Flight attendant rumors: What your oversize carry-on costs her (or him)

Let’s say you’ve opted to carry on your luggage, the very luggage that is a wee too big to fit in the carry-on size box at check-in. You saw the box, but you really didn’t look at it that closely because it seemed your bag would fit–it should fit, and who really checks anyway?
As it turns out, FAA does check such things. At least, from what I’ve heard from a very reliable source, they’re starting to now. If you bag is too big for the bin, but makes it onto the airplane, the flight attendant who let you squeak by, can get fined for being generous.
The flight attendant can also get fined if she or he lets you:
  • Use your electronic device when you’re not supposed to
  • Get out of your seat when the seat belt sign is on, no matter how badly you have to GO.

This very reliable source personally knows a flight attendant who was recently fined almost $2,000 for such infractions.

Rumor has it that this enforcing rules business has pepped up recently as FAA staff hop on flights, thumbing through rule books, and keeping a watchful eye up and down the aisles to find out if flight attendants are doing what they’re supposed to be doing. No, it’s not that flight attendants are supposed to make us–the passengers–miserable, they’re supposed to keep us safe. Haven’t you been reading Galley Gossip?

Unfortunately, what I see happening is that flight attendants are being put in the middle of airline regulations, especially the one about carry-on size since some airlines have shrunk the allowable carry-on size in order to get people to check bags so they can collect the checked bag fee. This means the flight attendant and passenger relationship may feel more adversarial.

If you are going to try to sneak that bag on, or get out of your seat to go, just keep in mind that your actions may cost money to that flight attendant who smiled and said “Hi” when you got on board.

Also, because of FAA’s pepped up vigilance that flight attendant is going to be watching you more carefully. Watched people watch other people. That bag may not make it on after all. And remember to visit the women’s or men’s room before you get on the plane. And when it’s time to turn off that electronic device, don’t plead just one more minute.

According to Conway L, who posted this picture, the bomb decal on his bag didn’t create a stir. If the bag was a bicycle, that might have been another story.

Santa Monica police are cracking down on sit-ups in public places

If you have a hankering to start doing sit-ups in Santa Monica, California in a public place, think again. It doesn’t matter if you grunt when you do a sit-up, or rise smoothly with the greatest of ease. There is a ban on such behavior.

Not all public places are affected by the ban on public displays of Pilate’s-like exercises, however. It’s also not for all types of exercise. If you are jogging, running, pushing a stroller or hopping forward on one foot (I added the last one), you are free to get fit.

The ban is only for staying in one place exercises–and only on grassy meridians medians. Being that folks in Santa Monica are such exercise hounds, residents who live around traffic meridians where these calisthenic lovers congregate finally became sick and tired of the commotion and complained.

People who exercise on meridians are not all that quiet –and they litter. Recently, police officers have been stopping people who crouch down for a squat thrust or even a calf stretch. Pick up a barbell and you’re in trouble. If the person who is exercising doesn’t amble away quietly, he or she could be fined up to $158. Of course, considering that Santa Monica is filled with gobs of beautiful people some homeowners who live around the meridians have not minded watching the exercisers one bit and are feeling some disappointment that their early morning entertainment has dwindled.

Because of the meridian exercise ban, people have been using the sides of the streets for their stretching routines. Be on the lookout if you’re driving in a vicinity of a meridian. It would be horrible to hit someone. You might find the most people near the corner of Fourth Street and Adelaide Drive. That’s where the most problematic meridian is located according to this article in The New York Times. That’s where I read about the ban.

There is a court date in January to determine if the ban is legal. The photo was taken at Waikiki Beach, Hawaii where you can do sit ups until the cows come home if you want to.

Be Respectful or Face a Fine in Venice

A while back, I wrote about vendors in Venice jacking up the price of goods for rude tourists. Now it appears as if the people of Venice are taking it a step further and implementing fines for tourists who don’t respect the rules of the city. And these fines can range from 25 to 500 euros — ouch! The city is being patrolled by t-shirted stewards who will alert police if the rules are broken. So far, 100 tourists have been fined.

Punishable crimes include laying out food, walking about bare-chested or treating the Grand Canal like a beach, and implementing fines is the city’s effort to uphold its image as a mecca of fine art and sophistication. Still, I don’t see what’s wrong with having an innocent picnic every now and then …