Onward Bound Humor

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Monday, March 10, 2008

375. Washington Post Initational - Week 747

Report From Week 747

In which we sought some amusing ways to improve the experience of airline travel. My, were you people bitter -- Heaven forbid that you are a fat person or a parent if you ever ride with these entrants. Numerous Losers suggested having the planes just travel on the ground; that passengers should get to vote people off the plane; potluck meals; and, for some reason, in-flight karaoke. Some people sent in ideas that were entirely too sensible, like one from Tom Witte of Montgomery Village that people without luggage should get to sit down first, or Steve Buttry's suggestion to change smoking lounges to cellphone lounges.

Have the first-class passengers board last, to spare the rest of us their smirks as we file in. (Steve Langer, Chevy Chase; Rick Haynes, Potomac)

Parents with small children must wait to board the plane until after it has taken off. (Jeff Brechlin, Eagan, Minn.)

One of the few items arguably more irritating than sitting for an hour on the tarmac: It works for FedEx: Instead of this complicated network of city-to-city flights, just send everyone to a holding pen in Memphis, and then when there are enough passengers for a flight to, say, Yazoo City, just load up and send them out! While waiting, passengers in the pen could fold napkins or something. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Install removable tray tables. Then when the person in front of you reclines his seat to the supine position, you can place your tray, drinks and all, right on his face. (Beverley Sharp, Washington)

Install a timer that automatically pops open the bathroom door after three minutes of use. (Larry Yungk, Arlington)

Just take out that whole al-Qaeda cell of grannies with nail files and hand lotion and be done with it. (Pam Sweeney, Germantown)

Serve the meals already in barf bags. (John Kupiec, Fairfax)

Seat the smelly fat guys next to the screaming children: more space for the former, muffling the latter, and saving me from both. (Jacob Aldridge, Gaythorne, Australia, a First Offender)

When the person in front of you reclines too far into your space, his entire seat snaps shut like a bear trap for the remainder of the flight. (Anne Paris, Arlington)

Hire a second person to handle luggage at Dulles. (Steve Buttry, Herndon)

Cut down on restroom use by giving passengers a third of a can of soft drink instead of half a can. And the airlines might save another $10 a flight! (Russell Beland, Springfield)

In the spirit of paying people to give up their seats on overbooked flights, pay me for not buying a ticket in the first place. (Ellen Raphaeli, Falls Church)

A free drink for everyone surrounding a crying baby; two free drinks for the baby. (J. Larry Schott, Gainesville, Fla.)

Passengers are seated in sections based on personal appearance; you can use frequent-flier miles to upgrade from "Mildly Grotesque" to "Not Bad" or "Sorta Hot." (Jeff Brechlin)

Land the planes backward to reduce that lurching feeling in the seat. (Dave Prevar, Annapolis)

Oxygen masks are so sterile and uninteresting -- we should get replicas of attractive celebrities that inflate and drop from the ceilings for us to press our lips against. If oxygen still came out, even better. (Dan Ramish, Vienna)

Allow infants and small children to relax during the flight inside specially padded and soundproofed overhead compartments in the rear of the plane. Water and food pellets can be provided as in guinea pig cages. (Roberta Wilkes, Seattle, a First Offender)

Install onboard vending machines, so the flight attendants can concentrate on flying the plane. (John O'Byrne, Dublin)

Attach a toilet to the front of the beverage cart that's blocking the aisle. (Ben Aronin, Washington; Russ Taylor, Vienna)

Award my mileage points on the basis of where my luggage travels. (Ellen Raphaeli)

Everyone submits a photo when booking. At check-in, for $50 you can switch from the seat next to the fat guy or the 2-year-old to the seat next to the cute girl. For $100, she can get away from you and sit next to the fat guy. (Michael Fransella, Arlington)

When passengers are trapped in a plane on the tarmac for more than five hours, they get to sell the plane and split the proceeds. (Cy Gardner, Arlington)

Create a no-frills airline called My Corporate Jet, so it sounds better when people ask how I got to the meeting. (Russ Taylor)

Tape baseball cards to the wheels so the plane makes a cool race car noise as it takes off. (Steve Langer)

Emergency slide Fridays! (Randy Lee, Burke)


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