Tuesday, November 28, 2006

An airline gripe

I have a proposal that might revolutionize airline travel, making it a much more comfortable experience for the vast majority of passengers.

Let's eliminate reclining seats. From now on, all seats stay in their upright positions not only for takeoff and landing, but for the duration of flight. End of story.

Listen, I understand the seats possess the reclining function. In an ideal world, we'd all kick back and put our feet up on an ottoman while we gallavant across the country at 35,000 feet eating truffles and filet mignon.

But the financial reality of the situation is the airlines now treat us like cattle, allotting us no more space than sheep get in the trucks on the way to the slaughterhouse and feeding us peanuts, if we are lucky.

You would think passengers would treat each other with just an ounce of respect and/or dignity. We're all in this together.

Unfortunately, there are too many people out there flying coach who deign themselves more important than the rest of us. They refuse to adapt to the era of reduced leg room and are adamant about claiming more room for themselves, even at the expense of fellow travelers.

These are the same people who logjam the boarding with their futile attempts to cram overstuffed suitcases into the overhead bins. They couldn't fit them using hydraulic jacks, but they just don't get it. They sit their pushing and pushing with dumbfounded looks on their faces.

So they get into their oversized arses into their undersized seats and immediately thrust themselves into my lap.

It should be noted: I am an average-shaped fellow. At 6-foot-1, 180 pounds, I probably represent the average male traveler. And when that seat swings back, you might as well opt to crush my kneecaps with a vise.

Seats can land crippling blows.

I love when their seat actually balances on my knees. The unruly passenger often becomes agitated that their seat cannot reach the fully reclined position, and they push back with all their might, as if they are rodeo performers trying to stay on the bull.

There's no hope of unfolding my tray table with the yahoo in front of me riding in the lap of coach-class luxury, no shot at reading a newspaper or magazine. On United, the quarters are so cramped, it is difficult to read even a book in such conditions.

My only recourse is to repeatedly kick the offending seat and make the flight as miserable for the Pig Vomit in 4A as he/she has made it for me.

I think I could be elected to public office by a wide margin if I ran on a platform of this lone issue.


At 5:33 PM, Blogger Todd Cohen said...

I agree with the seat difficulty.

I almost saw my laptop break into two places when Fatty McFatterson decided to quickly lean back on a recent flight.

As for the airlines listening to you commentary...they've moved on to other things...


At 5:34 PM, Blogger Todd Cohen said...

I broke up the link for you


At 9:31 AM, Blogger Pete said...


One of my old fellow beat writers had two laptops in one season crushed in overhead bins by morons smushing their baggage into a finite amount of space.

Last summer, our baseball writer had his laptop smashed by a foul ball at the local professional ball park.

The kicker: Our company refused to buy him a new one because they said he shouldn't have been using his own personal laptop for on-the-job work.

(Note: There were about four company-owned ones for the entire newsroom, and they expected him to drive 30 miles to and from every day to obtain one of those, the drop it off in the morning).

After much outcry, the company finally relented and paid for repairs. But we were all scolded to not use our own stuff because they wouldn't be paying again.

Classy operation.

At 9:11 PM, Blogger SJPSandman said...

As an oversized individual, I say amen!

Best part of this whole blog is you felt it necessary to actually link to a picture of Paul Giamatti when dubbing the dickhead in front of you "pig vomit." Well done.


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