Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Following Directions

I used to like flying. Not so much anymore for all the reasons other people don't like flying -- the hassles of TSA and the dumb changes in the airlines and the packed planes. On the flights I took this past week, though, I am adding another reason to the list: passengers who are above following directions.

Every plane was packed full. Before you got on board, it was announced to please PLEASE put small bags under the seat to save on bin space. The flight attendants kept reminding passengers to do that when people were going to their seat.

Yeah, I'm sure you can figure it out. Those requests and directions are for other people, not the special people on my planes.

Well, call me cranky, but I was in no mood to put up with the special people. My carry on suitcase is small and fits nicely into the bin. My bag with books, etc. fits perfectly under the seat. But I couldn't fit my suitcase into the bin because some moron had put his tiny backpack, maybe filled with some extra underwear and toothpaste, into the bin. Like I said, I was cranky. I pulled it out and asked who it belonged to. A 60something man in a jacket and nice pants turned around. I asked if there was room under the seat for it. He scowled and said yes. I tossed it to him and said, "You were asked to put it there in the first place so we could all have access to the bins." He gave me the hairy eyeball, but I gave it right back to him. The flight attendant smiled at me. My seatmate whispered, "Good for you." Hell, the guy had so little in that backpack that it would have fit on top of my suitcase with ease.

Had I not said something, the flight attendant would have. It may have been the first time where I saw flight attendants taking backpacks, purses, and the like out of the bins and telling the owner to put it under the seat.

On one of the flights home, the people sharing the row with me put their suitcases in sideways, taking up twice the space, because they were a) stuffed too full and b) stuck. I told the gentleman (using the term loosely)that he needed to put his suitcase in straight, not sideways. He growled at me and said he'd do what he pleased, besides the suitcase didn't fit if he did it that way. I said, "It doesn't fit because you are trying to stuff it in against the latches." He started to growl at me until I showed him how to get his suitcase in the bin without hogging all the space. But the point is, had I not shown him, he had no desire to figure it out. He and his wife were going to take all of the space in one bin with their two suitcases. And again, the flight attendants went down the aisle and made passengers fix their bags to be more considerate.

There is enough to be annoyed with when flying. I just don't get why the passengers have to add to that annoyance by their selfishness with storing their belongings or following simple directions.