The 10 tech things… you only do at 33,000 feet

Australian T3 - - SHUTDOWN -

1/ Spend the cost of your flight on un­nec­es­sary tech tat

Whether it’s the al­ti­tude de­priv­ing your brain of air or a symp­tom of pure, sense-numb­ing bore­dom, you splash your hol­i­day money on a Ro­tary watch, a com­puter mouse in the shape of a car, a minia­ture model of the air­craft and a uni­ver­sal travel adap­tor. Then leave the lat­ter in the cab en-route to the ho­tel.

2/ Fear your smart­phone

You know that noth­ing bad will hap­pen if you don’t put it into Air­plane Mode, they proved it on Myth­busters. How­ever, willed on by the overly earnest cabin crew, it’s hard not to fret that a sly bout of New Star Soc­cer dur­ing take-off is the equiv­a­lent of pulling a pin from a live grenade. Doesn’t stop you do­ing it, though, does it?

3/ Over­es­ti­mate the length of block­busters

“If I watch three movies with a cou­ple of meals and toi­let breaks, plus a hand­ful of re­ally old Simpsons episodes, that should keep me oc­cu­pied all the way to Paris.” Not quite. It turns out the aver­age film isn’t eight hours long and, af­ter a third con­sec­u­tive view­ing of We’re The Millers, you’ve de­vel­oped se­vere bed sores and just passed Cairns.

4/ Avoid work­ing at all costs

up­date those im­por­tant spread­sheets or crack on with the novel? Never go­ing to hap­pen. “I’ll just have a mini bot­tle of red and get down to busi­ness,” swiftly turns into, “I’ll just have four red wines and watch Game of Thrones for nine hours… with breaks ev­ery five min­utes to check if the lit­tle GPS plane an­i­ma­tion has made any progress”; it hasn’t.

5/ Put your iPod on shuf­fle

You made a pre­ten­tious playlist full of hot new acts sug­gested by cooler friends. Un­for­tu­nately, you hate all of them. Time to be­gin man­i­cally flick­ing through the songs on your most­played lists – all bought decades ago, of course – search­ing des­per­ately for some­thing that will hold your in­ter­est be­yond the first cho­rus, be­fore get­ting a bit teary lis­ten­ing to Three Lions five times in a row. Prob­a­bly shouldn’t have had that fifth wine, eh?

6/ Lis­ten to a med­i­ta­tion chan­nel

ap­pear to be play­ing Rock­star by Nick­el­back, you even­tu­ally land at the sanc­tu­ary of chan­nel 12, home of the sooth­ing sound of waves lap­ping against the shore and a man with a deep voice telling you to breathe. Much like what you might hear if the plane had to crash land in wa­ter. Just jok­ing – if that hap­pened you’d, of course, die on im­pact. “And re­lax…”

7/ Fall asleep with ear­phones in

One side of your ear­bud-filled head has been pressed against a head­rest that’s as hard as a stale scone, caus­ing you to wake up feel­ing like some­one’s been slowly push­ing their thumb into the left-hand side of your brain, whilst pip­ing in med­i­ta­tion noises for three hours. Ex­ter­nal symp­toms? One alarm­ingly swollen, beet­root-coloured ear.

8/ Check your face us­ing Go­rilla Glass

You’re not vain, you just want to make sure you don’t ac­tu­ally look like the pale al­co­holic ghost with spots, vis­i­ble even though they’re cov­ered with beard, that all plane toi­let mir­rors would have you be­lieve. Nope, you look fine. Thanks, Plane.

9/ Take the worst video ever

Yes, the one of fluffy clouds shot through a con­den­sa­tion cov­ered plane win­dow. The world def­i­nitely needs an­other one of those.

10/ Lower your tech stan­dards

As a min­i­mal­ism mas­ter, you de­cided to travel light and leave your gad­gets at home? Well, planes are me­dia plea­sure­domes nowa­days, right? Af­ter play­ing the long­est, lag­gi­est game of Tetris on what ap­pears to be the orig­i­nal Soviet source code, whilst feign­ing amaze­ment when spo­radic news up­dates per­me­ate the Wi-Fi-less clouds, you con­clude that they are not. Now, where’s that in-flight cat­a­logue…?

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