I love a goody bag as much as the next cheap person who loves freebies, but we've gone too far. There's a new trend developing where parents give gift bags to airplane passengers for a baby's first plane ride. At first, I thought, "Oh, this is cute," then I realized, "No... no, it's not cute at all."
IT IS ABSURD!!!
Why are parents apologizing for a baby? NEWSFLASH: Babies cry. This is normal baby behavior. Throw in ear popping, hundreds of strangers, an uncomfortable environment and recycled air, and that makes me want to cry sometimes, too.
Airplane goody bags are basically a preemptive measure to thank people for not being jackasses. Parents feel bad enough, trying to console a child in a basically inconsolable situation.
You think passengers' over-the-top sighs, angry side eyes and grumbles help Mommy and Daddy diffuse the situation?
What happened to humanity and kindness? How about offering the frazzled parents an understanding smile, a reassuring word or a vodka tonic from the flight attendant?
While a gift bag is a kind gesture by the parents, it underscores how ridiculous the world we live in is that people feel inclined to apologize for kids being kids.
Parents who fly with young babies, I salute you. You don't need to apologize. Your child is having a natural reaction to an unsettling situation.
Moms and pops, save the goody bag money and buy baby Benadryl instead. Here are six people who need to hand out airplane goody bags way more than you:
1. Armrest thief
Spending a three-hour flight trying to win back my right to rest my elbow is draining. Unless we're going to arm wrestle, let's come up with shared custody agreement of the arm rest or give me a gift bag with a neck pillow, sling and Kit Kat for the trouble.
2. Ants in the pants passenger
If you get out of your seat more than twice during a flight, you are ten times worse than a crying baby. Just when I fall asleep or find the right upright position that makes me comfortable, you decide you need to retrieve your reading glasses from the overhead bin. AGAIN.
Gift bag of Advil, Dramamine and bubble gum, please.
3. Bathroom breaker
Having only a couple restrooms for a plane full of people is no fun. I realize some of us handle airline peanuts and turbulence better than others, but if you're the one to stink up the jetliner powder room, how about a gift bag of Febreze, nose plugs, medical mask and Parisian eau de toilette to mask the odor?
4. Chair kicker
If you're old enough to know right from wrong, the constant back banging is annoying. In addition to an unwarranted "foot massage," those who put the tray table up and down multiple times or use my seat back to stand up and accidentally pull my hair, I'm talking to you, too.
5. The talker
Forget earplugs for a crying baby. I need earplugs and Tylenol to deal with the lady heading to visit Aunt Sally for the first time since her cousin Barbara went through a divorce from Uncle Billy after cheating with the Walmart cashier. No, I don't need to know your after-flight itinerary, family gossip or life story.
6. The drunk
Maybe you're anxious about flying, visiting relatives or just an alcoholic; regardless, being stuck on a plane with the guy who can't handle liquor is about as much fun as gardening with the schoolyard bully.
Forget the goody bag, can we all just vote him off the island via the closest emergency exit?
So again, parents, please don't feel guilty about flying with your youngster. Those who don't understand your situation or can't empathize with a young baby aren't worth the worry.
If there's a complaint about an airline passenger, it's the six above-mentioned violators I'm more concerned about.
Let's restore the friendly skies for little ones and save the eye rolls for these offenders.