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cultural vandal | by maryann johanson

your in-flight movie today is… nothing

They really are trying to take all the fun out of traveling, aren’t they:

US Airways (LCC, Fortune 500) says it will start removing in-flight entertainment systems on domestic flights in November to save about $10 million annually in fuel and other costs….

US Airways says it will test a lighter, seat-back TV system later this year. However, Gee says a new entertainment system is a long way off.

I remember the first time I flew on a plane with seatback TVs: it was Virgin Atlantic, and the year, kiddies, was 1994. I thought I’d died and gone to heaven, and I spent pretty much the whole transatlantic flight watching Mr. Bean.

My last flight, the horrific return from Paris in the spring, was on an old plane that didn’t have seatback TVs, just one projection TV for the cabin showing Bollywood musicals (it was Air India), and I thought that was torture: even as a poor, starving writer, not a regular world traveler, I thought that was barbaric. But it looks like someday, I’ll be telling my nonexistent grandchildren about the good old days when Bollywood movies for the whole cabin was a luxury beyond compare.

Looks like I’ll have to revise the definition of civilization downward.

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