Thursday, February 17, 2011

Coffee? Tea? Weasel Spit?

From Dave Barry Talks Back, the best I have read so far.

"….So I was getting on a plane in Seattle, and I was feeling a touch nervous because that very morning a plane was forced to make an emergency landing at that very airport after a window blew out at 14,000 feet and a passenger almost got sucked out of the plane headfirst.

This is the kind of thing that the flight attendants never mention during the Preflight Safety Demonstration, although maybe they should. I bet they could put on a very impressive demonstration using an industrial vacuum cleaner and a Barbie doll, and we passengers would NEVER take our seat belts off, even when the plane landed. We'd walk out into the terminal with our seats still strapped to our backs.

Anyway, the good news is that the passenger in Seattle was wearing his seat belt, and the other passengers were able to pull him back inside, and he's expected to make a complete recovery except for no longer having a head. This will definitely limit his ability to enjoy future in-flight meals ("Would you like a dense omelet-like substance, sir? Just nod your stump.")

Ha, ha! I am just joshing of course. The man retained all his major body parts. But just the same I don't like to hear this type of story because I usually take a window seat, because I want to know if a wing falls off. The pilot would never mention this. It is a violation of Federal Aviation Administration regulations for the pilot to ever tell you anything except that you are experiencing “a little turbulence.”

You frequent fliers know what I’m talking about. You’re flying along at 500 miles an hour, 7 miles up, and suddenly there’s an enormous shuddering WHUMP. Obviously the plane has struck something at least the size of a Winnebago motor home-in fact sometimes you can actually see Winnebago parts flashing past your window-but the pilot, trying to sound bored, announces that you have experienced “a little turbulence.” Meanwhile you just know that up in the cockpit they’re hastily deploying their Emergency Inflatable Religious Shrine.

Here’s what bothers me. You know how, during the Preflight Safety Demonstration, they tell you that in the event of an emergency, oxygen masks will pop out of the ceiling? My question is: Who wants oxygen? If I’m going to be in an emergency seven miles up, I want nitrous oxide, followed immediately by Emergency Intravenous Beverage Cart Service, so that I and my fellow passengers can be as relaxed as possible. (“Wow! Those are some beautiful engine flames!”)

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