Monday, January 28, 2008

Airplane Ruminations

I've been flying a fair bit lately and that got me ruminating. If you know the answers to any of these, speak up.

  • Why do the window shades need to be open during take-off and landing? Does the pilot need to check his blind-spot or something?

  • Has any of this safety equipment ever actually been tested?

  • Has anyone ever survived a water landing? Will my seat cushion really float?

  • Can I use the oxygen mask during normal flight? That sounds relaxing.

  • A couple flights ago, my inbound plane was delayed because they had to stop unexpectedly for fuel. I asked how often that happens and the friendly rep told me that it's up to the pilots. Excuse me, but there are somethings I'd just assume leave up to the computer and calculating fuel requirements is one of them. Here's an idea: in bad weather, add extra fuel.

  • How fast do planes go when taking off? When landing? Answer: 150-180mph. It doesn't feel that fast, but I guess I've never driven a plane down the turnpike before.

  • How do planes make up time in the air? Do they fly faster? Lower?

  • Take a step back from the whole airline industry for a second and ask yourself, "how in the world did we get here?"

  • How can the women in 1E drink two Rum and Cokes ($7/each) but deny her daughter a sandwich because it's "too expensive."

  • Why is the women in 1E obnoxiously loud and somehow immune to the powers of my noise-cancelling headphones?

  • Why does everyone line up 15 minutes before anyone actually starts boarding? Can't we all just agree to wait sitting down?

  • How much does body weight affect gas mileage on the road or in the air?

  • How old is too old? Answer: the partially petrified couple in 3D/3E

  • How else was flying different back when you could smoke on an airplane?