Kruiser’s (Almost) Daily Distraction: I Think the FAA Just Fat-Shamed Me

News & Politics

(Kruiser’s Permanote Description: This column is intended to be a lighthearted, short-form way to frequently connect with our cherished VIP readers. Sometimes it will be serious. Sometimes it will be fun. Sometimes it will be a cornucopia of intellectual curiosities and fascinations. OK, maybe not so much the last one. Anyway, as this is a departure for me, I’m including this explanation at the top of each post for a while. Also, non-subscribers can see the first couple of paragraphs so I am in desperate need of filler until we get to the private stuff (subscribe here). Please remember that there is a standing invitation to ask me anything in the comments. Once a week, I’ll answer.)

Proof That the Feds Are Spying on Me

As I have mentioned here before, I may have put on a pound or twenty during the Wuhan Bat Flu Lockdown Siege. As I have also mentioned, I had no reason to, as my life really didn’t change much. In fact, I should have lost weight because I was unable to go out to some of my favorite bars and drink beer for several months.

via GIPHY

I’m on the path back to not being COVID bloated, but it’s a slow one. I’d just weighed myself yesterday and I wasn’t quite where I wanted to be on the journey. It’s been on my mind since then. While I don’t share news stories here much, I just happened upon one and the timing of it made me chuckle. The Federal Aviation Administration is revising its weight rules for airlines upward and, because I’m egocentric I immediately thought: “They’re on to me.”

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The Wall Street Journal:

Passengers keep getting bigger. Now airlines must account more accurately for that.

The Federal Aviation Administration is requiring updates to passenger and baggage weight estimates that airlines use to keep each flight within airplane safety limits. Each U.S. airline must submit a plan by June 12 explaining which average weights for passengers and baggage they’ll use, down to phones and clothing, and how they estimated those weights. The FAA must approve each airline’s plan.

Airline officials say the weight estimates used for passengers and baggage are going up between 5% and 10%. That will affect some flights, possibly requiring that more passengers get bumped or more baggage left behind. Impact is likelier on unusually hot days and in cities higher above sea level, when the weight an airplane can safely carry is reduced because wings won’t generate as much lift. Flights into stiff headwinds that require more fuel also may face more weight issues.

Ten percent sounds about right here. Those NSA satellites are better than I thought they were. They must be seeing me in the shower.

That thing about hot days is disturbing because I’m pretty sure that more fat people are flying during the summer.

I was doing a South Pacific stand-up tour (with our own Kevin Downey, Jr.) several years ago to entertain the troops and one night we had to fly from a small island to an even smaller island for a show. The prop plane looked like a leftover from a WWII movie. Before we boarded, they made each of us stand on a scale with our luggage. That seemed like a smart approach but we definitely don’t need to slow commercial air travel down any further.

One thing is certain: none of us is gaining any weight thanks to airline food. We’re maybe a year away from the flight attendants just opening one of those individual bags of pretzels, breaking up the contents, and handing each passenger a piece.

But hey, American Airlines, I get it: I’ll work out harder before my next flight. It’s not until July, so I’ve got time to drop a few pounds. Thanks for the incentive. The only thing worse than not being able to fit comfortably into an airplane seat is having a heart attack while trying to do so.

I’m so cheery.

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