21 August 2010

Rants from the Airport Rat

Yesterday flying home I found my blood pressure rising more than a dozen times. It was supposed to be a simple 1 connection flight home and routine in my eyes. Well. Pretty routine. I was scared shitless of how delayed my second flight would be. It was out of the lovely Ohare airport and I've learned that anything after noon will most likely be delayed due to one panty waste reason or another. Let me take you for some highlights (or lowlights, however you want to see it) of my travels.

The morning was pretty uneventful and I made my way toward the airport and that brings me to rant #1. NJDOT really fucked up here and got my blood pressure to rise. All them fuckers drive like raped apes in Jersey. Their bright idea is to put stop signs at the end of the on ramp. Yeah. Bright fucking idea. Let's make a vehicle come to a complete stop and try to merge into a busy instate from that stopped position in 2 seconds. I was ready to shit myself. That is dumbassery beyond my comprehension. Why don't you start putting in intersections on an interstate too while you are at it asshats? Then you wonder why there are crashes and deaths in your work zone.

I got to the airport and returned my car and the shuttle was waiting to go back to the terminal. That was a nice touch. I got dropped off at the right terminal and proceeded to check in. The nice gentleman who was working behind the counter had a great sense of humor by asking me if my bag was being checked to go to xyz but really it was going to Singapore. HA! He admitted that checked baggage delivery is a crap shoot at best! Gotta love it. He is one I'd like to commend.

Next up was security. Oh lawdy was this going to be fun! There seemed to have been a trend within the last year to put up experience lanes. It broke down entrances for casual travelers, intermediate travels, expert travelers, and family/lots o liquid lanes. I've noticed that this don't mean shit anymore. It's always casual travelers and lots o liquid lanes. Somehow they both merge together so it doesn't mean shit. Be it a Friday morning, past business red eye time, this was going to be fun. Oh and it was.

First off, the parents who bring their brood of children under the age 6. There were a couple of families in line. How the hell can someone afford to take their 4 children plus themselves on an airplane these days?? That's besides the point. First family brought their rec room with them and had to get it all on the belt into the xray machine. At this point they started lining up for the metal detector. Yeah. Almost all of them had their flip flops on yet including the parents. Soooooo wait for them to get that situated. Then try to explain to a 4 year old girl to not touch the metal detector as you walked through was a treat. Before all of this was the mother/son combo that had issues finding all of their metal. They finally gave up on the son and pulled him over for the wand.

Just as I thought I was having the end in sight, I hear the dude at the xray perch call for a bag check. Shit. He and the bag checker bring this suitcase back to the intake belt and crack it open. The owner was a lady with a 5 year old girl and it appeared the lady was also with her parents. The TSA staff cracked open her suitcase and started to pull out family sized bottles of salon shampoo and conditioner and full sized bottles of body wash for her and her daughter, and full sized hair styling products. HELLO! What fucking rock have you been living under lady?!? You can't take that shit through security!!!! This is not new. Even if you are too dumb to watch the news, there are signs all over the airport about this. If you are too damn dumb to read the signs, they also make announcements every 30 seconds about the 3 oz liquid rule. OMG! That lady needs to have her daughter taken away for fear of her life! If this dumb box can't figure out the liquids rule, how the hell can she safely raise a kid??? That's a bit harder and more brain intensive in my book! Thus ends this ends the rant about the douchecanoe.

I finally made it through the metal detector and the lovely old lady pulled me over for a complete pat down. That was a nice touch. She could have bought me dinner at least or spooned for a bit after.

I trudged to my gate and notice it's already looking pretty full. No biggie. I score something to drink and settle myself in. As we get closer to the time, they start asking for volunteers to get bumped because they oversold the flight. Great! Packed in like sardines in a dixie cup! I actually entertained the thought and went up to the counter to offer my leave if they could put me on the tiny tube a few concourses down that is a direct flight to home. No dice. They over sold that one too. Dammit. Looks like I'm heading to Ohare yet. The boarding process begins and they have TSA set up and they are doing random screens at the gate. I haven't seen that in a couple of years. I think the last time I saw that was during the presidential elections and I was going to where Obama had a rally. Amazingly enough this didn't create too big of a back up. What did create the back log is the next thing that chaps my ass.

Since the advent of the pay for checked baggage, everyone has been trying to pack their whole trip into a minisuitcase and bring the damn thing on the plane. They then try to put them in the overhead bins and fight with them to make them fit. All of this while people are trying to get to their seat and get the hell out of the way. This flight they did gate check. Not even the wait for your shit on the jetway check. It was the heres your claim check and get your shit off the baggage claim. Hmmm....Just like a checked bag! They didn't have to pay however. This created a delay of course. Most other flights they do this and you have to wait for your carry on bag to show up on the jet way. You still have to wait just like checked baggage! Except you are in the way of people who are trying to get the hell out of there! At first I was appalled by Spirit Airlines charging for a carry on bag but now I'd like to commend them. Actually, here's what the airlines need to do. They need to increase their ticket price by $20 and include the first checked bag! It will speed up the boarding process, decrease the cost of gate check tickets, and increase customer satisfaction. Der...done with baggage rant.

The flight to Ohare was uneventful between 2 wet behind the ears boys. Either their girl friends or mommies dressed them because they were dressed too nice to do that on their own. We all slept. I was in the middle. I don't like the middle. On a plane that is :) I worked hard on not tipping over and drooling on them. I did wake myself up snoring a bit again. The seats were bigger than usual too so that was nice. I made it to Ohare and started in on my normal routine of finding me a damn hot dog. They moved my normal hot dog place and I eventually did find it. I had a 2 hour layover so I had plenty of time to eat. I hung out at different gates because mine was just full. This brings me to my next rant.

Shame on United Airlines. Their dumbassery makes me want to call them out by name. I know I'm on a small plane that doesn't take the most priority in the grand scheme of your flights to LGA or LAX. I do however feel like I should be treated like a customer and not a sore on your ass. That's how I felt. This tiny gate had 4 flights all going out within a half hours time. There are 50 seats on each plane so this equals at most 200 passengers. On average I would still say 125 passengers. How many seats were in this terminal? Maybe 50 at best. Most of us had to stand in the hallway or they overtook the gate across the way. We were not important enough to have a big enough gate to seat everyone. Fuck you United Airlines. Thanks for making me feel like a piece of unwanted shit on your airlines. I will let my travel arrangers know this so I can avoid you like the plague again.

That flight was a quick flight and we made it out ontime and home ontime. That was a big shocker. My bag came in a timely fashion and then I had to make the 2 hour drive home. Yeah. That was a nightmare. Mother Nature decided it would be fun for me to drive through 3 severe thunderstorms along the way. I did make it home in one piece and that is where I've been since.

End rant. Time to go scrub the bathroom.


Evil Twin's Wife said...

And now I know why I haven't flown in 30 years. LOL.

bikinfool said...

A two hour drive from the airport to home? Ouch! That would seriously screw up my travel planning.

As for the rest of it? Lets just thank hijackers, terrorists, the airlines and the federal government for trying to make us all want to stay home instead. Fuckers.

I gotta fly in October and you're making me want to drive instead.