Click on a label to read posts from that part of the world.
Oct 15th 2011 4:09AM I'm usually the guy hitting people upside the head with my backpack, unfortunately. I generally fly with my mother, so I often end up dealing with one of her carry-ons as well as both of my own. And, unfortunately, that means I have to keep my backpack on my back instead of taking it off and holding it behind me as I push my rolling bag in front of me (that's just easier for me than pulling it down the aisle, for some reason).
Fortunately, I tend to try for a window seat, so I don't often have elbow wars - I read or snooze most of the trip, and NEVER get on a laptop, so even though I"m not a small guy, I can mostly keep myself off the armrest and save it for the poor guy in the middle, and when I DO get stuck in the middle it's usually with my mother on the window, and she lets me have the armrest... so I let the poor guy on the aisle have it, 'cause he can't really use the other one without getting his elbow smashed by the drink cart.
But I always feel bad when I think about the trail of smashed faces in my wake as I walk up the aisle...
Mar 22nd 2010 6:44PM My family was doing a trip from NH to Sandusky Park around my birthday one year, and we hit Niagara Falls the actual day of my birthday. On the shuttle bus early in the day, Mom led the *entire* bus in a rousing rendition of "Happy Birthday," which absolutely mortified me, eliciting a "Don't worry, you'll never see these people again!" And of course, we kept running into them all day, and they all yelled out "HAPPY BIRTHDAY, KEVIN!" with one family taking exceptional glee in their attempts to get me to jump into the falls. Then my cousin went up to somebody in a giant bear costume (Why a giant bear costume? I've no idea...) and told him it was my birthday, whereupon he proceeded to come give me a giant bear hug... from which I fled as if my very life depended upon it ("What'd you do for your birthday?" "I got chased by a bear..." "What?!").
So, that night we went to the Skylon Tower revolving restaurant, which had extremely slow service... because every few minutes, all the servers would come out singing. Which made me twitch every single time because I was pure *positive* that they were headed to our table. It was a Saturday night, and the place was jam-packed... and it seemed like every other family had a birthday boy or girl in the party.
It took us well over an hour after ordering to get our food, and close to half an hour to get our check after we asked for it, and I'm absolutely convinced if it wasn't for all the singing, we would've been in and out in under an hour. So, definitely in the "NO SONGS, PLEASE!" camp.
Jul 14th 2009 1:14AM I think I've hit the call button twice, mebbe thrice. Once (or twice), it was confused with the light button. The other time I managed to hit it with my head while standing up...
Nov 25th 2008 2:00AM When airlines start GUARANTEEING that both I and my luggage will arrive at my destination, rather than me getting stuck in Chicago or DC, or my luggage going to LA instead of Florida, THEN I'll start carrying less on. But until then, going out I'll have a bag with at least one, preferably two, changes of clothes; swimsuit if the hotel has a pool; anything I'll need that first day, including but not limited to ski boots and clothing (skis and poles can be rented. Boots, not so much, at least comfortably) if I'm going out west; Red Sox gear if I'm going to Florida for a Spring Training game; whatever else I feel will be needed before my luggage catches up to me at the hotel. Ditto flying home, though I'm more likely to pack the boots and ski gear! This is in addition to my small travel bag, with a book, MP3 player, travel pillow, water, and maybe a snack.... which obviously goes under my feat so that I can actually have access to it.
Do I "stop people from getting off the plane in a timely manner"? No. And I'm not even sure why you're pointing out the "ones that jump up right away and stand in the aisle and then get the bags from overhead" as the main culprits, sounds to me like they're the ones who DO deplane "in a timely manner."
The main culprits are the ones who, as others have pointed out, put their carry-on in the first available bin and then head to their seat in the back of the plane... which I agree, some (not all) flight attendants need to watch over more. Passengers are like children, in a lot of ways lol
Nov 25th 2008 1:11AM I actually saw a woman using one of the moving sidewalks to tire out her kid before the flight... had her running in place while she stood just behind, on the metal bit and holding her up, and pulled her off when somebody started coming down it.
I've also gone up the down escalator myself...
Nov 24th 2008 7:40PM What is right with the airlines? Many things.
1) The price. As others have pointed out, it's often cheaper than several years ago. Certainly hasn't risen commensurate with fuel prices... even if you include all the additional fees (though honestly, I'd rather just have the prices raised outright than pay this fee and that fee and the other fee...)
2) The view out the window. OK, so the airlines don't actually have much to do with this one, other than providing windows to look out of, but still. Without them, the only time I'd get to look down on the clouds would be in my dreams... which I rarely remember after I wake up.
