I love flying. I get nervous sometimes when there’s bad turbulence or a shaky landing, but overall I enjoy the experience of getting to the airport, eating at a restaurant or buying a magazine, and cramming into a seat that doesn’t fit me because all the exit row seats are taken by people shorter than 6’0″. What I DON’T enjoy, however, is the safety speech/demonstration that occurs every time I fly.
First of all, no one pays attention to what the flight attendant is saying. I’ve told myself in the past that I would read through the pamphlet in the exit row to actually understand what to do in case of an emergency, but it’s hard to do. Let’s be honest…do any of us really know the protocol? For all I know, all of you do, and I’m making a fool of myself. But I have a hunch that not many of us do.
So why don’t we know this protocol? Simple: there are no consequences. You can still fly if you don’t know how to fly. This is unlike driving, where you need to take an educational class and have time behind the wheel before you can hit the road.
Now, I know what you’re thinking. “Mike, you don’t actually FLY the plane…so why do you need to take Flyer’s Ed? You don’t need to take Driver’s Ed when you’re just sitting in a seat as a passenger, either.” Well, I agree. Whole-heartedly. You don’t really need a class on how to be a passenger on an airplane. But if we DID have one, we could get rid of the flight attendant having to demonstrate it every single time we fly. That would save him/her time & our sanity.
Finally, having this class would actually make people know what to do in case of an emergency. If they took a simple day-long course and had to pass an exam later that day or the next morning in order to fly, I’m willing to bet they would pay attention!
I’m sure there would be a huge public outcry saying that this is unnecessary. But just envision this. You have a 6am flight back to Harrisburg, heading back to Bucknell after Spring Break. You’re tired from the sun, you’re hungover, and you don’t even want to think about school. Wouldn’t it be nice to hop on that plane, and have them just turn the lights off right away, without a peep from a flight attendant, so you could sleep and get the flight over with? I’d sure like that. 🙂