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RLM
post Feb 11 2008, 01:21 AM
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Recently, I was reading a RV magazine wherein they used the term ďco-pilotĒ for a female spouse. I have heard it used a dozen times before and I realize itís a standard term used for some time. However, I thing it is used more likely by the senior generation of RVers who have been indoctrinated and have accepted the term.

Albeit, I have a few of my own gendered prejudices, I never have liked what is perhaps a male chauvinist tag and my wife dislikes it even more since she is perfectly capable of driving and operating every aspect of the rig. On more than one occasion, she has reminded me that the bus gets much better fuel economy if I first raise the leveling jacks. Itís those types of co-operator functions that make us a team, not pilot and co-pilot.

Does being the pilot mean that the male driver is always in charge and gets to give the orders or does it mean that he gets all the blame for screwing up? In the aviation industry the two up front are the Captain and First Officer. Obviously, the Captain is first on the blame line, but his duty title is earned from many more years of experience than that of the FO. Since we typically purchase a RV as a family and start the learning curve at the same time, aviation hierarchy doesnít necessarily apply.

Now if the ladies who read my post prefer just to hold the map and tune the radios as a co-pilot, thatís ok. However, Iíd like to have another term for my partner and equal team member that reflects her skills and contributions in operating our rig. Anyone have a suggestion?
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Oakman
post Feb 11 2008, 06:56 AM
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You have taken it for granted that copilot is a term for the wife. Not so. It is the for other person riding up front with the operator of the rig. If the magazine used the term copilot and wife interchanagably then they are wrong.

If your wife is doing the driving then you are the copilot. It is not a male, female thing. You probably got the impression from the fact that many wives don't drive the rig. This is especially true of owners of fifth wheels.

By the way, refering to the other person in the rig as the copilot started with trucking industry.
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Joe-n-Doe
post Feb 11 2008, 07:04 AM
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RLM,

In the mid-80's I was driving a minimum of 200 miles a day at work and probably averaged closer to 350 per day. Much of it was surveillance driving on the greater LA area and a lot of it was done on weekends (what day off?!?) If any of you have ever witnessed a pack of cars that appear to be racing around, running lights, and driving like plain old AOs, it was very likely a moving surveillance team. All of it was done solo. I got so burned out that when I was home and we had to drive anywhere DW did it.

She still does 90% of the driving and with the RV (5er) almost all the backing. She is the pilot and I am the navigator (this is where I am really able to tell her where to go! laugh.gif Having used all kinds of maps and charts, I am well suited for this. When she gets tired or a backing job frustrates her, I'll take the wheel. It is a team approach that works well for us.
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DXSMac
post Feb 11 2008, 08:51 AM
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I agree with what Oakman said, and Joe-n-Doe's comments were on the mark. And RLM, may I say thank you for being conscientious of the "gender" thing?

JJ


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JJ from Pacific Northwest

Check out my blog on TOADLESS RVing!
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Cheryl
post Feb 11 2008, 09:10 AM
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On our vacation's DH does all of the driving, but I do all of the planning: routes, stops, where we are going, packing up the camper, etc. It works for us. I don't like driving and he does. I have more time to get on the computer at home. He wanted to get a stick shift truck (which I can drive - just not very good at it). Plus heavy traffic makes me very, very nervous. Also, he had been camping all his live, I started after we were married. We have never put labels on ourselves or each other. Just never occurred to us to do so I guess. I say do what works for your family and don't worry about society labeling it a his or her job.
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John Blue
post Feb 11 2008, 09:04 PM
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The pilot co-pilot thing may be from FMCA. To me person in the left front seat is the driver and rest of people on board are helpers. I do most of the driving due to wife is not happy with road work and very small lanes to drive in. You can mess up in a second. She will drive 25 to 30 miles at time. At that time she is the driver. Then I look at the nice towns and things to see. We also work together on all items that need them. No her job or my job here and no she will not dump the waste tanks. smile.gif


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Brandon, Fl.
FMCA F-248693
Foretravel MH
Honda CRV tow
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Cheryl
post Feb 11 2008, 10:28 PM
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QUOTE
no she will not dump the waste tanks.


