Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Airport Fragments

  • Airports are always filled with an unsettling nervous energy because as soon as you enter, you effectively relinquish all control over your travel plans until the time you arrive at your destination. The lines, the security checkpoints, the delays and groundings, and the seemingly random switches in gate numbers and times all seem to conspire against your trip. There are only two positive aspects to a plane ride: the greatly decreased travel time, and the novelty of seeing your house from way high up.

  • My flight didn't serve peanuts. Instead, they had fat-free Sun Chips.

  • I like looking at road maps, and am pretty good at correlating a destination on the map with what I see when driving. I realized that I'd gone too far when my return flight this weekend broke through the clouds and I was able to immediately identify the intersection of Route 50 and I-66. We flew directly over the building where I work and then crossed the Potomac to circle around to Dulles Airport. On our descent, we flew over my old work building and the Dulles Town Center. I didn't recognize any roads on the other side of the Potomac because that's all Maryland, and Maryland doesn't really matter in the grand scheme of things.

  • It's always awkward being the single solo flyer in a row of three people, especially when the pair is composed of old high-society Tallahassee citizens (if such a thing exists) and they look like they expect you to ninja their bags out from under them. Dude was sitting on my seatbelt too.

  • The market for fake souvenirs must be booming. The Atlanta airport is teeming with little kiosks where you can buy your kids trinkets from all the sights you didn't actually see. Want to say you went to the Coca Cola plant? Just visit the Coca Cola kiosk in the airport and get all sorts of hats, buttons, and bottles! That would be a good venture for all you budding entrepreneurs: simply invent a particularly awesome sightseeing attraction that might go on the Mall, and then set up shop in National Airport. You don't even have to create the actual site -- just Photoshop some old monuments together. The fact that your vendor stand is in the airport lends credibility to your fake attraction.

  • On my way to Florida, I think I was in line behind an entire high-school team of Bulgarian tennis players. They all knew that you were supposed to take off your shoes at the security checkpoint and stow them in a bin to go through the scanning machine, but there were no signs saying this anywhere. I bet it's a case of doing what the guy in front of you does, and not common knowledge. Next time I fly, I'll strip down to my undergarments and see if the person behind me does the same.

  • Some airport screeners in a major airport were recently fired for putting each other through the scanner machine after hours. That would be me if I were a screener. It must be one of the most boring jobs of all time, so at least they were keeping things interesting.

  • Lost Episode 2x02 is on tonight at 9 PM. If you missed the first episode, you can catch it again at 8 PM.

    Happy Birthday Anna's mom!

    They said they weren't doing it for commercial reasons but that they wanted to see how visitors would react
    Fake maps fox Shanghai drivers
    Grandma got run over by a reindeer

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