I’m writing this blog post from 35,000 feet in the air. Actually, this will be the first time I’ve actually posted a blog while in flight. Now, before I begin a searing commentary on air travel which will force both Donald Trump and Bill Maher to block me on Twitter simultaneously, I have a confession to make.
I am terrified of takeoffs.
Yes folks, Mr Know-it-all Big Mouth Supreme is a sniveling wuss when the jet is going aloft. I think it has a lot to do with the fact that at my home airport, Tampa International, one of the primary takeoff corridors requires a right side bank over water which Snoopy himself dare not attempt. I mean you can see not just the water (beautiful, granted) or the fish in the water, you can see their fishy little butt cracks. That’s right, this takeoff path is akin to a roller coaster at Cedar Point.
But that’s not the only thing I dislike about flying. Forget the conventional traveler nightmares about security screening with cavity searches so invasive the Secret Service would be offended. I’m talking about the absolute hell-on-wheels of travel: caffeine depletion-induced pre-flight migraines. Yes, that crushing thumping sensation within one’s cranium which lends one to think a gremlin (not the stupid blow-em-up-in-the-microwave sort, but a hardcore german World War II gremlin) is banging drums and one’s cerebral cortex is that which is being pounded into cherry syrup. Thankfully, airport planners had the good sense to install coffee bars in airports which – gasp – serve up quality coffee and not the sort of dark fluid found in a vending machine which tastes like a cross between diesel fuel and Mr. Clean.
I would like to point out that I have nothing against either diesel fuel or Mr Clean. Both are wonderful products and I’m glad they are part of our world. Lawsuits can be cancelled now, thank you.
Now I could go into a massive diatribe about leg room, but instead how about I speak to nose room. Specifically, the fact that most airliner cabin atmosphere is recycled, which means that any number of airborne pathogens, as well as offensive odors, can permeate the cabin. Of course, body odor is a given and the occasional smokers stink will come in, as well as the evil peanut and cheap perfume smell, but the insidious odor of whiskey breath is, by far, the foulest of the foul. Seriously, when I’m smelling a cross of Jameson, Wild Turkey and Jim Beam when I go to sip my surprisingly average coffee, that’s a problem. Flying economy class offers few perks, but the ability to blog and enjoy a cup of joe, no matter how ghastly, is a ritual which should not be trifled with.
One of the more enjoyable parts of flying which offsets all this are the bizarre choices of inflight entertainment. Everything from television series starring Ted Danson, to unusual choices in pop music, are fair game on flights. On my last journey, I was able to indulge Disneys charming Ratatouille, which held the unintended consequence of making me want to eat actual airport food, but my intestinal tract was spared that torture by my flight from Minneapolis to Atlanta being delayed due to some unknown reason – likely a moose attempting to hitch a ride in the cargo hold. Either way, the resulting delay prevented me from being able to shove a Varsity hamburger down my gullet in Atlanta because doing so would have prevented me from hopping my last bird home to Tampa or, at the very least, resulted in the dreaded airborne chemical toilet stoppage.
Note to Varsity ownership. Keep your Hartsfield Jackson Airport location open past 10PM, okay? Thanks.
Well, I’m going to bid you all adieu for now. Next stop, Dallas-Fort Worth-Plano-Arlington-Neptune-Kuiper Belt Intergalactic Airport & Traveler Sanitarium. Time to take a nice relaxing….. seriously, who the f— just farted?? For shits sake I can taste it!