It is now a day later, I am back in Australia and no one else has blogged since my own last post. Everyone really must be at the Mt Pelerin in Hong Kong. I was scheduled to go myself but I could not pass up this trip to France and the discussion on Say.
But let me say this about air travel which gets better and compared to the really old days is incredibly cheap. But there is this one thing. Which is why this story interests me so much:
My own solution was to bring a rubber hammer for the people in front and a plastic helmet to defend myself against the people in the row behind. But it is not a small matter when there is hardly any space to begin with and you have pulled your trusty PC out to do some work. So now someone has come up with a solution:
You know the moment all too well — and dread it. Just as you’re getting a modicum of comfort on a flight, the seat in front suddenly pushes back, depriving you of valuable inches of legroom.
All you can do is to glower in a silent rage at the head of the other passenger, who has decided that by reclining his seat, his comfort is more important than ours.
However, some passengers have decided to get even rather than mad, by investing £13 in a gizmo called a Knee Defender, which its manufacturer claims is as ‘devious as it is ingenious’.
On this flight, the couple in front played gin rummy until the sun went down and then we all went off to sleep with our seats pushed back. But in the day time, I can understand the fury of anyone already crammed into an economy seat having what room there is taken from them. I think of it as the same as talking on the mobile in a loud voice while sitting on the train (and soon on the plane as well).
My own rule:
No pushing seats back until after the evening meal
I understand that on airplanes people have woken early to catch the 8:00 a.m. flight, and others are connecting from flights where whatever it might say on the local clock, it is still past midnight to them. But it is more than courtesy and a kind of etiquette needs to be developed so that at least we can work out who is in the right before the fights break out.
There was a time you could smoke on airplanes as well. Let us hope for a day in the future when people remember the time when you could put your seat back in the middle of the afternoon which by then they will no longer be permitted to do.