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  • February 27, 2009

    The post no one wants to read, and every flyer must

    Filed under: Did You Know,Passengers,safety,Tips — anne @ 2:21 pm
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    We’ve all seen those cheery posts – “Top Ten Tips 4 Not Croaking in a Crash” – or something like that.

    But here’s the real deal: a nuanced, practical guide to surviving a plane crash – written by an intelligent and imaginative reporter named Tim Jepson of Canada’s Daily Telegraph. Don’t do anything else today, until you read this. Really. It could save your life.

    Among Jepson’s findings:

    • Protect your legs: a lot of people die in crashes simply because their legs or ankles have been broken and they cannot get out of the plane. DO THIS: “Hold your legs and/or place feet flat on the floor, preferably farther back than your knees, and place hand luggage under the seat in front of you to act as a cushion.”
    • Brace yourself carefully: but that’s very tricky in coach – sometimes there’s just not enough room to do what the flight attendants say. DO THIS: “Get your torso as low as possible to reduce the jackknife effect at impact.”
    • Avoid smoke: fire and smoke are deadly, and you’ve got to cover your nose and mouth with something wet. DO THIS: Use a handkerchief or rip up some of your clothing for a cloth – and “if no water is available, use urine. This is a matter of life and death – it’s no time to be fastidious.”
    • Move: typically, you have 2 minutes or less to get out of a crashed plane alive – but something called “negative panic” may affect you, causing you to sit and wait for orders. DO THIS: Move – force yourself to move, and order those around you to do the same.

    There is so much more, so –read it. I’m sure you will never use any of this information. But I’m sure no one ever expected to be standing on the wings of a plane in the Hudson, either…

    February 26, 2009

    Dudes: Ride Pow & Sleep in Inflatable-Hood Jacket (good for planes!)

    Filed under: Airplane,Gadgets,Sleep — anne @ 8:39 am
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    I got all excited when I saw this jacket at left – featured on Gizmodo.

    You self-inflate the hood, and – wham! — instant pillow. Sweet.

    Unfortunately, actually buying the thing seems somewhat problematic – no prices, sizes, etc. on the designer’s site.

    Also problematic – the name of the jacket — the aforementioned designer calls it, “Never Stop a Rolling Stone”. Let’s see – Mick Jagger – inflatable hood – no, I’m not quite getting it.

    No matter -you can’t buy it. But hold on – Burton has a jacket with an inflatable neck! I’m told it’s good.

    February 25, 2009

    Hudson Hero: Pilots are Not Rich Guys

    Filed under: Frustration,Pilots — anne @ 2:36 pm
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    Some surprising — dare I say, distressing? –comments from Capt. Chesley Sullenberger of Hero-on-the-Hudson fame.

    He suggests – well, pretty much says – that airline pilots are poorly paid – or at least not paid anything like they used to be.

    Now before you start getting all snarky on me, how would you feel about seeing your pay cut almost in half over the past seven or eight years?

    Click on brother-blog RickSeaney’s take on it here – it has lots of surprising stuff on pilot pay. Really.

    BTW — just what DO you guys make, anyway?

    February 23, 2009

    Drunk on Plane May Be Late to Grandma’s Funeral

    Filed under: Arrested,Drunk — anne @ 11:08 am
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    So, it’s 10am, and this guy’s on his way to his grandmother’s funeral.

    What to do? Get drunk, of course!

    Then – get arrested. Yes, this is a familiar story to the stalwart readers of StandardUprightPosition. And now, you can also read all about this latest incident on our brother-blog,

    Rick’s got more details – plus, he wants to know if airlines should stop selling booze altogether. Oh, the horror!

    February 20, 2009

    As if Vegas Didn’t Have Enough Problems…

    Filed under: Uncategorized — mike @ 1:45 pm
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    Vegas’ convention business is, ah, in the commode these days. And now, there’s new trouble in Sin City.

    It seems Nevada’s gambling chieftains are warning casinos that there’s a card-counting app that works on the iPhone – which face it, could be a boon to blackjack players.

    Understand, card counting is not illegal in Las Vegas – but as the Associated Press reports, it is considered a felony to use any sort of device to help you count – with the exception of your fingers (and toes) I suppose.

    Personally, I couldn’t count my way out of a paper bag. But if this does work, what – will casinos start confiscating phones? Good question…

    Check out US Airways Cuts Flights: More Problems for Las Vegas Tourism for more on Sin City’s woes.

    February 17, 2009

    Another Airline Crew Busted Smuggling Cocaine

    Filed under: Arrested,Drugs,Flight Attendant — mike @ 1:52 pm
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    South African Airways isn’t having the best few weeks. It seems they just can’t keep their crews from engaging in a bit of drug trafficking.

    On January 21, a 15-member South African Airways flight crew was caught with cocaine and cannabis in their luggage worth about 310,000 GBP (about $442,168). Now, just this week, another crew from the airline was caught at Heathrow with 5kg of cocaine in their bags worth 250,000 GBP (about $356,597).

