Stories Under the Tail: Anecdotes from the Life of a Pilot by Captain Zeno Singer
Stories Under the Tail: Anecdotes from the Life of a Pilot is the memoir of author Zeno Singer’s experiences as a professional pilot. Covering several decades, Singer highlights the highs and lows of being a pilot. Singer visits some incredible places and immerses himself in different cultures. His detailed adventures may give some readers the itch to travel. Still, he does not skip over the sadness of fatal accidents or spare the reader the details of some unfortunate bowel accidents experienced by guests onboard a plane. Broken down into short stories, Singer comically introduces the reader to some interesting people. In one story, Singer tells of a pilot who control thinks is drunk and trying to fly a plane, when in reality the man is stone-cold sober. In another section, Singer introduces the touching story of the hopeful Georgina, a Greek woman who believes St. Michael is constantly watching over and providing for her. Because he balances the positive and the negative, the book is extraordinarily humanistic.
Singer’s book is broken down into quick stories so it’s easy to pick up for rapid reading. His best stories, the ones given the most detail, are the comical ones. The stories about the pilot’s mistresses and one about a prank played on a new flight attendant that caused the captain to fall out of the plane through the toilet are very amusing. Some of the stories are less enthralling and that may be in part that some of the terminology becomes a bit burdensome. Singer sometimes throws in terms or abbreviations related to the airplanes without explaining them or waiting to explain them later in the book. Overall, Singer’s book is an entertaining read for anyone who loves to learn about the world and is interested in stories about real people’s lives.
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