Monday, July 27, 2009

O Hairy Day

Everyone and her bouncing baby is coming out with funny, lyrical, beautiful and otherwise excellent recaps of our weekend at the Blogher09 Conference in Chicago. I too will be releasing one of those stink bombs fragrant flowers of prose either today or tomorrow, but first let me say this:

The worst place to be in the Chicago O'Hare Airport is wherever you're standing.

I mean it. Arrivals, departures, check-in, security, the bend in the hallway that passes for a Quizno's, wherever. That place was built with a ferocious but inhuman disregard for the convenience and enjoyment of people, as if the Airport Authority had outsourced the design to a team of ravenous wolves and gas giant aliens. You could flood the departure concourse and I'd at least eke some distraction out of drowning.

Coincidentally, the worst airline to fly in the US, as far as I can tell, is United. Combine an international United Flight with the slaughterhouse chic of O'Hare, and you have a monstrous shitball of a time, a dark globe of pure experiential feces whose circumference is nowhere and whose centre is right up against your nose. I now know United's real slogan: You'll Fly With Us Because That's Where You Need to Go, Sucker.

Thanks for the check-in machine that shut down in mid-process. Thanks for charging me for every piece of our checked baggage. Thanks for not telling me beforehand that you're too cheap to haul our bags. Thanks for the one poor woman trying to answer a million questions at once as each machine winked in and out of service at random. Thanks for the lack of proper instructions. Thanks for the expressions on the faces of staff who know that they're next in line to be replaced by a chunk of crap technology. Thanks for having departure times that are more like best guesses. Thanks for the confused lines, the ancient plane with seats covered in almost brittle vinyl, the three-hour flight with no food. Which reminds me, the flight was delayed because the galley was being stocked. Stocked with what? Packets of non-dairy creamer? That stuff sucked. Thanks.

8 comments:

ChurchPunkMom said...

I think we should have BlogHer in Canada sometime soon... I'd totally go to Canada!

Amy@Bitchin'WivesClub said...

I would have to agree with all that you said about O'Hare. And I will be there on the 16th, flying United to the UK, with three children and a babysitter in tow, untold amounts of luggage and, I'd warrant, a headache the size of Cook County.

It was really excellent meeting you and Schmutzie at BlogHer, you guys are awesome. :)

Kim said...

It's as if you heard my story of trying to get TO BlogHer. (Doubt I will be flying American Airlines again, thankyouverymuch.) I flew United out of OHare and it was nice by comparison to my hell ride on American. Or wait - I never did fly American, because they cancelled both...

Hello - I was one of the ladies sitting in front of you at the storytelling panel. My heart was aflutter contemplating your insults of the elements. I believe the last official note of the conference I took was, "It can't just be 'screw you cesium, screw you carbon.'"

palinode said...

churchpunkmom - A Canadian BlogHer would be kind of cool. It would still be at least 1000 miles from where I live, but what the hell.

Amy - It was excellent meeting you too. Good luck in the UK.

Kim - I remember Megan (acorndreaming) right in front of me during that panel - were you seated next to her? And I stand by that assessment of quality storytelling - it must be more than saying 'screw you, cesium'. Even though cesium just sucks.

Lynette said...

It seems like every airport has their own particular brand of suckage...I love to travel, I HATE to leave out of LAX.

palinode said...

I went through LAX a while back on my way to Australia. The main thing I remember is that no one seemed to be able to direct me to the correct terminal. That and the solicitors, some of whom made the saddest attempts at conversation ever.

Karl said...

Damn, dude, you rock. Hard. Loved hanging with you and Schmutzie last weekend. And you totally made my Top Ten Favorite Moments at BlogHer 2009 list.

I look forward to getting together again.

http://secondhandkarl.com/2009/07/paula-deen-bought-me-freaking-drinks-yawll-bitches/

blackbird said...

Have a seat. Let me tell you about my time in PITTSBURGH.