Yeah, I don't do that either, but I wash all the dishes. biggrin.gif Works for us.
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DXSMac
post Feb 12 2008, 08:54 AM
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QUOTE(Cheryl @ Feb 11 2008, 08:28 PM) *

Yeah, I don't do that either, but I wash all the dishes. biggrin.gif Works for us.


What is so hard about dumping waste tanks? Is there something I don't know?

Wear Gloves
Pull Black Tank handle out
While draining, go in and flush toilet, just to make sure
Push handle back in when empty

Pull Grey Handle out

Ok, that part is easy. The really yucky part is if you are packing up and you have to handle those things. I have a special container I keep them in.

I'm a solo traveller, I have to do EVERYTHING.

JJ


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Butch
post Feb 12 2008, 09:33 AM
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Having been in the auto/truck/bus business as a mechanic and later as a parts dept. person, we always refered to the right side as the passenger side. The term "co-pilot" to us refers to the right side of the motor home, and not to the person in the seat. The wife has not objected when the term is used to refer to her. I'm very sure that if she objected, she would have voiced her opinion loud and clear. We have taken safe driving courses, and she has taken a driving class, and road test for the operation of motor homes. She has driven ours', with toad, and does a good job. Upon arrival at the Rv site, we both work together to off load the vehicle from the tow dolly, then normally she handles the interior, while I take care of the outside duties. We both can do all the duties, in and out if the need does arise.


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Butch & Kathy
and "Greta"
says, "me too !"
FMCA # F412606
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Cheryl
post Feb 12 2008, 01:36 PM
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QUOTE
What is so hard about dumping waste tanks? Is there something I don't know?


The smell!
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DXSMac
post Feb 12 2008, 09:23 PM
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QUOTE(Cheryl @ Feb 12 2008, 11:36 AM) *

The smell!



OK! I gotcha!

I usually wash my dishes in a Rubbermaid dishpan (that sits on one side of the sink), then I throw that water down the toilet. I rinse the dishes in the other side of the sink. Using the Rubbermaid basin to WASH the dishes serves two purposes for me:

1. Since I dump that down the toilet, and only use rinse water in the sink, this makes my black and grey fill up at about the same rate (so I'm not dumping grey three times before I dump black....)

2. Dilutes the black tank enough so there isn't much of a "smell." I very rarely use "chemical" in my toilet..... Usually only in very hot weather.

JJ (the only bad thing about solo travelling is that I have to do EVERYTHING!!!!!)


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http://rvingtoadless.blogspot.com/

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John Blue
post Feb 12 2008, 09:36 PM
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I need to add that wife has been to Lazy Days driving school here in Seffner, FL. Driving, parking, safety and other items were on the list and she did pass. Tank draining was also on the list but she did not like that part of RV life. As Cheryl said it can have some odor. This tell me tank needs more work to keep it down. Like Butch we both work together to off load the Honda from the tow bar and move MH on into site. We each can do all items if we have the need. We used time at home to hook and un-hook up everything before we started on the open roads. Now we need about ten mins to get Honda off and hook up power and water at site. MH takes care of the rest. We also dump water like DX items 1 and 2, to saves tank space.


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Brandon, Fl.
FMCA F-248693
Foretravel MH
Honda CRV tow
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FosterImposters
post Feb 12 2008, 11:34 PM
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RLM: like you guys, the pilot/copilot labels never really fit us. It is a generational thing.

Both enjoy driving. (Ladies...if you haven't tried it, believe me, it's a total kick to drive these rigs). However: he likes the driving better than the computer stuff. So I get to play with weather, road conditions...even latest primary results, while rumbling down the road.

Road Warrior and Computer Jockey... rolleyes.gif




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Cheryl
post Feb 13 2008, 08:42 AM
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It's not just the holding tank smell, the whole area of where you have to dump is bad. Maybe I just have a highly sensitive nose, but it makes me feel sick.
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Butch
post Feb 13 2008, 09:26 AM
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Must agree that there are times when the dump station leaves a lot to be desired as to the cleanliness of the area, which contributes to the offensive odor. We all have observed individual(s) who fail to protect not only their own, and or their families' health, but put yours' and ours' at risk when dumping their tanks. We are most observant as to conditions that exist at or about the dump station, and or at the sewer drop.


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and "Greta"
says, "me too !"
FMCA # F412606
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