A community of one hundred, crammed inside a metal tube. You know, a long distance flight.
No, I really don’t want to listen to that silly twit over there babble about his skateboarding adventure in Honolulu, nor to that child wail, uncontrollably, I don’t want your dog humping my leg, nor to have your graphically violent movie running in front of my face such that my only option is to see it, or put a kink in my neck staring the other direction.
So if I can’t take these things, I shouldn’t fly, for sure.
Of course on the bus ride down to Boston from Nashua, there are rules. Obnoxious and too loud talk does happen, but it depends on the driver, and it’s rare. The ride is relatively short.
I was thinking myself over the top hypersensitive or something, not wanting to have to listen to the conversation, ready to accept the idea that I have to accept it, or not fly, or ride the bus, or live in a community of one hundred.
But then it occurred to me, that perhaps for just those few hours, or many, it’s not all that many in quiet, at all, that everyone might consider the rights and likes and dislikes and perhaps desire to sleep or aversion to violence or whatever, consider the other’s wants and needs and likes and dislikes and be considerate.
Must you fly that child too young to understand, the infant who might potentially scream, non stop, for six hours, to wherever it is that you’re taking it? Is this not something that might wait? Do you really want to expose your infant to all of those antigens on that flight? Is your pet well enough behaved to sit through a flight, or might it piss on your neighbor’s leg? Do you really have to talk at top volume about yourself, non stop, for the next seven hours?
Perhaps a vote could be taken at the onset of each flight. Shall we have quiet? Are screaming children allowed on board, or potentially screaming children? How about the douchebag who won’t shut up, shall we serve him lots of drinks and make everyone else on board miserable?
Perhaps life on an airplane offers up a good model for cultural designers to follow. A number somewhere not much beyond a hundred is supposed to be the perfect community size, would it be possible to create blissful utopia on board flight 2463 using a randomly sampled population of humanity? Democratically?
A long distance, international flight would be best, one of those things that nine different airlines collaborate on. Segregation of passengers based on something other than wealth.