Wednesday, March 21, 2007

BOOZIN in the friendly skies

Let's see. OK. So lemme get it out of the way and say that there is no possible way for me to fly without BOOZIN. I hate planes and I love BOOZE. BOOZE makes me feel better about both BOOZE and about planes. So, when I get on a plane I have generally already had some BOOZE and I continue to have *more* BOOZE until the plane lands. With this background, the story can proceed but I have a feeling that you can see where this is going.

I'm on a flight from London to Boston last week. Whatever, I'm a lucky guy and this pretty much happens about once a month. So I'm late getting to the airport and I don't have a single second to get any BOOZE before my flight. In fact, they are calling my name over the PA as I run through the terminal to catch my flight and I get there just before they say 'Fuck It' and close the doors. Yup, I'm that guy. But usually it's because I'm running from the bar (Which, as it happens, is what happened on my Boston to London flight. Yes. Really.) and not because I am running from a cab.

So there I am on the plane and fortunately in business class they will serve you BOOZE while they check on all the shit they have to check on and whatever while they get the plane going. So I knock back a couple of cold ones before takeoff. Should be fine now. We depart right on time and there's nothing but a nice smooth 6-hour ride between me and a Friday night outing with some friends. So I hit the wine pretty hard on the way over and all is well.


We get over Boston and the fucking airport is closed due to weather. What!? Yes, we are being rerouted to New York. No worries... I have friends in the city and I have some more BOOZE on the way into JFK. The plane lands and I head to the flight attendant (at this point, I am obviously shattered) and axe her if I can get off the plane and go hang out with my friends. Actually, I told her that I had been planning on taking the train to NY from Boston anyway and wouldn't it be convenient to just get off the plane now. She wasn't going for it. Hey, I can handle this. There is one thing that solves every problem: BOOZE, right? "Could I get another scotch before I sit down?", I axe politely. "Actually, sir, while we are holding on the taxiway we're not allowed to serve alcohol." WTF? They can serve it while we take off. Why not after we've landed? Whatever. I go and sit down.

Well, they tell us they'll be holding us on the plane until the weather in Boston clears and then flying us up to Boston. Fine. Now certainly I can have some BOOZE, and I axe the flight attendant for exactly that. But I am turned down again because, "They don't want the passengers getting drunk while we wait." All right, now fucking seriously, it's fine if I order drink after drink like a chain smoker all the way across the Atlantic for seven fucking hours but now that we're on the ground I'm not allowed to BOOZE. I'm thinking fuck that.

How to get around this? Ah. I have it. Surely my colleagues that were leaving Europe at the same time as me are stuck on planes and I can waste some time talking to them and gathering valuable intelligence regarding the drink service on their flights. I start calling cell phones. And surely they were. We all conference in with each other and commisserate. Turns out the BOOZE faucet is crimped on everyone. This one dude gets on the call after a while. He was conferenced in by a person who was sitting on a runway in Bangor, ME. Says he's in New York. "Which flight?", I ask immediately. "The (popular airline here) one.", he says. I'm on the same plane with him but I don't really like the guy all that much so I don't mention anything of it and the other people on the conference call either miss it or they know I'm avoiding him. Either way, I don't care and it drops.


He starts fucking going on and on about how they're not serving BOOZE on the plane and everybody's uptight but that he has a giant bottle of gin that he picked up at duty-free and he's been hitting off that and it's all good. Oh mother-fucker... now I have to hang out with this guy just to get his BOOZE. You do what you gotta do, I guess. So I mention to him that I think I'm on the same plane and maybe I could get some BOOZE from him.

I end up hanging out with the most boring fucking dude in the whole world while we're held hostage on a plane at JFK for over six hours before we head to Boston. But we polished off the gin and got into Boston at 4AM. I guess that was a lot like how I had originally envisioned my Friday night but with cooler people and in Boston at a bar rather than in NYC on a plane. But, hey, c'est la vie.

No matter how you look at it, I got my BOOZE on for almost 14 hours on Friday! High-five!