Absurdly Driven looks at the world of business with a skeptical eye and a firmly rooted tongue in cheek.
Please excuse any typos in this article, as I'm writing it prostrate.
I've been poleaxed, you see, by a revelation so extreme that it's the very definition of unbelievable.
For as long as I've been flying -- and it's a long time -- I've always been under the impression that First Class bathrooms are for the high-paying, or merely high-falutin', passengers only.
I've heard countless announcements warning passengers to stick to the toilet in their own class.
Yes, you might be seated in Economy Class nearer to the First Class bathroom than the Economy one, but don't even think of slipping up front for your ablutions.
Yet JT Genter, writing at the Points Guy, offers a startling apparition.
Seated in First Class, he observed several Economy Class passengers piercing the curtain and lining up for the snooty loos.
So he leaped to Twitter to ask American what on earth was going on.
He received this reply: "The First Class bathrooms can be used by everyone on the plane when you're flying domestically, but we agree they shouldn't be loitering."
The First Class bathrooms can be used by everyone on the plane when you're flying domestically, but we agree they shouldn't be loitering.-- American Airlines (@AmericanAir) May 30, 2018
Loitering is one of those lovely words that suggests someone's up to no good. But what these people are doing appears perfectly OK with American.
Genter says he contacted American's PR team, which confirmed that this is not only true of domestic flights, but applies to international flights leaving the U.S. too.
It's only on flights returning to the U.S. where the TSA requires passengers to use bathrooms in their ticketed cabin.
And this is where the phrase Who Knew? takes on a worrying air.
I fancy the majority of American Airlines passengers had no idea about this rule. I also fancy the majority of American Airlines employees are happy about that.
Which makes me very concerned.
First Class passengers can carry an entitled mien. I suspect more haven't complained about this remarkably relaxed rule because not too many people have known about it.
Now, however, please imagine the liberation felt by any number of American Airlines Economy Class passengers who will feel free to pee at the front of the plane.
I contacted American to ask whether it wasn't concerned that this sudden, astounding revelation will lead to stampedes toward First Class -- if only so that Economy Classers can bathe in the aroma of warm food before popping into the bathroom. I will update, should I hear.
I'm getting up slowly now.
The world is a strange place, isn't it?