Paying a Little More for a Little Less …

 People hate to be chiseled … nickel-and-dimed … squeezed for an extra dollar or so … especially when there is an element of deception to it. And that’s what many of the airlines are doing to us. Well, not ALL of us. People flying up front in first or business class … they’re getting more and more perks by the day.

I recently came across an interesting and incisive observation about a fairly recent practice by the airlines. They squeeze the space in economy class and then offer a new class of service. It’s still economy, but with a little extra leg room … and of course there’s an extra fee attached. The writer put it this way: the airlines, he said, have taken away some of our legroom and are now trying to sell it back to us. Yes! Exactly! And they wonder why we’re pissed.

 There is some good news: The wine tastings are back on Amtrak’s Coast Starlight. There is now a $7.50 charge, however, taking us full circle-and-a-half. When first instituted a number of years ago, the wine and cheese tastings were free. Then there was a $5.00 charge. Then they were free again. Then  they were discontinued as a cost-cutting measure. And now they’re back, but for an additional two-and-a-half bucks … but there’s no cheese this time around. I don’t know how successful this new iteration is going to be. I was on the Coast Starlight last week, riding from Davis, California, down to Los Angeles, and only three of us showed up in the parlor car for the wine tasting, despite several P.A. announcements. 

 … and Getting a Lot More for Free.

And, finally, I don’t know how it’s possible that I had never seen this wonderful photo of Johnny Pesky before today, but I can’t resist posting it. Pesky played eight years for the Boston Red Sox, not including a three-year hiatus from 1943 to 1945 when he served in World War II. He played in all seven games of the 1946 World Series, which the Red Sox lost, and he managed the team for two years in the early 60s. Johnny Pesky was a fixture in the Red Sox clubhouse on almost a daily basis until his death in 2012 at the age of 93. 

This photo of Pesky embracing Red Sox pitcher, Curt Schilling, was taken the night the Red Sox won the World Series in 2004, their first championship since 1918 after several heart-breaking near misses. If you want to know what winning the World Series after an 86-year drought meant to Red Sox fans everywhere, the expression on Johnny Pesky’s face tells you.