this has been a topic of conversation this morning as we fly home form Orange county.
actually, it's quite often a top of conversation at our house. i think i may have even blogged about it previously but this morning, it weighs heavy on my mind as i have been treated like a second class citizen, being prodded through the whole flying experience.
it really began this pas thursday as were flying into orange county.
teen ager had been sleeping and we were approaching the airport - and i don't know if you fly frequently and have noticed that the attendants ask yo to put your electronics and things away so much sooner than they used to - this particular flight we had to put our things away about 40 minutes prior to landing.
anyway, they had asked for seat backs and tray tables to be upright and in the stowed position and everything ut back under the seat or into the overhead bins. then teen ager wakes and announces she has to go to the bathroom. i told her they, being the flight attendants, the rulers of the air space, would most likely tell her to sit back down but she decided to try it anyway. she walked back to the restroom and was engaged in conversation with the flight attendant regarding the fasten seat belt sign that was lit and then told she could not use the restroom and had to sit back down.
whatever...the whole point is that in the time it took to have this conversation, teen ager could ahve peed and been back to her seat.
fast forward to this morning:
we arrive at the john wayne airport and check our bags with a fairly nice woman at the ticket counter and proceed to security. where we present our id's and boarding passes with the next stop being the very public disrobing area. i've learned to leave my jewelry in my carry on until i pass through. it saves lots of time since i already have to remove my shoes - and walk either barefoot or in my socks across the gross and disgusting floor that looks like merry maids hasn't been in since 1952, take off my belt and pray that my pants don't fall off before i can reclaim it on the other side. next is the jacket and hat, if you are wearing them. what in the world can you hide in your hat that can't be sensed during the radiation? i don't recall there being a situation where someone tried to hide a bomb in their hat! ok, now that we are nekked, we must take out the laptop and any toiletries we may have with us and zip up the carry on so nothing falls out during the screening process. now we are herded through like cattle with tsa yelling at us to stay with our belongings until they enter the xray, yelling at us to get over to the special radiation they have waiting for us, yelling at us to get our belongings out of the bins, yelling at us to move out of the way of other passengers...passengers? seriously? i am starting to understand how cattle must feel. actually, i think cattle are treated with more respect because they have PETA breathing down the cattle herders necks, protecting the cows rights...as "passengers", we aren't so lucky.
so this morning, we sheeple through this process, because if you want to fly, you have no choice and are held hostage by the friendly skies mafia. but teen ager's bag must be re-scanned because they can't see everything they want to, because they is something suspicious in the bag, because they can. and they do. she has nothing more in her bag than what i have and what kiroman has and both our bags cleared with flying [get it] colors! she has a laptop, ipod, ipad and her phone. tsa rules state that when they gor through your carry on, you are with your able to be with your belongings...and just a few minutes prior to this, teen ager was screeched at for approaching the radiation area before her bags entered xray...even though i was standing right there with it all...so the tsa guy asks if there is anything hazardous in her bag, anything sharp or anything breakable. teen ager makes the mistake of reaching for her bag...at this time the tsa guy looks like he wants to wrap her in a head lock and throw her to the ground, which would have been a major mistake on his part as he would be missing organs vital to keeping his body alive. instead, he jerked her bag away from her, it appears that if they decide they need to re-scan your bag, it becomes temporary property of tsa and you aren't allowed to touch it. he proceeded to rifle through her bag and remove her ipad and takes the bin back to be xray'd. when the bin came back, the tsa guy wouldn't let teen ager take the bin like a normal passenger. tsa guy grabbed instead and started walking away with it. so i asked him if he would sit it down so she could put her bag back together and re-dress...he mumbled something about taking it to an easier location.
once we arrived to his easier location destination, i see that teen ager's wallet and lap top charger are now out of her bag. tsa guy did not remove these items in front of us. so i asked him why they were out. he said there was still an obstruction. i said ok, but you aren't supposed to take those items out if we aren't present. to which he responded that there was still an obstruction. ok, i get that but you took more items out of her bag without her being present and that's against the rules. and i got the same thing, there was still an obstruction. i know, i said, however, we are told to follow your rules and yet you took items out of her bag when you shouldn't have. he agreed that he shouldn't have but it was already done and i could file a complaint with his supervisor. i said that's not the point. you expect us to follow your rules yet you don't even follow your own! he tried to give some lame ass excuse as to why they did it and how it's all video taped and blah blah blah....but my point is simple: they have rules and we must abide by them or they will haul you off to a little room and interrogate you until they either have you arrested or let you go. no, i have not experienced this first hand but i do know someone that has! but then they only follow their guidelines/rules when it suits them and that, my friends, is a bunc of crap! i don't get how they can hold passengers to standards when they can't perform up to their own!
so now we finally get to board the plane and we are waiting for take off. we end up sitting on the plane 35 minutes past our departure time.
so now i am going to expound another thought here:
if for some reason you, the passenger, choose not to make a potty break before you board because, well, you knew you would be ok for another 30 - 40 minutes until the plane reached 10,000 feet and the seat belt light would go off or you just didn't need to go at that point in time. now the plane sits on the runway for that 35 minutes and it's going to be another 30ish minutes before you hit altitude and now, you really have to pee before that stupid light goes out. this could cause some problems!
but i digress. as we sit on the runway, waiting for take off clearance, all passengers were in their seats with their seat belts tightly fastened, i am sitting catty wompess from the attendants and guess what? neither one has their seat belt tightly fastened. they aren't even loosely fastened. they aren't even fastened at all! are you kidding me? once again, we as passengers, are held to a different standard than the rule makers.
congruency, people, congruency.
i watched a man have a conversation with a standing flight attendant while he was trying to enter the restroom. he was only told that the seat belt light was on. he asked what that meant and she told him that he had to go back to his seat. in the the time that this conversation took place, he could have peed and been back to his seat. seriously! more time was wasted with him standing there talking to her.
i'm thinking that they should sell depends at the jet ways to alleviate this whole bathroom issue on the plane...everyone can just pee their pants!
i wish there was a way to infuse every one with congruency thinking.
if you are a rule maker, whether it is as a parent, a boss, ceo, business owner, group leader, teacher or whatever, you need to be aware of your own congruency or lack there of.
your actions must reflect your expectations, that's all i'm sayin'.
i get that they are trying to make it safe for all of us. i get that there are rules to be followed. i get that. what i don't get is why they treat us like we aren't even human. i've been on a few flights lately where the attendants were down right rude and this was one of them! i don't think that's right or fair. personally, i don't care if that last flight they were on sucked. this isn't that flight. they need to greet each flight and each passenger as a brand new day. they should be grateful to have a job. a job htat is actually provided by us, the cattle. if we didn't fly, they sure as heck would not be flight attendants, eh?
i am grateful:
- that flight is over
- to be a happier person than those flight attendants
- for all the wonderful people teen ager was able to meet this weekend - watch for a cal jam post soon
- not to have to fly anytime soon
- not all flight attendants are crunchy [crabby] and once in awhile you come across a humane tsa agent
just breathing isn't living!