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Random observations on flying…

Random observations on flying…

I love going to the airport. I love flying on a plane. I’m not sure why – but it’s a great way to observe how some people live, and the weird stuff that goes down. Especially on American air carriers. To whit, on my recent transAtlantic flight:

– the foolish foolish couple, who proposed to each other halfway through an eight-hour flight. Thankfully, she said Yes – but can you imagine if she’d declined? Stuck sitting next to someone who’d rejected your overtures of love for the next four hours, inside a hollow tube and unable to get out. Very French.

It’s not even particularly romantic. In the first-class cabin of a Concorde jet, that’s one thing. But in cattle class amongst the hoi polloi and a family of seven chavtastic Brits going to Florida?

Having said that, you do get free champagne out of it. I need to find a female partner in crime, get a diamond ring, and swindle restaurants across the world out of free champagne. It worked once.

– The SkyMall catalogue which seems to be endemic to all American aeroplanes is a hilarious hoot. All these utterly useless frivolous items on sale – like stairs for your pet so your obnoxious little cat/dog can climb up onto the sofa. Ion purifiers. Tranquil sound machines. No wonder the end of Western civilisation is nigh. Mind you, I imagine half the reason I want to live in the United States is so that I can purchase and use these projects, and live the quasi-Ikea lifestyle.

– the warning from the cabin crew not to congregate near toilets, as per anti-terrorist regulations. I couldn’t believe it when this policy was announced a year or so ago, so to see them doing it was just insane. Fortunately, it was never actually policed as far as I could tell.

– I got finger-printed and photo-ID’d when I arrived at US immigration. To be fair, the process was painless, quick and easy (hurrah for digital technology) but it still felt a little degrading. Plus, of course, the computer told the immigration agent exactly how long I’d spent in the US the last time.

– There was one elderly woman who’d booked two seats so she could have a seat all to herself. This strikes me as a tad expensive – wouldn’t it be cheaper to book a first-class seat?


  • Skymall! I heart the Skymall catalog. Thing of all the ridiculous things you could buy WHILE IN THE AIR. Capitalism at its FINEST.

  • Hrm. Was she a large lady…? 'Cuz I could almost understand that, not personally wanting my own hamhocks rubbing up against the next person's tush.

    I love your ring idea. Evil genius. Plus a really good way to stick it to all the other peoples' proposals we've had to endure.

    Actually, I *have* been told not to stand and wait for the flying sh*tcan, on Southwest flights. The thing I wonder is HOW, then, are you supposed to ever get in there? Because half the time I tried to stand up, someone closer beat me to it. The flying floozies…erm, stewardess, did tell me that I could sit in a closer seat while I waited, but that's only IF there are any empty seats…isn't there a better way to do this? Take a number?

  • The best 'public' proposal I've seen to date was on 'Questiontime'. Now that is class.

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