Friday, January 04, 2008

Fly the friendly skies

Leg one of my Holiday trip started off with a trip to Chicago and a massive head cold. I am still wondering how I got sick since I NEVER GET SICK. I guess I will blame Marathon Man since he works around teenagers, and we all know what cesspools of germs they are. After a brief detour into work, met up with my Chicago friends. Someone had gotten the video game “Rock Band” recently, and being the lovable geeks that my guy friends are, they have obsessed over it since. Seriously, they debated for ten minutes on whose band they were going to use (some of them even protested that they had certain bands that the others could not taint, etc). I know how insanely hard Guitar Hero is, so I am awed at how good the boys are (or I wonder how much of their free time they actually devote to this game). After sparring for a few hours, they decided to go for the hall of fame which is an eight song set or something. They would all congratulate each other after finishing a difficult song, and then groan when they saw the next selection. It was hilarious….wait for it….awwwww shit not that one. Ah ha ha ha.

Later we all headed over to a hip bar/lounge called Plan B. I sadly had to leave early because my flight was at 7am the next morning, which meant I had to wake no later than 4:30am (or in about 3-1/2 hours).

Although I was cranky and not looking forward to the early morning flight, I changed my attitude once I witnessed the drama enfold in the boarding line. Obviously, the flight from Chicago to Omaha is not a high demand route. Therefore, we had a teeny tiny plane. This plane was so small that I was in row 8 and it was only two rows from the back. The seats were three across (total), so the plane roughly held just 30 people! I even had to duck when I walked down the aisle. Okay, you get the picture.

Anyway, for fear of being forced to use the tiny airplane lavatory (probably just a hole in the wall that you stick your butt in), I used the airport facility. When I returned, I was last in line to board (and therefore in perfect position to see the shit hit the fan). Our tiny plane had a weight limit, and with the holidays, everyone was checking multiple heavy bags. I lucked out and fit all my Christmas presents and clothes (for 10 days) into one carry-on and one 30 pound checked bag. Well they had to bump passengers because the flight was “overweight”. I originally thought it was a crap shoot if you got bumped until I noticed all the bumped passengers had no luggage with them (they must have checked more than one bag). The ticket scanner boarding line guy was all nonchalant about denying passengers the right to enter the flight. He was stone faced and like “[boop] go ahead, [boop] go ahead, [boop] stand aside, [boop]…”

Well one lady he bumped went ape shit. She was all yelling in his face “this is unacceptable! I have plans in Lincoln this afternoon! You can’t discriminate me! I paid for a seat on this plane and you can’t take it from me!” You get the idea. She demanded (screamed) to speak to his manager and the ‘they-don’t-pay-me-enough-to-give-a-fuck guy was like’ “[boop], sure, [boop], she is right over there, [boop], can you step aside”. She ran over there and started hassling the ticket agent who informed her the plane was overweight and they would happily give her a travel voucher and put her on the next flight that was leaving at….10:30am. Granted I would have been pissed if I had the day scheduled out and the 3-1/2 hour delay would fuck up my plans, but this lady was acting like Nebraska would disappear off the map like a mythical magical world full of corn and pick-up trucks, if she had to wait.

While the ticket manager person was dealing with the 8 or so other bumped passengers, the crazy lady stormed up to the boarding line scanner guy and spit out “I’m getting on this plane, and you can’t stop me!” Again, was like “[boop], go ahead…whatever”. I’m thinking “hey that was easy, so if I get bumped, I can just do that right”. Well I bided my time until I was finally with the scanner guy and sure enough “[boop] go ahead”. Relieved that karma was on my side, I walked down the gangway only to see the crazy lady being forcefully escorted out by two security guards while shouting “you can’t do this to me! I paid to be on this flight! This is unacceptable!” Ah ha ha ha. The funny thing is, because the flight was A) not fully booked and B) relieved of some passengers because of the weight restriction, there was practically no people on the flight! I had a whole row to myself. I decided to fill out the crossword and soduko in every in-flight magazine I could get my hands on (and boy were there many) just to piss off the next traveler. Ah ha ha ha.


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