Flying: Awesome and Annoying
July 19, 2008
As a normal traveler to ski races on the weekends during the winter, I am a regular to LAX airport as well as many other ones. I have flown all of the major airlines available from Los Angeles to places as close as Salt Lake City to East Coast cities like Boston and D.C. I’ve even gotten my taste of European airlines, some which are better than a stay at the Four Seasons and some which are what a plane actually is… a cramped metal tube.
The worst part about travel is probably security, as many would agree. It is annoying, enraging, and if your not careful, could result in your arrest. Being an avid movie-maker, I took my video camera through security to shoot the first part of our family ski movie and almost got tackled by the security people who then got really mad and requested (more like demanded) we delete the footage. I agree why they would do that, but their anger towards an innocent kid still gives me a grudge against security people. But recently, a life saving new program came out for common travelers that could give me some more sanity during my travels. Its called a clear card, where you submit an application to your airport, they do an extensive background test on you to see if your a terrorist, then – if you pass – you get to cut all the lines and have your bags hand inspected. I have one for San Francisco airport, but I don’t know how much it costs, and I’m not about to ask. Sadly, the clear card is still trying to earn its reputation, but in a few years, it will be available for a lot more airports.
The actual plane ride is very important to your satisfaction while in the skies. Depending on how long your flight is, the service given to you may vary. One exception to this is a cramped chinese or cheap Asian airline that flies for 10 hours with hundreds of other people, so stay away from those, if you can. For my flying, I only have to sit through a 1 hour 45 minute (tops) flight, so I don’t need much other than a Sprite and some chips, but even if I need something else, the flight attendants are usually happy to help. If you aren’t a big reader or don’t want to write your next blog entry on the plane, try to get a plane with a TV set on the back of your seat. These include Delta and American Airlines among others. And be careful to who you sit next to. If you see a famous person, don’t try to sit with them. The seat next to them that is not occupied may belong to a burly bodyguard that is using the bathroom. I learned this the hard way… But most of the time, there won’t be a famous person on your plane, so sit next to a person that it won’t be awkward to talk to. It is always good not to have an argument with the person next to you, for you can’t go anywhere. That’s my plane advice.