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PALM LATITUDES

L.a. Speak

July 11, 1993|Kathleen Moloney

Ah, airport communications--if the garbled p.a. system doesn't confuse you, the staff slang will. A selection of LAX lingo: blue ice: n . waste water discharged from aircraft during flight. "Get those passengers out of the WC or we'll have blue ice floating in Burbank swimming pools." 50-yard line: n . used to describe the halfway point on the taxiway connecting the south to the north complex of LAX. "Once we get clear of the 50-yard line, I'm taking a nap." fod: n . foreign object debris on the runway. guppy: n. nickname for the short and stubby Boeing 737. SYN: Fat Albert. "Southwest Airlines has a fleet of guppies. " h.r.: human remains or caskets packed in special shipping containers. "We can't find the h.r. we picked up in Cincinnati." pawob: n . passenger arrived without baggage. "We had four pawobs on that Rome flight." Smuff City n. nickname for Sacramento Metropolitan Field (SMF) airport. "We're heading for Smuff City on a turnaround." non-rev: n. non-revenue, a person traveling for free, usually an airline employee. "The non-revs are always the last ones on the plane." wing rash: n . scratch on a wingtip; can be dangerous. "If that wing rash gets any worse, I'm sending this Fat Albert in for maintenance." wing walker: n . ground crew staff member who walks under the wings and directs the staffer signaling the pilot. "Where's the wing walker ? I'm ready to pull out."

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