Flying has become akin to incarceration. Being barked upon by the correctional officer (check-in agent) when registering your property for alleged safe keeping, follwed by the once-over strip search before entering the sterile zone (sorry, security check). A final meal on the ground before sent into the prison van (aircraft, I've done it again).
As in the penitentiary, there are different grades of incarceration once in the air. There is the Club Feb prison farm euphemistically called FIrst Class. THen there is medium security for your more deserving felons, some of whom were rewarded for good behaviour. Maximum security is reserved for the Great Unwashed, or those too poor for decent legal representation (I meant to say travel agent). For solitary confinment, you'd have to fly Ryanair.
THe lifers (I meant to say members of frequent flyer programs) are so jaded by now that they will put up with just about anything except for solitary. Because even for them, there are human rights. In a normal Max-Security service (sorry, legacy carrier), stting in Y-Class has become akin to being a multi-occupancy cell. Hot-bedding. Crammed in, no idea who your seat/cell mate will be, and not sure if you'll simply serve your time once, since chances of parole (ie early arrival) are remote. But further incarceration due to factors beyond the inmate's (sorry pax) control is a distinct possibility.
So what is left for the inmate? Well, there used to be a meal to look forward to. Maybe a beverage (sorry, no booze), but in most cases, that's been cut. So now you have to rely on a ration pack the loved ones prepared for you - having been thoroughly screened by Prison Autorities (TSA
). The warders (sorry, FAs) pace the aisles sternly repimanding those whose loved ones prepare a too-good a meal. Warders will also lurk and scold those that have no business getting out of their confinement - apart from attending to their business.
In this prison (sorry, flight), exercise has been cancelled, now inmates are confined to their seats to do some exercises. Even reading is curtailed since Chief Warder (Purser) - she who has The Power, controls the power to the lights. Curtains must be closed when warders (FAs, sorry!) command.
When the inmate is discharged, there is no chance that the belongings he was stripped of upon incarceration (check-in, sorry), would be returned. So he has to deal with the Dept of Correctional Services (Airport to you and me, or BAA in UK, or Macquarie Airports Corporation in SYD
) to try to reclaim his goods& chattel.
And you have the hide to ask whether my fellow inmates are asking too much by having IFE??