My Trip to DC & Top 5 Problems With Flying

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Tom, get your plane right on time.
I know your part'll go fine.
Fly down to Mexico.
Da-n-da-da-n-da-n-da-da and here I am,
The only living boy in New York.

I get the news I need on the weather report.
I can gather all the news I need on the weather report.
Hey, I've got nothing to do today but smile.
Da-n-da-da-n-da-da-n-da-da here I am
The only living boy in New York

Leaving Wednesday night for Washington DC. Back in October rumor had it that my brother was going to host Turkey Day in Bethesda. I checked Orbitz and got a plane ticket for $125 round trip. Had to weigh the options:

1. Normally it took 6 hours to drive to DC, with holiday traffic i'd hazard 8+ hours driving with holiday traffic.
2. Gas was $3.00 a gallon, round trip would cost about $60 alone. With tolls, maybe another $15. That's $75.
3. Driving to airport & checking in: 1 hour. Waiting at terminal: 1 hour. Flight: 1 hour and change (If no delays). Getting off plane, getting bag & getting to brother's place: 1 hour and change. Total time: About 5 hours.

To me, for $125, which would be $50 more it was worth it. When I originally made my flight I took into consideration a healthy Donovan McNabb and the Eagles game to be 1pm. I made my flight home for 7pm Sunday, arriving at 8:20pm. Thanks to the new flexibile schedule I get to miss the first half of the Eagles game. This might be a good thing, considering that Jeff Garcia is at QB.

There are 5 problems I have with flying:

1. I'm 6'3 and a HALF. Coach seats are designed for the most of the cast of The Wizard of OZ. I flew business class once and it was glorious...until....

2. I would hazard that 50% of my flights there is some kind of child problem. I get the "Crying baby" or the "Loud Toddler" or "I'm gonna fucking kick the front of my chair Rascal". Last time I flew business I got the Rascal. I turned around, asked his mother to control him (in a nice way). It lasted about 5 minutes. Tonight, with the holidays I fully expect to get on the plane and hear some kid wailing like it is the end of the world...which brings me to...

3. Every time I fly I get that feeling of dread that the plane is gonna crash. It probably started when I flew to London in 1988 and I saw smoke coming from the engine when I looked out the window. I calmly brought this to the attention of the stewardess. Her wide eyed stare and quick dash to the cockpit left its mark on me. Fortunately they turned around the plane and landed without a problem. 9/11 doesn't help, either. I don't need any meds or anything, but really never look forward to getting on a plane.

4. I have flown quite a few times in my life, but certainly not as much as your typical business traveller. On all of my trips, I never got to sit next to the hot/cute/walk upright & has opposable thumbs girl. 90% of the time get the fat guy or the foreign national who thinks bathing is optional. I swear to God. I did once site next to a MILF, with her two kids. She went to Villanova...graduated in 1986 and her husband worked for ESPN. Still, what kind of fun is that? She's cute, has kids and is married. It's like God hates me. Seriously though, don't you think airlines could make like a "singles seating" where the guys and girls who are single can sit together if they choose? But then that could get creepy, like the married guys who click that option much like those married guys who join MySpace to meet lonely women and ruin it for the rest of us.

5. Boarding/Exiting the plane. Easily the most frustrating experience of flying. Ever watch how fucking slow people get off a plane? Everytime I get on or off a plane, it takes me about 30 seconds to get on, find my seat, and sit down. Every other idiot of the planet takes their god-awful time like it is Sunday driving day and every asshole brings carry-on luggage that far exceeds the flight rules, takes up too much overhead compartment space and never fits. Then they sit down, and need a pillow. They get back up, block traffic, get a pillow. Now they need their glasses. Back up again, and get their glasses. Oh, where's that magazine? Up again and getting that. Or when they get off the plane, its like most adults have the arm strength of a 7 year old child. You see them struggling with their luggage in the overhead compartment, arms flailing around and making grunting noises while everyone is watching this display with barely masked rage. What the fuck is wrong with people when it comes to quickly getting off a plane?

Won't be back until Sunday. Looking forward to seeing my family members. Very much hoping there is no major drama. I love my family, but it always seems that every holiday someone will say something to piss me off. Like the time I brought my British roommate, John, to Thanksgiving dinner in 1999 since he didn't know anyone in America. My family knew I had two roommates. And my family also knows that i'm one of those perpetually single family members at every holiday. I never brought any girlfriends home for a holiday it is cool until you are over 30 and you start to get self conscious/sensitive about it. Everyone else is celebrating the holiday with their special other/fiance/wife/kids and i'm guy who is drunk, alone and watching TV by 10pm when everyone else goes to sleep. Anyhow, one of my brothers-in-law pulls me aside after dinner and with a dead serious look says, "Sean...I didn't know about you two. You're gay?" Yea, very funny motherfucker. I was told later he was kidding, and he did apologize for a joking around like that, but it basically ruined any Thanksgiving spirit I had. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

Also I have been to DC before, but also thinking it would be a good chance to play tourist for the weekend. I mean, I did work there an an intern for Senator Arlen Specter in 1992, but should take the chance to see some of the less-annoying sights (i.e. anything that doesn't have a major line). Also i'm bringing my new camera, and i'd like to get some cool shots.

Good luck everyone. Happy Thanksgiving. God bless our troops for protecting our country and sacrificing their holiday for America and democracy.


I remember seeing an add for a service that matched singles on flights though I can't seem to find it.

I was in DC 2 weeks ago and went to the new WWII memorial which is beautiful. A short walk away is the Korean War memorial which is AMAZING if you've never been. I hear its best viewed at night or in the rain.

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This page contains a single entry by Furey published on November 22, 2006 12:04 AM.

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