One of my darling’s many talents, apparently, is comedic writing. So, here’s a little guest blog no doubt spawned by a recent flight. Enjoy!
(1) Please have your luggage tags prepared ahead of time. The light bulb should not suddenly appear when you get the kiosk and when thousands of people are standing behind you waiting for you to check-in. You knew who you were before you left home and you know your address. You may have four hours to kill at the airport, but some people have a life and a job that doesn’t allow them to be at the airport four hours before the flight leaves.
(2) The priority check-in and boarding line is for passengers who choose to pay a little extra and avoid lines and inexperienced travelers. If you see the sign that says Priority on it and you squish up your face in a confused look wondering if you are a priority passenger, you probably aren’t. If you were, you’d know it because you would have paid for it or earned enough miles to be on the list.
Getting to your Flight
(3) Please be aware of your surroundings. Some people have tight connections to make and don’t have all day to dawdle around the airport killing time or walking at leisurely pace. If you are unsure where to go, don’t stop in the middle of the terminal gazed and confused. This often causes pile-ups of people falling over you. Move your confused self to one side of the terminal where you can spend as much time as you like trying to find yourself.
(4) The moving escalators are meant to save time for travelers in a hurry to catch a connection. One side is marked stand and the other side is marked walk. The standing side is for you to stand on, the walking side is for you to walk/run on while you dash from one side of the airport to the other in an attempt to make your connection in ten minutes. Under no circumstance should you stand next to your travel companion chatting about the weather and blocking both sides. If you are knocked over the side of the escalator by a passenger in a hurry to catch a flight, this is your fault.
(5) When the LOUD beeping car behind you BEEPS, it means move out of the way. It does not mean for you to continue walking in the same leisurely path. The cart is trying to get people to their gate on time. I’m starting a movement to put cow catchers on the front of the cars like the ones they have on trains to bump cattle out of the way on train tracks. When you find yourself on your ass at the side of the terminal with your luggage scattered all around you, perhaps you will remember the beeping sound next time.
(6) Flying is a hazard. If you fly a lot or a little, you will probably miss a flight because of a late plane. Remember that the person working the counter of the flight you just missed did not fly your previous plane. No, they can’t call the plane back for you—you’re simply not that important. It will do you no good to yell at the worker. This only results in making you look foolish and it will end in the same result—you aren’t getting on that plane. Even though you think where you are going is more important than everyone else, everyone else disagrees. Work it out.
(7) While you were standing in line at the security checkpoint, you may have noticed the signs that tell you what you can and cannot take in your carryon luggage. These are not suggestions. It will do you know good to argue with the security people thus resulting in holding everyone else up. This makes people angry and makes them want to kill you. There is also a list of things posted you need to remove from your bag to send through the security machine. While you are standing in line looking around casually at all the happenings at the airport, read a sign. You can save the people behind you a lot of murderous thoughts if you will be prepared when you hit the security checkpoint. You also should not become upset when we are laughing at you because your luggage is falling out all over the place because of your failure to plan for security.
(8) You stood in the security line for what, fifteen or twenty minutes watching every passenger in front of you show their ID and boarding pass to the officer checking those items. Suddenly, as you get to the front, they ask to see YOUR ID and boarding pass. You’re dazed and confused as to why in the world they would ask this. Yes, the hundreds of people behind you are rolling their eyes at you as you fumble around for your driver’s license and boarding pass. All this could have been avoided had you used your powers of observation and processed those observations. The fact that they were asking EVERYONE for their ID and boarding pass should have been a clue that it wasn’t a random sampling. Also, there is a sign at the front of the line that says “have your ID and Boarding Pass ready.” This means…well you get it.
(9) The security requirements have not changed in the last few years. Because some dumb ass tried to light his shoe on fire, the rest of us now have to take our shoes off too. You are no exception. It would be highly suggested that you wear something easy to slip off (NOT CROCS) so that you don’t have to hop around on one foot bumping into everyone while you try to take your shoes off. No one cares if you think it’s stupid…it’s better than being blown up. Just be thankful you don’t have to remove all of your clothes for analysis because of the moron who tried to set his underwear on fire. Always remember, things could be worse.
