company. It wasn't always easy with her days off being Sunday and Monday and me only having Sat/Sun, Sun/Mon and Mon/Tues every four weeks, but I did pick her up when she got off work two or three nights a week.
I got tired of renting an apartment and getting nothing but a collection of rent receipts so I went looking and found a nice three bedroom house with an attached three car garage and became a home owner. I asked Tina to move in with me, but she said no.
"I like my independence Bobby. What we have is perfect for me and I don't want to change any part of it."
Every six or seven months or so Tina would disappear for anywhere from two weeks to a month and when she got back she would tell me all about where she had gone. I kept telling her that we could go on trips together since as an airline employee I had pass privileges, but she always told me that she needed her alone time and her trips gave her that.
And then, almost three years to the day when we first got together, Tina came back from a month in Tempe, Arizona and told me that we couldn't see each other any more.
"I met a guy Bobby and I swear to God sparks flew when we looked at each other. I'm moving there to be with him. I know its sudden Bobby, but I'll do my best to ease the pain."
She gave her two weeks notice and then spent the two weeks trying to fuck me to death. And then she was gone.
For a couple of weeks I just worked and went home. I just couldn't work up any interest in going out and looking for female companionship. I still stopped at the Strip for a few brews with the guys and Gloria, the girl who took Cookie's place when she got married and quit, and who knew of my relationship with Tina let me know, subtly, that she wouldn't mind being Tina's replacement. Gloria was a very sexy looking lady and I was considering taking a shot when out of the blue my life took a sudden turn.
Three guys I worked with and I closed the Strip, stopped at the Town and Country for a bite to eat and headed on home. When I got there I found a car parked in my driveway. It was a top of the line Lexus SUV and it was parked in the middle of the drive. I couldn't get around it to get in the garage so I parked in the street. As I was walking up the driveway the car door opened and Patti Anne stepped out.
I stopped and looked at her and wondered what she was doing in my driveway at four in the morning. She walked up to me, threw her arms around me and kissed me. She stepped back and said:
"And then some" I said.''
"Invite me in for a cup of coffee or a drink and some conversation?"
I was half tempted to say "Fuck no!" but she still looked as good to me as ever and I was curious so I told her to come on in. I offered her coffee or a beer and she chose coffee so I put a pot on and while we waited for it to brew I asked her what brought her to my driveway.
"I wanted to stop by and see if I could correct a huge mistake."
"A huge mistake? And what would that be?"
"My leaving you for the ass wipe that I married."
"Ass wipe? You said you met someone and fell madly in love with him. You fell in love with and married an ass wipe?"
She took a deep breath and then said, "I didn't actually tell you the truth there. I wasn't madly in love with him. I liked him; I liked him a lot, but I didn't love him like I loved you. The thing was that he was a high seniority captain making almost a hundred thousand a year. I grew up poor and getting by on hand me down's from my two older sisters and I wanted the good life. To be blunt about it I wanted the life you could never give me on a mechanic's pay. Jim was hot for me and tried like hell to get me so even though I loved you and only liked him I let my greed lead me away from you."
"And you are back here why?"
"Because I've never forgotten you. When I divorced Jim and came home I found out that you weren't married and after several months of trying to work up the courage I finally managed to get myself over here."
"So just what is it you are after Patti Anne? Forgiveness for shitting on me?"
"Frankly I was hoping for more than forgiveness. I want a chance to get you back."
"Why? I'm still a lowly mechanic making lowly mechanic's wages and I don't see that ever changing."
"I found out that living the good life with an asshole didn't even come close to what we had before I let greed get in the way. All I'm asking for is a chance Bob, just a chance."
Call me stupid, call me and idiot, call me a sucker, but I had been hopelessly in love with Patti Anne and I'd never forgotten her or completely gotten over her. Every place I went I'd been there a time or two with Patti and when I went there I would remember having been there with her.
I gave her the chance she asked for.
We didn't just jump back in bed, but dated as we worked at reconnecting. On our third date Patti told me:
"I didn't tell you earlier because I didn't want to scare you into not giving me a chance, but I come with baggage. I have two children. Roberta and Rachel. They are twins and yes, before you even have a chance to think about it Roberta is named after you."
"Your husband stood still for that?"
"He didn't know. I never told him about you. He thinks I picked out the name because I liked it."
"Why would you want to name one of your children after me?"
I know it will sound stupid after the way I left you, but I wanted to have something of yours with me and your name was all I could come up with."
"You have never said, but how did this captain you didn't love but really liked become an ass wipe?"
"He played around on his overnights and brought me a case of gonorrhea. We worked through it and he swore that he would never cheat again and nine months later he brought me home another STD and that's when I called it quits."
Two weeks later I met Roberta and Rachel. They were identical twins and I could barely tell them apart. They were cute little girls and fairly well behaved for three year olds. I took an immediate liking to them and they seemed to like me.
Patti Anne and I reconnected and our seventh date ended up in my bedroom. I remembered all of her buttons and managed to push them and she remembered mine. After that night our dates on my nights off always ended up in that bedroom. We rarely got together when I got off work at eleven-thirty because Patti couldn't find a babysitter that could stay that late.
At the sixth month mark the inevitable happened and I asked Patti to marry me and she said yes and we set a date.
In her divorce Patti had gotten primary custody of the girls and her husband got ample visitation rights. He did care for the girls so he did take them often even though he had to fly in from Minneapolis to do it. He got them for one weekend a month, every other holiday and for three weeks during the summer although Patti let him have them whenever he wanted them.
"You know how flight schedules used to be for me" she explained, "and he has the same limitations so a set schedule to take the girls isn't possible."
He would fly in, take the girls for three or four days and then he wouldn't see them again for maybe a month. Patti somehow managed to get him to take them for two weeks so we could honeymoon in Cabo San Lucas. We had a glorious time and hated to head back home.
We settled in and began our life as a married couple. It was great! I loved waking up with Patti next to me and as with most newly weds we made love like a couple of very horny rabbits. She would be waiting and ready for me when I got home from work and three or four times a week we would wake up in the morning and go at it again.
Things went along smoothly and then the twins were old enough to start school. With them gone Patti looked for a job that would allow her to be at home when the girls got home from school. She found one and the next five years slid by.
North Central was a union shop and one of the things that the union had worked into its contract was overtime rules. The way it worked was that a list was made up in order of seniority and when overtime came up it was offered to the first man on the list if he accepted it or turned it down he was charged with the hours and the next time that overtime came up it was offered to the next man on the list and then so on until the last name on the list worked overtime and then you went back to the top of the list and started over. This kept the overtime equal between everyone.
Overtime wasn't a regular thing and the airline tried to avoid it since it was time and a half for the first four hours and double time for anything over four. While it was avoided if possible there were times when they had no choice. One day I got a call at home. I was on my first day off and I was next up on the overtime list. One of our Convair 580s was on the ground at Traverse City and needed an engine change. Traverse City was not a maintenance station so a crew was being sent from Detroit. I took the overtime, packed a quick bag, left a note on the kitchen table for Patti and headed for the airport. I'd be gone overnight and would get back on the 3:15 flight the next afternoon.