In light of Ryanair deciding to charge for bathroom use aloft and Spirit Airlines announcing a fee for carry-on luggage, I thought it would be fitting to share with any young'uns out there this Carol Burnett show skit mocking the 1970's precursor to all this nickle-and-diming of the airplane passenger - the NoFrills flight marketing idea. Please take special note of Tim Conway's facial expressions and body language - the man was a comic genius.
I suppose I should be glad that air travel is not in our budget. In fact, I haven't been on a plane since we changed duty stations back in 1994. Larry (back in those halcyon, security-free pre-9/11 days) escorted me and a toddling Anna and a 3-year-old Theo onto the plane and settled us in for what should have been a 5-hour flight. After he left, the pilot announced that we would be sitting on the tarmac for an hour while they "changed a faulty engine." Feeling apprehensive about this faulty-engine business (not to mention being trapped on an airplane with 2 small children for an extra hour), I asked the passenger behind me - in a pathetic, begging-for-reassurance, please-lie-to-me tone of voice - if a faulty engine were normal.
"Are you kidding?" he said. "The airlines have just gone to hell since deregulation."
Thanks, buddy. Just what I needed to hear...