Galley Gossip: Slam clickers, Bob the singing pilot & Laughlin, Nevada

So what do slam clickers, Laughlin, Nevada, and Bob the singing pilot all have in common? Not much. But I’m determined to link them all together in order to show you a photo gallery from my husband’s recent trip to Laughlin, Nevada and a funny video of Bob, the singing pilot, at a nightclub in Paris on a layover (at the end of this post). I can do this. Really I can.

A few months ago when my husband told me he wanted to ride his Harley to Laughlin for some biker thing called River Run, I said, “Okay.”

“I’ll be gone for four nights,” he clarified, looking me intently in the eye.

“That’s fine. I don’t care,” I said, because I didn’t care. I mean what’s not to love about having the entire house to myself for four days straight? “Just stay out of trouble,” I added, because it seemed like an important thing to add.

“Are you sure?” he asked, still studying my face for signs of what, I don’t know.

“Yes! Go! And have fun!” I demanded, and I meant it, too. I did! If he wanted to take a few days to get away, I had no problem with that. I think everybody should be able to take a few days and get away. It does a marriage good. But then I reminded him, “Just stay out of trouble!” Not that he would get into any trouble, he’s not a troublemaker, but lord knows I didn’t want to have to load my son into the mommy mobile and drive down there to save him.

All of this talk about getting away reminds me of a quick four-day Carnival Cruise trip I took to Mexico out of Florida with an old boyfriend many years ago. I’ll never forget sitting at the dinner table surrounded by three other couples we had just met. We were all the same age – in our late twenties. When I happened to mention that I was a flight attendant, one of the wives said, “I always wanted to be a flight attendant. It sounds like a lot of fun.”

Before I could tell her that it was, indeed, a lot of fun, she added, looking longingly at the man sitting beside her, “But I really can’t imagine being away from my husband for more than a night. How do you do it?”

I just smiled. There was nothing else to say.


Flight attendants are an eccentric bunch. There’s no doubt about it, we’ve got all kinds working for the airlines. But if there’s one thing we all have in common, it’s the ability to be alone – for more than a night. And the ability to enjoy being alone. As well as allowing the ones we know and love a little space and time to themselves. So when my husband jumped on his bike and roared away, I didn’t resent him for doing so. Just the opposite. I was glad he could get away. He deserves to have a little fun now and then. Without me.

Don’t get me wrong, I love spending time with my family and my family loves spending time with me, but we also love our time alone. When I’m working, I cherish those ten hour layovers. That’s me-time. It’s the only time I ever get six hours of uninterrupted sleep without hearing the pitter patter of little feet at wee hours of the night. It’s also the only time I don’t have to watch another episode of Law and Order. That’s right, it’s HGTV for me, baby! All. Night. Long. And there’s nothing like being able to read a good book in bed without someone ordering me to turn off the light! Which is why when I get to my hotel room, I don’t ever leave. I’m what they call a slam clicker.

Urban Dictionary defines it best…

SLAM CLICK – 1. To go into a room and lock the door. 2. The noise the door makes as one shuts the door and locks themselves in. A term specifically used by (but not limited to) flight crews after finishing a trip and checking into the hotel for a layover. It indicates those members of the crew that go directly to their rooms and don’t go out later with the rest of the crew. I was so exhausted that day, I slam-clicked. I’m a slam-clicker. In fact, I’m slam-clicking it tonight

I’m not the only one who slam clicks. First Officer Kent Wien of Cockpit Chronicles wrote about his Slam Click Layover.

“Slam clickers are just introverts who simply need to recharge,” The Savvy Navigator said when I confessed my dirty little secret. I say dirty because no one likes a slam clicker. Including me. Which explains why I joined crew members against slam clickers a few months ago after First Officer Bob, the singing pilot, sent me the link via Facebook. I was just too embarrassed not to join, even though I had no business joining, not when I have a two year-old at home.

Now here’s a video of Bob (not slam clicking) on a layover in Paris singing a song he wrote, Pilot Rest Seat Lap Dance. Enjoy

Mad Doggy Dog – Pilot Rest Seat Lap Dance

Photo (Laughlin) courtesy of Cobalt123

Europe’s top 10 motorcycling roads

I am the first to admit that I find Europe’s quaintness annoying sometimes. All the picturesque towns and medieval city centers can get old, figuratively speaking.

However, I will probably never get tired of Europe’s winding roads. You’ll hardly find a better place to motorcycle. If I could define the best globalization has done for me, it would have to involve a Harley Davidson on a European road in Italy somewhere, drinking French wine and eating Thai food. Shallow, but very satisfying.

I was happy to see that The Guardian has come up with a list of best motorcycling roads in Europe.

Top 10 motorcycling roads of Europe:

  1. The Cat and Fiddle run – A537, Buxton-Macclesfield, England
  2. The Amalfi Coast Road – Naples to Salerno, Italy
  3. The Transfagarasan Highway – Sibiu to Curtea de Arges, Transylvania, Romania
  4. Bergen to Geiranger, Norway
  5. Trabzon to Savsat, Eastern Turkey
  6. Furka Pass, between Gletsch and Andermatt, Switzerland
  7. A2, the Antrim coast road, Northern Ireland
  8. Bar in Montenegro to Sarajevo in Bosnia
  9. Saranda to Vlora, Albania
  10. Cabo de Gata to Granada, Spain

I want to go now.

Made in America

Anyone nostalgic for a slice of Americana, MSN published a list of the Most Iconic US Brands:

  1. Louisville Slugger Baseball Bats
  2. Wonder Bread
  3. Harley-Davidson
  4. Benjamin Moore Paint
  5. The Frye Co Leather Boots
  6. Gibson Guitars
  7. Crayola Crayons
  8. Stetson Hats
  9. KitchenAid Mixer
  10. Lodge Cast Iron Skillets
  11. Ford Pick Up Trucks
  12. Woolrich Blankets

It would be interesting to see how foreigners would vote on the most iconic US brand. Something tells me we would see Coca-Cola and Campbell Soup on the list, too. As a European, I say that Wonder Bread would not make that list. I am sorry but Wonder Bread is simply not bread. Bread is not supposed to be stored in a fridge and last for weeks!

My vote goes, no question, to Harley Davidson. That is the single best American product, period. But that’s coming from a biker chick who likes real, fresh bread.

Motoring the Deep South

Sticking with my recent motorcycling theme, I wanted to plug another ride-of-a-lifetime. You’re not limited to exotic, foreign locales for motorcycling adventures. Fantastic times can be had right in the ole U.S.of A., by renting a bike from Eaglerider.

Obviously, I don’t recommend this for those with no motorcycling experience (especially not a 88+ cubic inch H-D), but Eaglerider is a franchise of Harley-Davidson rental shops around the U.S. (and two locations in Europe and one in Mexico too) with one central reservation facility online. You can rent for as little as one day, for approximately $130/day.

One of my all-time favorite trips was a 4-day excursion, starting out in New Orleans. Covering most of southern Louisiana, and tooling all the way up to beautiful, antebellum Natchez, MS, (stay at the Dunleith!) was awesome on a beautiful, black, H-D Heritage Softail Classic that was a mere month old. (Unfortunately, Al Gomez’s Eaglerider shop in N.O. was wiped out by the hurricane, but we’re hoping he reopens soon!)

Interestingly, Al told us that people came from all around the world to rent motorcycles and tour the South. Even folks from Germany booked months in advance. Their bike of choice? Not a Beemer, but the dream bike for the big, straight, flat American road: the Harley-Davidson.