Absurdly Driven looks at the world of business with a skeptical eye and a firmly rooted tongue in cheek.
Every time you get on a plane these days, do you wonder how comfortable it will be?
Or how uncomfortable, perhaps?
The inexorable march of airlines sticking more seats into their existing planes is something that doesn't create difficulties just for passengers; it's a problem for airline employees, too.
More customers, less space doesn't make for exactly the ideal working conditions.
Still, the airlines won't stop.
Unless, that is, their own employees tell the CEO -- as happened with American Airlines employees -- that he's gone too far.
You'd think, perhaps, that it's reached the limit.
United Airlines just revealed that it's shoving another, well, 21 seats into its Boeing 757-300 planes.
Yes, there'll now be 234 seats on a single-aisled plane, 210 of them in Economy.
As FlightGlobal reports, the idea is to equip these planes with new, slimmer seats.
This will, of course, leave the airline claiming that passengers have the same amount of space as before.
Even when passengers' own eyes and math skills tell them this isn't the case.
Of course, the more seats you put on existing planes, the less overhead bin space there is for passengers and the longer it takes for them to get off the plane.
On the other hand, the more seats you put on existing planes, the more you tell yourself that you'll make more money and don't have to buy new planes.
In these times of Basic Economy fares -- or Sub-Cattle Class, as I believe they should be called -- airlines might also be hoping that the lessening of overhead bin space may encourage more people to buy Basic Economy fares.
Or, more likely, they'll be hoping that there'll be more money to be made from bags that have to be checked.
United isn't even the first to adorn its 757-300s with this many seats. Delta has been even more regressively progressive.
But at least Delta's Sub-Cattle Class fares allow passengers to bring a normal-size carry-on. United's don't.
I contacted United to confirm details of its latest densified move and will update, should the airline respond.
Still, perhaps you're moved by the idea of slimmer seats, ones that United has progressively been inserting into its planes over the past five years.
Well, those who have experienced them have found them less than conductive to bodily peace.
One reviewer described them as "torture."
So a New Year starts just as the last one finished, with airlines trying to squeeze passengers until they squeal.
And really, how much good has squealing ever done you before?