(10) While you were standing in security, there was a little diagram telling you how big your carryon can be and how many you can have. No, the airline will not allow you to take three bags on even if one is a Wal-Mart bag. The limit is one carry on and one personal belonging, period. The size of your carryon is important. No matter how much you shove, push, squeeze, slam, or punch with your fist, you carryon will not fit in the overhead compartment if it is bigger than the size required by the airlines. Although it is quite amusing to passengers like me who have a twisted sense of humor, it’s holding up the plane. Remember, one of the other points where you missed your connection because your plane was late….now you know why the plane was probably late.
(11) The security people are doing their jobs when they have to take you aside and search you or search your luggage. Getting upset and yelling at them does not help your cause. In my humble opinion, anyone causing a scene about being searched at security should be stripped searched. If you packed something you didn’t want the airport to see, then you shouldn’t have packed it to begin with. Leave your kinky lifestyle at home and you don’t have to worry about trying to explain to the security people why you packed hand cuffs (Yes, I do know this from personal experience, but it was not me who was being searched nor anyone I was with—dammit).
BOARDING YOUR PLANE
(12) Please do not give the flight attendant grief if they ask you to move out of the exit row. Yes, it has more room, but the point of sitting in the exit row is to assist others in the event of an emergency. If you have to be helped getting out of your seat, you shouldn’t be in the exit row. We don’t need to be stumbling over you in the event of an emergency.
(13) Before the plane can take off, all cell phones must be turned off. This means that you cannot be talking on your cell phone when the flight attendant says “all cell phones must now be turned off.” You’ve been waiting an hour or more for your flight to board and could have made all the calls you desired. Holding up your finger for the flight attendant to “hang on a sec” when she asks you to turn it off is not acceptable. The proper reaction from the flight attendant should be to snatch up your cell phone, snap it in half and return it to you in an unconventional way that involves some shoving. I realize you think your call is important, but it is important to me to get to where I am going on time. Your spouse can wait an hour until you land to hear whatever important news you have to tell him/her.
(14) All of us who travel and have no kids really appreciate the screaming child you bring on the plane with you. Now, less I be considered insensitive (which I am), I fully support other people having children and populating the earth—as long as it does not interfere with my life in any way. The support goes down a bit when your child is screaming in my ear. On the positive side, it immediately squashes any microscopic spark of wanting a child of my own. Don’t give me a dirty look when I order a lot of alcohol…it’s how I cope with screaming children. I don’t judge you because of your screaming child (well not verbally at least) so don’t judge me because of my coping mechanisms. (Please don’t bombard me with emails and comments about how insensitive I am to those with children—I like children….when they aren’t screaming or annoying).
(15) As you are walking down the aisle, please be mindful of the passengers already in their seats and waiting for take-off. I realize that you are multi-tasking by talking on the phone, dragging an over-sized carry-on behind you and shouldering a purse/laptop bag, but you should be mindful and realize that your purse/laptop bag is slapping every person in the face as you move up the aisle. Since women tend to carry everything but the kitchen sink in their purses, one knows that being hit upside the head with a big purse or a laptop can cause a concussion.
(16) When a person next to you is reading (book, magazine) or listening to their ipod, it generally means they aren’t open to conversation. Non-verbal clues should be going off in your head that perhaps this person doesn’t want to be disturbed. I like conversation as much as the next person, but having just got off the connecting flight with the screaming child, I probably have a headache, and I may be a little drunk. Asking me questions while I’m trying to read my book is annoying. Please talk to the person on the other side of you or not at all. Maybe read a book, or the in-flight magazine. Remember, reading is important as already mentioned in several points above. Practice that.
(17) Once the plane has landed, everyone on the plane is in a hurry. You are not the only that needs to catch another flight. Pushing, sighing, stamping your foot, and cursing is not going to get you off the plane any faster. There is a possibility that you will miss your connecting flight. Refer back to number if you miss your connecting flight.