What we’re reading: Pilot secrets, greener air at Sea-Tac, Portland’s urban winery


13 secrets airline pilots won’t tell you

Before you fly on your next trip, you may want to pick up the current issue of Reader’s Digest. One of the articles will tell you 13 secrets airline pilots won’t tell you.

“I’m constantly under pressure to carry less fuel than I’m comfortable with. Airlines are always looking at the bottom line, and you burn fuel carrying fuel. Sometimes if you carry just enough fuel and you hit thunderstorms or delays, then suddenly you’re running out of gas and you have to go to an alternate airport.” — Captain at a major airline

“Sometimes the airline won’t give us lunch breaks or even time to eat. We have to delay flights just so we can get food.” — First officer on a regional carrier

Cool, greener air getting pumped into planes at Sea-Tac

Next time you board a plane at Seattle-Tacoma, you may notice a change in the air.

But last month, the airport launched a new “preconditioned air” network that cools (or heats) at a central plant, then pumps treated air through hoses directly into the plane.

Pick up a $20 ‘Passport’ for Portland’s new crop of urban wineries

If you enjoy wine and will be in Portland, Ore., why not pick up a $20 passport to enjoy the urban wineries.

So, what’s an urban winery? Think of it as winemaking on a smaller and more intimate level. You don’t need to have your own fields and live out in the country; instead, urban winemakers will simply buy grapes from vineyards and make their own blends, sometimes in extremely small batches.

(Photo: herzogbr/Flickr Creative Commons)