Ok with tongue firmly set in cheek, here are some not so set in stone rules to live by if you want to enjoy the hobby and make friends at the club flying field.
Step one is to keep everything in perspective. Hey man! This is a freakin’ hobby and is suppose to be fun! People don’t need pressure at the flying field, there’s plenty of that in the real world. If you always find yourself compelled to show everyone what you know and point out what they don’t—chances are you’re already one of the hated guys.
The next thing is don’t try to be Joe Cool at the field! Don’t fake it. Being yourself, no matter what pops up is a good plan. Even when you’re not on the flying field.
Remember, neatness counts! No! Your airplane doesn’t have to look like a WRAM show winner, but neither should it look like a leftover from the latest club auction. Try to improve your skills with every noew plane you build and try to make it look as nice as you can. And what your pit area? It shouldn’t be spread all over the place. If you last flew from station 2, why is your radio on the picnic table and your starter box at station 4? Nobody likes a slob!
Watch the clock. Nothing gets people’s dander up more than a sky hog. You know, the guy who just has to take every possible opportunity to be in the air flying his plane. Really unless you are always helping someone learn to fly, this is a sure sign of a lack of common courtesy and a lack of team spirit. Remember, less air time means more face time with other club members.
Reach out! Ok, so you’ve been a member of the club for more years than most other members have been alive. If you don’t want to be viewed as one of the less valuable dinosaurs in the club, try reaching out and help newer members learn the ropes! No, this doesn’t mean yelling at them every time they make a mistake. How about after they land and gather their thoughts, offer them a drink of water and chat a bit about what makes a good (and better,) RC pilot.
Rules for everyone? If you’re the kind of guy that thinks rules apply to everyone else but not to you, then there is a good chance, this whole story is about someone exactly like you. It’s that old “do as I say, not as I do” attitude that trips people up. It’s all about keeping every one safe and increasing that all important fun factor that got everyone into the hobby in the first place.
Try to be socially acceptable. Demonstrate common courtesy and some average social skills. You don’t have to be the life of the party, but when someone comes over and asks a question, don’t just stand there and give ‘em your ”old” one-word answer. You might be happy being the grumpy old guy but it’s not a good plan for helping the club and your hobby grow.
Finally, to really be the least hated guy at the flying field, try working with everyone and give something back to the club before you try to change things. Be a volunteer and help with events that bring some coin into the club. Don’t grumble at all the meetings about what you don’t like. Join in and help make it better by getting involved.
Note: The thoughts and comments voiced here are not necessarily those of this website, or of the person who posted it–and who shall remain Anonymous :^)