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United I Stand, Qantas I’m Full

Dear United Airlines,

I’m a big fan. I love having 1K status (even though I don’t understand how “1K” represents 100,000 miles flown). I’m grateful that I can board early so my carry-on bags have a home in the overhead bin and not under the seat in front of me where the feet on the other end of my long legs should reside. I really appreciate it when you upgrade me to First Class so that I can gloat when the coach passengers walk by as I sip my free pre-flight cran-apple juice. I also love the warm cinnamon scones on the short flights when there is not enough time to serve us real food in First Class. Finally, I thank you for the thirty free beverage tickets you sent me when I made 1K. I don’t drink alcohol so I used them to make a nifty collage to remind me of your generosity.


Qantas BreakfastToday I took a one-hour flight on Qantas from Sydney to Brisbane and look what they gave me.

Did I mention that the flight was only 1 hour? Or that I was in coach? Or that sometimes your crew can’t get the beverage cart down the entire aisle and back on a one-hour flight?

It may be hard to decipher what I ate since all that’s left in the photo are empty containers, so let me itemize it for  you.

First, I got muesli.  I have no idea what muesli is but it sure was tasty – and it did wonders for my colon (not that this is an area of priority for an air transportation company, I’m just saying it was an added bonus).

And to accompany my muesli, I got my own container of milk. I could pour it on the muesli, add it to my coffee, or drink it straight out of the bottle. I didn’t have to ask for it or explain that yes, I do want milk in my coffee, for the third time, to a flight attendant who doesn’t seem to want to do any extra work on the beverage cart.

And what was right next to the milk? Why, it was a container of orange juice. Two drinks. Bam. I didn’t even have to ask. I could have mixed my milk with my orange juice should I have been compelled to do so. Not that I did. Well just a little.

Then, I found a wrapped hidden treasure that turned out to be a very tasty bran muffin. Clearly, when Qantas Airlines says, “You’re” the reason they fly, they mean “your colon.”

After serving breakfast, the flight attendants hustled back down the aisles with coffee and tea. That’s three drinks if you’re keeping score. And there was none of this “it’s brewing” crap when someone orders tea. They had plenty-o-caffeine to go around. And we drank from a plastic mug, not a styrofoam cup. It wasn’t Tiffany’s but it was a nice touch.

I know what you’re thinking. Well, that’s just too much food for anyone to eat. But that wasn’t all. There was a bowl of apples on the food cart and I could have had one of those too. But, after the muesli and the muffin, I didn’t want to risk a digestive issue on our final descent. So, I passed on the apple, so to speak.

United, I don’t expect you to change the way you do things. I’m sure there is a very good reason why you starve the passengers in steerage and scowl when they want the whole can of soda. But perhaps there’s a compromise. Maybe you could offer us a few handfuls of muesli with our styrofoam coffee. It would be a nice gesture and you’d have a lot more happy passengers. And by “passengers,” of course I mean, “colons.”

Thank you for your consideration.


Ron Culberson
1K Passenger and Big Fan

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