3) The sense of adventure. The first time I flew, I was 10, with my mother. The second time I flew, I was less than a week older and alone. I've never quite lost that feeling of excitement... maybe because I only fly 2-3 times a year, max.
4) Take-offs and landings. Except for one time, when I fell asleep at one jetway and woke up at the other, I never fail to put my book away and watch the land recede or grow closer. That first flight, I said "Wow, those cars down there are so TINY!" My mother replied: "Those are houses." Again, never quite managed to lose that feeling. If I'm in the window seat, my eyes are basically glued to the window. If I'm in the middle, I'm constantly leaning forward or back depending on how the person in the middle moves. If I'm in the aisle, I feel like I have whiplash afterward from trying to look out BOTH sides of the plane... especially as we bank.
5) The FAs. Most of them are friendly, or at least that's my experience considering I rarely bother them beyond maybe an extra glass of ice to put in the bottle of water I brought with me. Yes, there are the occasional glares when I'm lugging my mother's second carry-on so it looks like I've got three, and I've had some outright rudeness at other times, but mostly they've at least PRETENDED not to want to throw any given passenger through the emergency exit at 40,000 feet... which is probably as much as you can ask of pretty much anybody on a long, crowded flight!
I do miss sitting on the aisle and leaning to the side and being able to see into the cockpit and even the little patch of blue through the front windows, but I'm hardly going to blame the airlines for taking THAT away. (I also miss being young enough that an FA would sometimes ask if I'd like to actually VISIT the cockpit and be given little plastic wings by the pilot, but I suppose they couldn't do that anymore regardless...)
Is flying my favorite way to travel? No (I have a certain fondness for trains), but it's right up there, even WITH the short connections and the delays and the sprinting across O'Hare (Out of curiosity, how come whenever I have a layover of 3 hours or more, I'm either at the same gate or the one next to it, but anything under 20 minutes is in another terminal?) and the getting wanded at Security (stupid belt buckle...) when I was running late already... Honestly, I'll take a few hours' flight to visit my family with a few annoyances over a few DAYS in the car with *several* annoyances pretty much any day of the week. At least until Security decides I need to be probed... *g*
Nov 24th 2008 5:50AM First, I gotta say, all these people saying "if you don't like your job, find another one" amuse the heck out of me. It's clear that Heather DOES love her job... just not every single aspect of it. Who does? As for the ones complaining about people in the service industry not wanting to do any service... *I* say, if you don't like her complaining about the parts she doesn't like... don't read the posts titled "Pet Peeves," which are clearly going to be, y'know, things she doesn't like about the job. Or just don't read any of them... Flight attendants aren't "waitresses of the skies," and they're not certainly not nannies or baggage handlers. Watching babies and schlepping luggage isn't in their job descriptions; honestly, we should be grateful that passing out drinks and (occasionally) food still is.
They're there for one reason: Passenger safety. That's how the job started, that's why it's still a job, and anything beyond that is just a bonus. You start choking on a peanut, I bet you're gonna be glad that there's somebody around who's almost guaranteed to know the Heimlich maneuver. As for the rest of it? Just be glad they're there so you don't have to sit down in a pile of somebody else's garbage from the last flight, at least there's a chance it got thrown away while the FA was walking down the aisle with a garbage bag.
I'm not a regular flier, but I do fly 2-3 times a years, and when I was younger I regularly accompanied my mother on business trips (luckily for the people around me, I was the kid with his nose buried in a book the whole flight). I've seen FAs that run the gauntlet from totally pleasant to totally bitchy... and I've seen them go from one end to the other, and ALWAYS because of passengers.
Reading these blogs, Heather has struck me as an FA who usually has a smile on her face... even if it's forced, which is still better than glares I've gotten from other FAs as I'm boarding... at times, admittedly, possibly due to the two roll-ons AND the backpack I've got, but at least one of those belongs to my mother with walking and balance issues. Anyway, I'd rather have Heather vent here than on a plane... and about types of people rather than TO a person who just happened to be the camel-breaking straw. As I said, who can say they love every single thing about their job? The only difference is, Heather has a place to write about it, and I say kudos to her for doing so.
And until a baggage handler gets a blog here, I'll continue overstuffing my suitcase and carrying on small bags that clearly fit... even if I do occasionally have to carry three of them on! *g*
Sep 28th 2007 8:58PM "Did you watch the video? It clearly shows a man walking up, lifting the seat, standing there for a second or two, putting the seat back down, and walking away. There is the answer to your example question."
Ah, but that begs the question... does it work because of the guy walking up and leaving, or because of the seat going up and then back down? 'Cause if it's the latter, well, how useful would it really be to the average, stereotypical, male? *g*
But still... Dude, I gotta build me one of THESE!