Even then, it wasn't an easy road. But the stars began to line up. On my second story assignment in my aviation writing career, I'd gone to interview Pat Halloran, the owner/pilot of a Loving's Love Goodyear racer at Flabob Airport in Southern California. As I asked him about his plane, I noticed some SR-71 photos in his hangar. Turns out he used to fly them. Cub reporter that I was, I assumed he must have been, well ... maybe not a lowly Air Force lieutenant, but perhaps a captain. He smiled. "Well, at ONE point in my career," he said graciously. I slowly and embarrassingly worked my way up the rank ladder, making a very serious note to self that I would never interview someone again without doing some homework on them, first.