Monday, November 29, 2004


Three travel observations, courtesy of the Thanksgiving holiday but having nothing to do with it, and at least a third of which have nothing to do with bathrooms:

On the first leg of my trip to California, passengers were invited to buy movie headphones for $2 and take them for use on future flights. On the second leg, passengers were told headphones cost $2 and discouraged from using any they’d brought on board. I’m still wondering if the airline has unfair expectations or stupid customers. (The policy doesn’t affect me; I almost always bring an assortment of headphones of my own, most stolen from first class as I leave airplanes and stored for future flights.)

At the Dallas/Fort Worth airport, I used a bathroom stall intended for the disabled. Like all such stalls, it was spacious, so someone in a wheelchair could roll in and shift himself onto the toilet. There was something a little odd about it, too: The toilet paper dispenser was on the wall far to the right of the toilet, which was on the left of the stall, and getting to it would require a ridiculously long stretch, one almost certainly overextending and unbalancing the person stretching. That’s silly, I thought, why make it so far away? Oh right, I realized, the wheelchair goes in that great space. Right! That’s where the wheelchair goes — between the toilet and the toilet paper dispenser, at exactly the height where the seat, arms and possibly motor get in the way of the effort. Brilliant. Has this stall ever been used by someone in a wheelchair? I’ll bet it wasn’t designed by someone in a wheelchair.

Finally, now that I have bicoastal experience with Colgate and Crest toothpastes, I can confirm the difference between the two. Crest, when used to brush teeth, soon turns into a froth; Colgate remains a goop, a thick paste, no matter how much the brusher saws away at it.

Anyway, I’m back. And all I can think about is that once airplane flights inspired in me thoughts of class warfare, philosophy and personal resolution; now I return with gripes about $2 headphones and the consistency of toothpastes.



Anonymous said...

Just don't travel on American.

Scape7 said...

Too late!