daily preciousness

Thursday, December 28, 2000

southwest airlines sucks

I just got in from my Christmas holiday this morning at 3:30 a.m. It was a long day.

Let's just get it straight right off the bat. Southwest Airlines better have a strong interest in Buddhism. Because I can't think of any reason why I should forgive them for the seemingly endless cycle of suffering I went through yesterday because of them.

Yes, like the pitiful human being that I am, I realized that all life is suffering and pain during the time I spent yesterday under the auspices of Southwest Airlines.

The plane that was to take me from Jackson, Mississippi to Baltimore, Maryland, arrived two hours late. That was *just* late enough to make me miss the last commuter train from the airport to DC, where I am staying.

When the plane finally arrived, there was a so-called "medical emergency" which further delayed my boarding. Now, I'm full of compassion and I've just got gobs of bleeding heart sympathies, but just because somebody is having heart palpatations or is going into labor, I don't think that they should get any special treatment. If they want to become ill and inconvenience everyone, let them do it on their own time. Or let them do it at work. (Maybe the rest of the office will get the day off.) But don't allow a so-called "emergency" mess up my transfer!

Well, it *did* mess me up royally. Because not only was I too late for the last commuter train, I had to wait until the late late late late Amtrak train. (Amtrak is a Yankee word for overpriced trains that smell funny.)

The flight itself wasn't so bad -- the sassy stewardesses -- um, I mean "attendants" -- were funny and full of attitude. The honey-roasted peanuts? I give them a B+. (They would've earned an A, if only the portions would've been larger.)

The ride from Union Station was in a creaky "Senate Taxi" cab that was piloted by Sergei, the balding Russian who kept clearing out his ear with his little finger. I guess the vodka makes for itchy ears.

But I won't dwell on that. Let's try to remain cheerful and optimistic, shall we? Okay. I'll give it a try.

Well, the bright spot during the long, trying day was either (A) spending an extra-long time with the family at the Jackson airport or (B) the wacky Russian cabbie who took me home from Union Station or (C) the wonderful serendipity of meeting a friendly New Orleans girl at the Baltimore Airport who kept me company on the way home.

So what's the lesson to this sorry tale? Well, first of all, don't piss me off with any fake medical trauma. Second, never ever fly Southwest Airlines. Lastly, if you insist on the first two, at least supply me with a comical Russian taxi driver.

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