The radio crackles, “Cherokee Six, rock yer wings and rock ‘em good.” Jim Kren ignores the command. We’re no Cherokee Six. Is the controller looking at another airplane?
The sky is lousy with traffic converging on one tiny airport Too many planes for back-and-forth radio chatter. Special rules apply. The controller spots incoming with binoculars and radios his instructions—the pilots respond in a kind of airborne sign language. Keying your mike is tantamount to declaring an emergency.
Jim can comply. He can bide his time. Either is dangerous if he’s wrong. Aviation is full of moments like that. The entire air transport system won’t function unless responsible people break the law in just the right way.