Absurdly Driven looks at the world of business with a skeptical eye and a firmly rooted tongue in cheek.
These days, you book airline tickets and wonder what the true cost will be, rather than believing the number you first see on your screen.
You have to gird yourself for baggage fees and food costs. Hey, airlines even charge you extra to sit next to your kids.
But that's just in coach, right? You sit at the back and look enviously toward those business-class types who are fawned over like so many clod-brained Cleopatras.
They don't get nickel-and-dimed, do they?
They never used to, certainly. Now, there's a little annoying mission creep toward the front of the plane.
On the FlyerTalk forum, a new email from Swissair was just published. It tries to make something insulting sound so very, very uplifting.
"With the remodeling of SWISS Business on long-haul routes, we have introduced exclusive single seats that are marked by more space and discretion," it says.
"How glorious," the fine business class customers no doubt respond. Until, that is, they realize they have to pay more to book them.
"Due to the overwhelming demand concerning these 'Privacy seats'," the email says, "we will be giving our guests the opportunity to reserve these seats for a fee starting at the end of March."
How generous. Please conceive that business class isn't cheap. Such seats--some call them throne seats--used to be reserved until the last minute for the most elite of frequent flyers.
But someone thought to themselves: "Look, the potential for more money."
And a new charge was born.
It isn't yet clear how much it will be. But you might find a certain relief in the thought that airlines are now considering treating business class passengers at least a fraction as badly as they treat those in coach.
Swissair isn't, however, the first to start nickel-and-diming even those who are paying large amounts for creature comforts.
British Airways, for example, manages to poke its business class passengers in the eye while slipping its hand into their wallets. A short-haul business class seat assignment starts at $21. For long haul? $93. Yes, just to choose your seat in advance.
Yes, it really is like going to a very fancy restaurant and paying extra for your cutlery.
Oh, what am I saying? I've just given airlines another idea.