    We’ll keep you updated on the latest crew to get caught in the act. In the meantime, why not get caught up on some other “out there” flight crew stories.

    February 16, 2009

    VIDEO: Do You Like Screaming? Really LOUD Screaming?

    Filed under: Frustration,Passengers,Weird — anne @ 12:11 pm
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    UPDATE: The airline tries to make nice!

    Saw this on gadling, and my ears are still ringing.

    A woman at the Hong Kong airport was late for her Cathay Pacific flight to San Francisco earlier this month, and the plane took off without her. And she goes bonkers.

    No, on second thought, “bonkers” doesn’t quite capture it — doesn’t quite do this angry soliloquy justice, so – you’ll just have to see for yourself.

    I’ve missed planes before – and suffered in silence. It’s the Stoic in me. This woman has no such inhibitions. None whatsoever.

    February 12, 2009

    Happy Birthday, Abe

    Filed under: Holiday Travel,Rememberance — anne @ 8:51 am
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    No, you never got on a plane. Never got a chance to fly.

    But you soared.

    February 11, 2009

    Don’t Go There: America’s Most Miserable Cities (Blame

    Filed under: Destinations,Top Ten — anne @ 11:47 am
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    My goodness. has just made a lot of enemies.

    But I suppose you wouldn’t be real happy with them, if you made their list of America’s Most Miserable Cities. I’m sure it’s nothing personal though – they just wanted to come up with a snappy list because they know that’s all anyone on the web wants to read anymore.

    So who’s number one? Stockton, California (“Only 15% of Stockton adults have a college degree”). For what it’s worth, I like Stockton – it’s home to the delightful Asparagus Festival.

    Number two? Memphis, Tennessee (“Incredibly high rate of violent crimes”). C’mon, FedEx is there, how bad could it be?

    Number three? Chicago (“Lousy weather, long commutes, rising unemployment and the highest sales tax rate in the country”). Ouch, but hey – they’re also home to America’s Team.

    See the complete list here.

    February 10, 2009

    The Ideal Valentine Date – oh, my

    Filed under: Food,Holiday Travel,Romance,Sex — anne @ 10:16 am
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    A travel site called GeckoGo has done a survey about travel and Valentine’s Day and hooking up.

    And here’s what we’ve learned:

    1. The ideal Valentine’s Day date is a weekend getaway
    2. Least popular date is a home-cooked meal
    3. 51% of travelers have “hooked up” while traveling

    I can just picture this coming Saturday now – there I’ll be: home, unhooked, and making meatloaf. Hmmm.

    February 6, 2009

    Ally of Blagojevich Allegedly Ripped Off Airlines

    Filed under: Arrested,Chicago,Crime — anne @ 11:49 am
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    Like the airlines don’t have it tough enough these days…

    According to the Chicago Tribune, a former fundraiser for ex-Gov. Rod Blagojevich is accused of working some sort of scheme to rip off United and American Airlines.

    The scheme? Well, it had to do with roofing work at O’Hare. Clearly, not all “schemes” are sexy.

    Supposedly it involved inflating the price of the roofing work and some of that money was allegedly siphoned off for gambling debts. Okay, that sounds a little more nefarious.

    And the airlines may have overspent to the tune of millions. That must be some roof they have.

    February 4, 2009

    50-Years Ago: The Day the Music Died

    Filed under: Airplane,List,Music,News — anne @ 1:12 pm
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    Actually, it was 50-years ago yesterday since the plane crash that killed Buddy Holly, 22, the Big Bopper, 28, and Richie Valens, 17 (plus the poor pilot who nobody remembers – for the record, he was 21 year old Roger Peterson).

    All of which was memorialized by Don McLean in “American Pie”.

    Which reminds me: Blender magazine has a list of the 10 worst rock & roll plane crashes – see it here.

    Such a waste – or, as Blender put it: “What is it about famous musicians that makes them believe it’d be a swell idea to charter a small, unreliable aircraft through inclement weather?

    I dunno, but we still miss you, Buddy. All you guys.

    February 2, 2009

    Cheap Hotel Deals in New York City for Frisky Valentine’s Day

    Filed under: Holiday Travel,Hotels,Romance — anne @ 3:35 pm
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    The Daily News has put together a handy list of Valentine Weekend package deals at a number of Manhattan hotels, and we liked this one:

    “The Marmara Manhattan’s Valentine’s Weekend package includes two nights’ accommodation in a one-bedroom suite, a dozen roses – plus rose petals on the bed – Champagne, chocolate-covered Turkish-delight candies and a Kama Sutra kit for adventurous couples looking to indulge their sensuous side. Priced at $699.”

    Turkish-delight? Anyway, yeah, it’s a little expensive, but hey – we’re talking New York City here. If you want rock bottom prices, you may have to share your space with rodents (see “Worst Hotel“).

    That said, there are cheaper hotel deals on the list – just click here to see them all.

    And if Florida is your idea of romance (sensuous oranges?), click here for great deals.