I recently (this morning, that is) relocated (temporarily) to Santa Barbara. I’m here for 3 weeks to get as much (or as little) work done as possible. To help me out, SB had a crappy little rainstorm that made New Haven look welcoming by comparison. Excellent. As we speak, Left 4 Dead 2 is downloading to my MBP (an older version, which will, I suspect, necessitate super-low graphical settings. Sigh) at the blistering speed of 200 k/s. That might not sound that fast to you lot (especially anybody reading this from another country, where they don’t have draconian rules about bandwidth and how much you can draw down, grumble, grumble, grumble), but for a person struggling under the heel of perpetually erratic, 150 k/s if you’re lucky AT&T “service,” this shit is a godsend.
But I’m here to talk about Travel. I’d forgotten that many of the simple, amazing experiences in life can only be had when traveling. You forget about these little joys until a bout of travel inextricably pounds them back into your memory. This particular journey was especially memorable. So, in absolutely no discernible order, the great things about catching a 6:30 am flight from JFK to LAX (and connecting from there to SB):
The New York Subway System hating my face. Trying to catch the 1 downtown, after one stop (we only needed one more to switch over!) the guy comes on the PA and says due to obstructions, we are taking the express route and going all the way to Staten Island or some shit. Then we get off, and have to change trains 3 more times just to get back to the C (I think), just so we can get up to the E. Win! This is why I did not sleep, but instead spent the hours between 1230 and 330 AM fighting off my friend’s amorous cat while writing a King Arthur: The Role Playing Wargame (actually quite good) review. This is why I leave 3 hellish hours before my flight is supposed to leave. It’s all for you, MTA.
Horrible Red-faced Middle Aged White Business Guys. You know that new movie with George Clooney where he plays a charming, hi-larious racist consultant? If any of the business guys I have to travel with (every time I fly) were like him, the world would be slightly less bad. He would be a major improvement. He is (supposedly) funny. He does not breath heavily into your face, in some strange attempt to get you to load your backpack into the tiny overhead compartment faster. He does not, as they do, clip all 10 of his hilarious cell phone holsters to the seatback pocket, in case someone sends him an impossible fucking phone call. He does not, I would hope, fume and mutter, as his much luckier companions go ahead of him, thanks to their First-Class, Executive, Emperor, Platinum, or (of course) Latinum level flier status. [On a side note, I love the Emperor Class fliers. They take it to the limit every time, rushing to get to the spots they have already paid for, negating the need for the rush. Never change, Imperators]. It’s funny, because if his company were bigger, or he was a better salesguy (or refrigerator negotiator, or dog food research litigator, or whatever), he would be in the Admiral’s Club! Oh, the humanity.
United Airlines, for being just plain awesome. I love that, after mysteriously delaying my first flight, they send me a phone message (which I cannot receive until after I land!) informing me that, thanks to their delay, I will miss my connection, and they have moved me to a flight that takes off 9 hours later. So when I arrive (1 minute after my flight is supposed to have left), I receive their “Rapid Flight Change Update Notification Message” (no fucking kidding) about the flight they just made me miss (except Owen and I sprinted for the plain and caught it, because we rock). I love you guys. Keep on filling your flights with the smell of desiccated, rotting alien flesh, an I’ll keep on flying with you (also, keep on selling “sandwich packs” that can kill with a look, for only $9)!