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Chief Jack's Galley

There's a place for people who laugh at nothing...


January 12th, 2006

(no subject) @ 02:26 pm

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The flight I took home last night was on possibly the oldest and worst-maintained Boeing 767 in Delta's fleet. A number of overhead bins kept opening, particularly during take-off and landing, in some cases spilling the contents (someone almost got clunked with a laptop, which probably needs a trip to the laptop doctor today). The crew finally resorted to taping them shut with masking tape. I'm dead serious.

Furthermore, I was seated on the aisle in the center section, in the row where they hang the auxiliary movie screen. Why Delta has to show a movie on the redeye flights, I have no idea; everyone around me seemed to be asleep. Fortunately, I was able to sleep through the images of The Corpse Bride (not my first choice of movie viewing--sorry, gang) flashing five inches from my nose.

Of course, the corker was, when it came time to take the screen down, the flight attendants couldn't do it, meaning that I and several of my closest friends from the trip had to wait while they called "the guy" to fix it. Needless to say, I was the last guy off the plane. Which wasn't bad when you consider that, by the time I got to the baggage claim area, the only bag on the carousel was mine.

Has anyone else noticed that, with the proliferation of cellular technology, airports have become one huge phone booth? I don't mind people talking on the phone, but when they're trying to talk on the phone and are walking five inches from my ass, oblivious to the fact that there's a 350 lb man walking slowly in front of them, I have to wonder. I guess I've never mastered the art (?) of talking on the phone while walking at full speed. I wish a lot more people would forget how to do it. The other thing that gets me is, nearly everyone on the plane was talking on the phone while trying to get settled in. It was 10:30 at night. Who the hell are they talking to? And then, the minute the wheels hit the tarmac, the phone's out and on and they're making phone calls at 6:30 in the morning. I mean, really. Do these people have to spend every waking hour on the goddamn phone?
 
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From:halfmoon_mollie
Date:January 12th, 2006 11:34 am (UTC)
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I know cell phones have their (good) uses. But you know, I hate it when I get on the train, pull out a good book and settle and the people around me all pull out cell phones. Laptops are okay...at least they are usually quiet.

Or, go to the top of the CN Tower (for example) and what do you hear? "Hey, guess where I am?"

When I got back from my trip to PEI and tried to call my brother from the airport in Rochester,I could NOT find a pay phone - and I don't have a cell phone. I ....

oh never mind. this is YOUR space, and I'm taking it over.

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From:john_holton
Date:January 12th, 2006 11:39 am (UTC)
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You can mouth off in my space anytime you like.

I swapped a bunch of American Express points for a set of Bose noise-cancelling headphones. They're wonderful, if a bit pricey. They do a great job of blocking the idiots surrounding me.

I would love to be able to work on my laptop on a plane, but the seats are so close and I'm so big that I can't get the tray table down. Oh, well, it's a good time to catch up on my reading or sleep.
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From:halfmoon_mollie
Date:January 12th, 2006 12:09 pm (UTC)
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Coming back from a trip...I was in a seat on the train in front of someone who spent all the time between Buffalo and here talking to his girlfriend on the cell phone. He was not quiet (he wasn't noisy, either....) but he was certainly annoying. He made arrangements to meet her later that evening.

About 15 minutes before we were supposed to pull into the station, he hung up from talking to his girlfriend and called his wife. "Oh, yes, darlin', I'll be there in a few minutes, I can't wait to see you."

Had I seen him talking to anyone in the train station, I hope I would have found a way to say something..."Oh hey, I heard you making arrangements to go to Oneida tonight. Could you give me a ride? I sat right in front of you on the train and I heard you talking...."
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From:john_holton
Date:January 12th, 2006 03:15 pm (UTC)
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I can remember one time being in an airport and overhearing a phone conversation. It was a sales rep from one of our competitors talking to his office about a call he had made that afternoon to a company that I knew we were bidding with as well. He went on at great length about how the prospect liked them better than us, and how it was going to be a slam-dunk, and went into a lot of detail about where they saw the competitive advantages etc. When he finally rang off, I walked up and handed him my business card. He turned all different colors...
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From:annef
Date:January 12th, 2006 01:00 pm (UTC)
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Not having been to the top of the CN Tower in aeons (that's for the tourists, thanks--been there, done that, not willing to pay 20 bucks to do it again), I can't testify to that. But I _can_ testify to overhearing MANY cellphone conversations on Toronto Transit that run along the lines of "Yes, I'm on the bus, it's just turning the corner, I'll be there in five minutes." For crying out loud, surely the person you're talking to can _wait_ that five minutes to hear the sound of your voice? Live, in person? *snort*

Though the most annoying cellphone conversation I ever overheard (and why does everyone have to shout into the damn things?) was a woman on a bus saying, repeatedly, "Yes, I use conditioner. I'm telling you, I USE conditioner. No, I do, I use conditioner" until everyone on the entire bus knew she used conditioner and wished she'd shut up.

I did own a cellphone for awhile. It was a total waste of money as I hardly ever used it. Not interested in another one, thanks.
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From:john_holton
Date:January 12th, 2006 03:23 pm (UTC)
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I think the cellphone is a fantastic tool. It gives a person a way to make a call in an emergency, it turns out being a lot cheaper than land line (particularly for long distance), and it's a lifeline for a person who travels (like me). The problem, as you point out, isn't one of the technology, it's the impolite ways that people use the technology. The whole notion of common courtesy has been lost somewhere, and it's not just limited to the cellphone; it's the laptop, the Blackberry, the pager, and everything else. There's nothing more annoying than watching someone peck away at their keyboard or scroll through messages when you're trying to talk to them, or in the middle of a meeting where their attention is needed. I flat out tell people in the classroom to turn their cellphones off, and if it rings while I'm talking, it'll cost them a quarter.
From:siliconshaman
Date:January 12th, 2006 12:16 pm (UTC)
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John, I suggest you wander over to the latest post in sailorjim's journal, I think you have the answer to him wondering who'd call a cell phone call center at the butt-crack hours of the morning!
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From:bayarts
Date:January 12th, 2006 06:36 pm (UTC)
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I absolutely HATE Delta! Well...as much as I can actually "hate" anything. They just keep getting worse and worse. Sorry to hear of your rough experience with them.

Also sorry that we couldn't hook up this time around. Is just a very busy time for me right now. One of your trips out here we will though.
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From:john_holton
Date:January 13th, 2006 06:31 am (UTC)
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Look for me in the March/April timeframe. If everything works as it normally does, I'll be back at the customer then.

Here in Atlanta, Delta's about the only game in town. Next time, though, I'm taking America West. My experiences have been much better on them, and even if I have to make a connection in Phoenix, it's still 100 percent better than monkeying with Delta.

Chief Jack's Galley

There's a place for people who laugh at nothing...