Sunday, October 03, 2010

Southwest, Movie Review

The first time I flew on Southwest Airlines they had three airplanes and the flight attendants wore shorts so short and tight you wondered how they got them on and off. The pilots wore black leather jackets with a little facial hair and looked like they had just climbed off of a big black noisy Hog. The attendants were all cheerleader good looking and led Dallas Cowboy cheers before take off and immediately when the wheels hit the ground. On one trip they were doing the infamous 20 minute turn around that made them completely different from the other airlines. They could land the plane, herd the passengers off, tidy up the plane, herd new passengers on the plane, leave the gate and take off within 20 minutes. It contrast it takes American 20 minutes to just open the front door, another 20 minutes to allow you to stand up and another 20 minutes to get you on the walkway. On one of my early trips on Southwest we pulled into Houston Hobby airport, open the doors, herded the passenger off the plane, herded the new group onto the plane, backed the plane onto the run way, and oooops the plane made a u-turn back into the gate with no announcement as to what was going on. After opening the doors 4 passengers left the plane, the doors shut and then we proceeded to get the flight on the way. After reaching cruising altitude the captain came on the intercom thanking us for our patience(I love it when they do that since you really have no other choice at 30,000 feet) and that in their quest to make the 20 minute turn around they actually boarded too many passengers and had to return them to the gate. There sense of urgency got the best of them that day, and as I have watched them grow to hundreds of airplanes in their fleet I am amazed as to how they have maintained this continuity of great service and great prices. But on the other hand Southwest Airlines has completely spoiled the traveling public with low prices, great service, both on the ground and in the skies. They continue to set the pace for the airline industry and do it with a sense of humor, and great looking flight attendants. So, when you have to fly the other airlines it is really a bummer, even if the flights are free as a result of mileage points are for any other reason. Today I am flying back to Lubbock from Birmingham on American Airlines and I am longing for the comforts of the 737 Southwest jets. But more than anything I am missing the convenience they offer in flight availability in and out of Lubbock and the pricing structure that is still very good. When we checked into the counter to fly out the first thing we had to pay for was our bags, exactly $25.00 extra. What a rip off, while on Southwest there is no extra charge. When you travel it is customary to take your luggage as part of the trip. So, they gotcha coming and going on American. The tickets prices are twice as much, unless you are traveling on free tickets from mileage like we are today, and the service is questionable. Then to put a crowning blow and the prime example of not caring about the customer we landed in Dallas with a 3 hours lay over for our scheduled flight but noticed that there was a much earlier flight to Lubbock. While this flight was not available when the original reservations were made not only is it available but it will get us into Lubbock 3 hours earlier. Now for the rest of the story. We walk up to the gate counter and ask if they have two seats on this flight to Lubbock, and the answer was yes. But, now the kicker, we were told that it would be another $100.00 for us to take these two seats even though they are sitting there empty and no one is taking them. Think of it, these two lonely seats are now flying back to Lubbock with no one in them and I am sitting here in DFW writing this blog emphasizing that service is dead in the big airlines and has been for quite some time, while on the other hand the breath of fresh air in air travel is Southwest. I’ll lead the next cheer on my Southwest Flight!!

Movie Review: “The Town”, ****, Think “Gangs of New York” and you will feel the brutality that goes on in this movie. Ben Affleck is the lead actor and also doubles as the director. This is his second outing in the director role and could be the heir apparent to Clint Eastwood. He does a great job in both roles and really keeps you on the edge of your seat with the story, action and great acting. Doug MacRay played by Affleck is the unrepentant leader of a small group of ruthless bank robbers who take what they want and never look back. Then ole kind hearted Doug falls for the former hostage of one of their Turns out this part of Boston is famous for bank robber crimes, while this is not a true story it does resemble real life crime in that city. The guys who play Affleck’s partners in crime are like back up singers, they are good but you really don’t recognize them for their past acting credits. Rated R for strong violence(under statement), pervasive language(under statement), some sexuality(soft porn), and drug use.

Good day to SH, thanks for reading!!



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