Travel Sucks Already
The Lifeguard went to Florida to do a little business in his former hometown, Tampa. This involved air travel, and a visit to the friendly TSA agents manning airport security. Truthfully, if things keep up this way, air travel will become only marginally better than prison rape. (Actually, the only difference between air travel and prison rape is that you choose air travel.)
So, after getting to the airport and checking in, The Lifeguard emptied his pockets, removed his belt and shoes, pulled out his laptop (from the buttery leather attache) and placed it in the Rubbermaid tray, fished out his driving licence, secured his boarding pass, checked his pockets for any pieces of paper that might remain (seriously, the millimetre wave scanners require everything--including a dollar bill--be removed from your pockets), and approached the scanner.
At this point, The Lifeguard noted that all women were being diverted from the Whole Body Scanner to a conventional metal detector. All women.
Why would the TSA do this? Are they treating women differently? Are there radiation fears? Does the TSA think that women don't blow up shit? (Or, have there been so many complaints about the images finding their way onto the internet that the TSA decided to send women through a different screening process?)
The Lifeguard asked for the same courtesy, but was told that the selection process was random. (So random that every woman was selected for one type of scanner and every man was selected for the other?)
Finally, through security, The Lifeguard reached the gate--and his ride--and settled in for the flight south. (The Lifeguard had a row all to himself.) Of course, all of the room in the world does not make up for the fact that the flight attendant's ass was wider than the beverage cart (and almost as long). Every time--every time--the flight attendant went down the aisle, her ass smacked The Lifeguard's arm. (The upside, however, was that The Lifeguard had a place to put his coffee.)
Seriously, the flight attendant's ass was so big that when she sat down, she was three feet taller.
She was so fat, the other flight attendants were orbiting her.
She was so fat that when we were number one for take-off, she was number two.
The Lifeguard wonders why a woman--who most certainly couldn't fit through a wing exit--can have a job as a flight attendant. One would think that the safety of those on an airplane outweighs (heh heh, "outweighs") the feelings of one overweight woman. It sort of made The Lifeguard long for the days when flight attendants had to make weight to fly.
The Lifeguard had a few other observations about his travel experience. (You can't wait to read them, can you?)
- In Atlanta, the airplane had a flat tire. (The pilot called AAA.) We could feel the plane being jacked up to permit the pit crew to change the tire. It was actually kind of cool.
- The ATL-TPA segment was uneventful and pleasant, save for the father who left his son to yammer away while he played video games on his phone (sans headphones). Seriously, if you don't have the sense to keep your child quiet (or try), don't fly. (Certainly not when The Lifeguard is on the plane.) The Lifeguard does not understand why the flight attendants don't address this nonsense.
- The Lifeguard is convinced that for every fit and attractive female flight attendant, there are at least five that might be a threat to the safety of the passengers.
- When The Lifeguard sits in an exit row, the other passengers have nothing to fear in the event of an emergency. Not only will The Lifeguard open the emergency exit, he'll help everyone out of the plane (from outside of the plane).
- The $25.00 per bag charge may be revenue gold for the airlines; but, a complete pain in the ass for anyone who travels by air. There is no need for you to bring 100 pounds of shit on the plane, then try to lift it into the overhead bin. In fact, a good rule of thumb is that if you can't lift it, don't bring it. (This would save millions in workers' compensation claims and medical bills.)
- The Lifeguard has never seen such a small bag of pretzels in his life. With peanut-sized pretzels, no less.
- $6.00 for a beer? Maybe in a club, in Boston; but, not in an aluminum tube. Service is shitty enough, so throw us a bone. In fact, free beer might just change the mood of the traveling public. (And, most certainly of The Lifeguard.)
- There is no better airport than Tampa's. And, it's been that way for 25 years.
- The JetBlue flight back to Boston was great. The aircrew was great, too. (In case they are reading this, thanks K, J, and C.)
- A woman on the TPA-BOS flight started talking to The Lifeguard. The Lifeguard said, "Did you have a good time in Tampa?" She said, "How did you know I was in Tampa?" The Lifeguard replied, "I'm psychic."
It's good to be home, y'all.
Keep the faith!