The Common Sense Problem

The airplane seat map shows that the emergency exit row seats are considered “less desirable.” It’s a little ironic since they come with extra leg room, even if they don’t recline (really, who needs to recline 2 inches when you have two extra feet of leg room?). I think the real reason they are less desirable is because you need to put up with the irritating, non-sensical “rules” imposed by passive-aggressive flight attendants.

I just finished a flight where I was sitting in one of these rows. I opted to bring a crochet project with me into my seat. This project consists of a small canvas bag with 3 small skeins of yarn and a blanket square measuring less than a foot in length. Do you see it there, in that picture? That little white and blue canvas bag stuffed amongst my carry on luggage and safely stowed? Why is it safely stowed, you ask? What a great question!

Apparently, since it is a “bag,” it must be safely stowed. And there cannot be any loose articles AT ALL in the emergency exit rows – which means I also cannot keep the bag stowed under the seat in front of me and stretch the yard out to my seat because it creates a safety hazard. So the very friendly flight attendant stooped above me patiently as I tried not to roll my eyes while simultaneously stowing my safety hazard.

Perhaps I would have been less appalled by this stupidity if the other people in my row were also expected to stow away their loose articles (which happened to not be in bags). The person immediately beside me enjoyed taxi, take-off, and landing by playing games on his rather large “handheld device” (because a large iPad with an attached keyboard is not actually a loose object that poses a safety hazard). The person sitting beside him, on the isle, continued to read his fairly thick novel for the entirety of the flight (because again, a large hardcover book with point corners does not pose any kind of hazard).

The logic here is really lost on me… how a small, soft canvas bag carrying less 8oz of yarn poses more of a safety hazard in my lap, in the emergency exit row, than both a large iPad and a hardcover book is completely non-sensical. In fact, it goes against all common sense.

However, the rules are the rules, right? “Small handheld” devices are allowed to be used during all parts of the flight. Everything else has to be stowed. So be it.

I’m interested to see how they expect me to stow my 17 month old lap-toddler on my flight to Orlando this weekend… oh wait… that’s not against the rules, is it?

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