I was going to write something along the lines of "First they came for the smokers, and I did nothing. Then they came for the drinkers, and I did nothing. Then they came for the lard arses...." but that would have been a little bit too obvious.
So I got to thinking. Who else deserves to get hit for an airliner tax? Right...
- Letting your kids kick the back of my seat? That's going to cost you. And forgive me if I don't raise the tax level a little if they take to screaming the place down while you sit there with your headphones on, blissfully unaware.
- Reclining your seatback in front of me while I'm struggling through my Chicken á la Plastique. That'll do nicely. It's hard enough to eat this crap, what with my elbows pinned to my sides, without having to balance it on what appears to be a ski slope.
- Sitting next to me on a seven-hour flight after having eaten the EU garlic mountain. What an interesting odour, sir! No, I'm really interested in knowing what you had for dinner last night.
- Taking a window seat on a daytime flight and then pulling down the blind. That's taking the piss. If I have a choice between watching Mr. Bean for the 'nth' time or idly gazing at the scarily wobbling engine mounts on the wing, it's a good view of Mr Boeing's finest for me. And you're denying me that simple pleasure.
- Getting up twelve times to put stuff in the locker, get stuff out of the locker, put stuff in the locker, etc, etc. No, not annoying at all - why don't you see if you can get something to fall out of it onto me? Lovely.
- Actually, those people who cram the locker with several thousand duty-free B&H and a litre of Canadian Club, leaving no-one any room for their carry-on bag - never mind a surcharge, we should make you lot sit on the wing.
- Whilst we're on the subject, what about those people who find it necessary to stand up and get their stuff ready - seconds after the tyres hit the tarmac at the other end? You know you won't get there any more quickly, don't you? Are these the sorts of people who buy houses next to the cemetery, just to save time later?
- Those of you wearing beachwear when we're flying back from some Mediterranean summer holiday, when we all know it's cloudy and three degrees above freezing back home. Actually, no I'll let you have that one for sheer entertainment value.
- The delightful lady who sat next to us once, and then proceeded to enthusiastically and noisily empty her nostrils. For three thousand miles.
We could argue that it's partly my fault, but I'm sorry, I'm already being taxed for being fat. For him we must create a whole new tax bracket. He may as well have a few pies while he's at it.