The story of Chuckles and Smalls

Ok, ready for another travel rant? Thought so.

As regional travel increases, many airlines have been operating smaller regional jets from companies like Bombardier and Embraer. Gone are the days of always expecting to ride on a big Boeing 757 everywhere you go. I primarily fly American Airlines since I live about 10 minutes from their hub in Dallas.

If you have traveled at all over the last 20 years, you know that airplanes (even those fancy 757s) have progressively turned into sardine cans where passengers are crammed in. The worst legroom I have ever had was on a recent TAM Airlines 737 round trip flight from Sao Paulo to Porto Alegre in Brazil. Ass to the back of the seat and my knees were touching the seat in front of me.

Nice.

Most of the regional jets and other jets by American have decent configurations, and they actually went and removed seats from certain aircraft to increase the overall legroom. Some of us are tall enough have to duck when boarding the CRJs and ERJs that American Eagle flies, but once we sit down it’s not so bad. You have to pay attention to your posture to get the best comfort (meaning, ass to the back of the seat, no slouching).

Market pressures have dictated that many more regional jets be purchased, and some are even used on longer runs (such as Arkansas to New York, LaGuardia, or Dallas to Minneapolis-St. Paul) simply because travelers prefer more options and more flights. It’s more cost effective to purchase smaller jets and run them full more frequently, than purchase larger ones that could be empty.

So just remember, consumer preferences and buying patterns have dictated this.

As I was boarding a flight to XNA on Wednesday morning, a rather familiar and tired conversation started as I watched a portly gentleman slide his way down the isle and belly up next to me, and a tallish (I was just a smidge taller than he) gentleman took up temporary residence behind me.

“Either I am getting bigger or these planes are getting smaller! Hah-heh-chuckle-heh-me-oh-my.”

Ol’ Chuckles there lit up the plane with that original humor at 7am. Then Smalls behind me starts slouching in his seat so that his knees hit the back of my seat and push it every few minutes.

Knees in your back is just about as bad as the person who hangs on to the back of your seat for leverage to sit down (or collapse) into their seat. Why is it bad? Cause it puts the seat into the little known “Ejector-Seat Mode.” Pull back, then when the fall into the chair is done, release forward in a spring like fashion. Small children go “Wheee” as they ride the airplane seat ride.

I try to be respectful of my fellow passengers. Watch the knees so you don’t bother the guy in front. If the guy behind you does not have his seat leaned back, don’t lean yours back. If he has a laptop, let him know you are coming back, or just come back VERY slowly so he can move it out of the way. Keep the gassy emissions to a minimum. If possible, eat off the plane and don’t bring food on. Put one of your bags under the seat.

Anyway… since that guy decided to throw his consideration of others out the window, so did I. Boy I’m sure it was unpleasant for him.

I had chicken enchiladas the previous night.

2 Responses to “The story of Chuckles and Smalls”

  1. auntie ashley Says:

    Branden! Now you and Dad share farting-on-the-plane-to-get-back-at-someone stories awww how cute.

  2. captbrando’s log » Blog Archive » On holiday! Says:

    […] The Story of Chuckles and Smalls […]

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