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Home > Blog > Why I should not be allowed on planes before 9AM
Out of Our Minds
Wednesday, April 28, 2004 8:05 AM
Why I should not be allowed on planes before 9AM
David Weinberger on Life

So, yesterday I'm on the 7AM flight from DC to Boston, a smallish plane with limited overhead storage and meal service that consists of smelling the coffee on the breath of the person next to you.

At the end of the flight, I stand on the tarmac, waiting for them to bring me the garment bag that I gate-checked. Bag after bag arrives and passenger after passenger leaves. Finally the last bag comes out and goes to the person next to me. I'm mentally composing the rant I'm going to deliver: How can an airline lose a bag that they took from you as your boarded? All they had to do was carry the bag 30 feet into the belly of the plane. How hard can it be to...

And then I realized that I have been holding my garment bag in my left hand the entire time. I hadn't gate-checked it after all.

I nod as if I've just completed whatever important task has kept me waiting on the tarmac and walk inside, the rush of unwarranted anger giving way to internal embarrassment.

Surely this sort of thing has never happened to you...


6 comments

Rennie - 5/1/2004 12:48:26 PM
These are my favorite types of stories, the business faux pas.
I can also, sadly, relate to the fashion debacle.

In my case it was my first 'job' job in the late 80s and I was smartly dressed in the latest line of business wear from Casual Corner, complete with silk bow tie and navy pumps.

But only one pump was navy, the other was black, and one had a lower heel. Until I could hobble over to the Macy's next door to buy new shoes, I was limping down the hallway, still trying to project that 'promote Me to Senior sales assistant' image and energy.

Not as bad, though, as the day at that same job when i went to a client meeting after lunch with a pasta noodle perched on my lapel.

(remarkably, I got the promotion, and would call 'meetings' whenever possible, and position myself at the head of the conference room table so that anyone walking by could look in and see from my solemn expression and 3 pt. agenda that I was holding a Very important Sales Assistant meeting.)
lee wilder - 4/30/2004 10:14:04 AM
have not done the checked bag trick but one morning I dressed int the dark out of respect for my now ex-husband (talk about a wasted effort!). I scampered off to the airport for a red eye flight. Groggily, I boarded plane, returned to slumberland and arrived in Raleigh to discover... that I was wearing the jacket from one suit and the skirt from a VERY DIFFERENT suit. I spent most of the day trying to position my briefcase so that this appalling fashion disaster might escape notice. Unfortunately, it did not escape notice and my firm did NOT get the business!
Rennie - 4/29/2004 6:51:23 AM
David, good stuff. That *nod* to no one is hilarious.

I had a similar experience a few weeks ago, but my cover-up was a bit more elaborate and drawn out, and I don't have the excuse of early morning.
Greg - 4/29/2004 1:30:18 AM
I laughed out loud after reading that. Although I've not had that exact experience, I know I've had a number quite similar (only on occasion I got to the explosion of anger to have the person politely explain how silly I was).

My favorite is the pencil/pen in your mouth that you can't find until you say 'mmwherrrr heeee hekkk izzz maaa feennnn' (trying to phonetically spell the pen-in-mouth-spoken-word) out loud and realize how silly you are.

Good story, thanks for sharing...
anita - 4/28/2004 2:51:08 PM
yes, and in this age of multi-tasking and mental preoccupation, how many times do we frantically search for our car keys as they jangle in our pockets -- or we hold them in our hand.
Heath - 4/28/2004 1:51:58 PM
Oh, David, I feel your pain. How funny -- and how strong a reminder that sometimes, we have no idea whatsoever what we're doing.

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