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Artistamps Commemorate Aviation Fun

Aviate Inverted is the visual and textual messages on this commemorative artistamp by The Olathe Poste
Limited edition artistamp (above) was also created to commemorate The Olathe Poste joining the ranks of the Local Post Collector's Society. This stamp is the only one to date which 'flys' under The Olathe Poste banner to bear the word "Local" on the stamp.

The caption below the cachet on the First Day Cover reads:
"The Olathe Poste Commemorates Airplanes, Pilots, & Stamps that are Inverted, Perverted, or otherwise fondled lovingly..."

Aviate Inverted...

Much of my life during the 1980's was spent in the cockpits of airplanes. I lovingly refer to this period in my life as my "barnstorming days."

Besides aviation being a lifelong love of my life, the allure of being free as a bird, and all that, flying was a way for me to pre-pay favors to others. Favors I hoped I would never have to need in return. Specifically, I was a search and rescue pilot with the New Mexico Wing of the Civil Air Patrol, and Air Mission Coordinator for the New Mexico State Police. With enough certifications from the U.S. Coastgaurd, NMSP, and the CAP to choke a horse.

Click stamp to see the original self-portrait image. Photo 1983 by W. C. `Bill` PorterBut during my barnstorming days of the 1980s, I also owned a Smith Mini-plane DSA-1. It along with some old war birds owned by the Confederate Air Force, of which I was also a member of, saw the seat of my pants strapped down firmly on the seats of many fun aircraft. The FAA, I must admit, knew my telephone number by heart and called on a regular basis to chastise me for doing something too close to the ground, crowds of bystanders, or something, while being upside-down or in some other unusual attitude (pilot talk). The FAA considers anything beyond 60 degrees of a nose-up attitude, down, or in a steep bank aerobatic. Well, I owned an aerobatic airplane, flew aerobatics at airshows in the Southwest, obviously had to practice aerobatics to stay proficient at it, and, well...

So anyway, one day I decided that I needed to document this segment of my life. Using what every good pilot always keeps onboard for emergency repairs, I duct-taped a camera onto a wing strut of my Smith, ran a remote shutter release, and went up into the wild blue yonder to take a few self-portraits.

Although my "Aviate Inverted" artistamp was created and issued on the 13th of December, 2004, a close predecessor to it was issued in 2002 (Air Mail Art above), from one of the self-portraits that resulted from that photographic sortie in 1983.

Topical artistamp collectors will be happy to know that besides a few sheets of both stamps, approximately 20 Aviate Inverted FDC's are still available. A second cover envelope, using the inverted self-portrait image in B&W for the cachet is more prevalent - with or without an accompanying "Aviate Inverted" stamp. This second cover envelope, will normally bear the matching Air Mail Art artistamp, tinted overall in bright orange, to match the actual paint job on my old Smith, N8NE.

More photos of the Smith here

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