What we’re watching: Southwest FA comic, Glow-in-the-dark roads, food on planes


This weekend we enjoy an inflight safety briefing from a creative Southwest flight attendant, we see a new way of lighting roads being tested in the Netherlands, and Baltic Air shows us a fascinating view of how they prepare customized meals for their flights — both business and coach.

“As you know, it’s a no-smoking, no-whining, no-complaining flight. It’s a ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ and ‘you are such a good-looking flight attendant’ flight”

This creative in-flight briefing had every passenger paying attention, some perhaps for the first time. They were lovin’ it. We learn about formerly mundane equipment that is available to all Southwest passengers such as their special-issue Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polka Dot Bikini. And, the flight attendant’s instructions about donning oxygen masks is priceless.

Glow in the dark roads

Anyone getting up in years knows the problems of seeing while driving at night. And, anyone who has driven on a freshly-painted road at night knows how much easier seeing the road markings setting the lanes and the edges of the road make driving. Now, a Dutch company has invented glow-in-the-dark, luminescent road paint to make driving safer for all.

It is being tested.

Light-absorbing glow-in-the-dark road markings have replaced streetlights on a 500m (0.3 mile) stretch of a highway in the Netherlands; this is just a test, and if everything goes alright, then authorities will implement them over longer and longer sections.

If this test works, the Dutch may roll out this paint technology on more roads and look into other inventions of this innovative company, Roosegarde studio.

The Telegraph notes:

The glow in the dark roads use hi-tech photoluminescent paint, which charges up during daylight hours before “turning on” at night.

Created by Dutch companies Studio Roosegaarde and Heijmans Infrastructure, the roads can glow for up to 10 hours at night, reducing or even removing the need for street lighting.
The researchers have also developed a temperature-sensitive road paint which shows ice crystals when the temperature falls below freezing to warn drivers of slippery conditions.

Getting in-flight victuals from the caterer to the plane

Ever wanted to see how an airline caterer gets an airline meal to your seat? Inflight Feed, the tasty online guide to airline food, revamped its website this week and the team decided to put together a brief video on how Latvian-based airline Air Baltic gets a meal to your seat.

The video takes a look at how business and economy class meals are prepared at the airline’s catering facility, then arranged on meal trays and kept fresh all before being delivered to your flight. Air Baltic is famous for their 2013 invention of the website concept which allows economy class passengers the option to pre order up to 70 different inflight meal options up to 48 hours prior to departure.

This rather cool system allows passengers to choose whatever meal, drink and dessert they would like on their airline meal tray. You simply pick and choose exactly what you want on your meal tray and the meal is then served to you inflight as per your exact order! At their facility in Riga, their catering partner LSG make around 4,500 meals every day and the airline sells around 14,000 cups of coffee every month.

  • AndTheHorseYouRodeUpOn

    I’m sorry, (WN) this is just not funny. We don’t need a standup comedy routine. Just shut up and do the safety drill. Maybe they should rename themselves Disney Air for all the childish, silliness they foist on passengers. Ridiculous.

  • JLM276

    Agreed! Years ago I got on a Sunday evening flight out of Phoenix. I’d worked all day and had to be at work early Monday morning. There were delays, the A/Cs hadn’t cooled the cabin. The flight attendant was trying to run some sort of silly game while all I wanted to do was sleep.

  • AndTheHorseYouRodeUpOn

    I can actually top that – and it’s one of the things that has turned me off about Southwest. I too was on a later evening flight from Tampa. It started at the gate, where the agent was trying to be funny – just a waste of time pre-boarding to try to have a comedy routine. Then I got on the airplane and once in the air one of the FA’s started a whole joke thing going on topped off by announcing the birthday of a 4-year-old in the cabin and we should all clap and sing Happy B’day. She just wouldn’t stop – almost making passengers feel compelled to participate. Needless to say, I didn’t join in.

    Next, my sister worked for Southwest reservations for 11 years and the stories she told me couldn’t top the worst day at the MAJOR airline I work for. They were one step short of religious fanatics and overly dramatic about being team players and all the Disney mindset – they could do no wrong yet they would walk people off if they didn’t maintain this mindset 24/7.
    Oh, and I forgot, I couldn’t stand their uniforms — how about looking like an airline instead of looking like you work at Staples or Home Depot ?. The only reason I flew them was because we can get non-rev passes for $25.00. They are awful and many recent articles now emphasize they are like every other major airline – problems with salaries, unions, management, etc etc etc.

  • Vec14

    I will admit it’s been awhile since I flew Southwest (now that their prices aren’t super-cheap) but when I did fly them regularly, I appreciated the stand-up comedy safety routine or the couple of times the FAs would sing (most memorable – having an FA sing boarding instructions to the tune of ‘Rawhide’). I do remember being on one flight in particular where it seemed all the FAs and even the pilots were cracking jokes – every time the PA sounded they had people’s attention. Annoying? Maybe to some, but if there had been an emergency, they would have had the entire plane’s attention, which is more than I can same for some flights I’ve been on, when I could barely hear the announcements or they’ve been delivered in a very bored monotone.

    AirlineEmployee – I actually used to think the crew outfits were pretty smart – comfortable and let them effectively work. Again, in an emergency, pants and running shoes are a whole lot more practical than heels in a skirt (at least among US airlines – int’l is a whole other story, but I’ll stop there).

  • http://tsanewsblog.com/214/news/history-repeats-itself-with-tsas-strip-search-tactics/ Lisa Simeone

    Totally agree. Back when I still flew in the U.S., I took Southwest once. And swore never again. First of all, the cattle call routine was insane. Second, the idiotic and, yes, childish faux-funny routines were obnoxious.

    The FAs were all duded up in some sports costumes (yeah, because we’re all just gaga about football). It was rah-rah this and rah-rah that — and singing songs. The forced conformity was overwhelming. I thought, “Where am I? Are there any professionals here??”

    But of course most Americans love it. Because it’s cheap. Proving once again what we talked about last week — if the price was right, you could stack them on slabs like in a morgue and they’d be happy.