I’m sitting at gate 58 at Los Angeles International Airport, waiting for my flight home (the whys and wherefores will come later in another post, I promise), and I’m left alone to ponder the following:

  • Just after I sat down, I spotted a reality show camera crew doing a ‘pick-up’ shot at the next gate over. (A pick-up shot is there the crew will shoot an event, like boarding a plane, out of sequence, to be edited in later. It technically doesn’t “break” the “reality” of the show, since the pick-up shot is just linking two other events that actually happen – it just provides context.) Even though I have less than a passing interest in reality TV, I couldn’t help but wonder what show this was being shot for. The girl ‘boarding’ the plane was either named Gutierez or Martinez (those were the names the gate staff paged before she ‘went down the jetway’. I tried to look for tell-tale clues or markings on the crew’s equipment, but couldn’t find any.
  • Why do Delta’s short-hop flights, like my Newark to Atlanta connection yesterday, have seat-back TVs, but the long-haul flight (ATL to LAX) only has overhead screens that are prone to malfunction or failure? For that matter, why ARE those overhead screens so prone to malfunction or failure? How hard is it to keep an LCD panel working?
  • Why would touching the side of the magnetometer at the security checkpoint cause it to go off? The one I went through earlier here at LAX terminal 5 was very narrow, and my hand nicked the side wall as I went through. I tried again, hunching over with my arms scrunched in front of me, and was fine (aside from looking like an idiot).
  • Why don’t the airlines have the flexibility to press larger planes into service when a flight fills up? The red-eye I’m going to board in about 2 hours (LAX->ATL) is completely jam-packed – every seat is sold. Since there’s clearly enough interest in this flight to fill a 767, why not press a 777 into service instead, and give those of us in steerage economy a little breathing room?

And finally…

  • I wonder how Cheese Day went… I was invited to attend this year, but this trip came up at the last minute.