Why writing for AOPA is a big deal

11:31 PM

By Dan Pimentel,
Airplanista Blog Editor

is all I can say.

The feedback from my first piece on aopa.org about AOPA's Favorite Aircraft Challenge has been really wonderful. I am hearing things like "Dan, you are REALLY having too much fun with this." Truth is, I AM having too much fun, on many levels. This is sort of a dream assignment, with front page billing on the most important aviation website in the world. And I am grateful to (a) the universe and (b) the AOPA eMedia team for landing this gig in my lap. One story on AOPA.org would be mind-blowing, but one story each day for nearly three weeks?

I might just be in journalism heaven.

I have to tell my one big AOPA tale for you to understand the magnitude of this assignment:

I joined the organization as a member while still a private pilot student back in 1996, and carried the AOPA wings window decal that came in my membership packet around with me in my flight bag for months until I earned my ticket. The very day I passed my check ride and was issued my license to fly, I went out into the flight school parking lot and ceremoniously affixed that decal to the back window of my truck...the same truck I drive today. Being an AOPA member means that much, and displaying those wings meant as much to me then as it does today. I did not feel like I could rightfully fly their wings without first demonstrating to myself, my father and my family that I could in fact earn the privilege to fly private airplanes.
So, when you see my articles for the next few weeks on aopa.org, the takeaway – besides a bunch of good, clean fun with airplanes – is that I might be one of the proudest members of this great organization right now. And if you fly, or want to fly, or own a business that sells stuff to people who fly, you are making a huge mistake for the future of GA if you are not an AOPA member. Go here right now and change that...for the good of everyone involved.

Because the next time some whacked out politician or the FAA wants to ram legislation down our throats that could damage GA, or the next time some telecom company wants to launch a network that will take down our GPS system, you will be damned glad you have suits from AOPA in Washington, D.C fighting for you, me and everyone else who calls themselves an aviator.

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