Monday, September 13, 2004


I just found this amazing book, Chickenhawk, by Robert Mason, in a used book store around the corner from the office. The book is about the helicopter war in Vietnam.

I've always been interested in flying but never had the chance. The closest I get is playing Combat Flight Simulator 3, a WWII flight sim, on my PC.

He takes you through flight training on various helicopters until they get to use the then state of the art Hueys.I always knew that flying a helicopter was difficult, more so than a plane, but I still had the idea that it was flown with a single joy stick.

Boy was I wrong. You have to use TWO joysticks, one for the left hand and one for the right, and they both are very complicated and sensetive so it takes an ambidextrous person to be able to pull off the complex procedures to manouver a fully loaded Huey in a battle situation.

I'm just at the part of the story where his 1st Air Cavalry Division has landed in Viet Nam. I don't think the rest of the story is going to be very pretty, but it will be intense. Here's his website:

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