You, American Airlines, should no longer be flying across the Atlantic. You do not have the know-how. You do not have the equipment. And your employees have clearly lost interest in the endeavor. Like the country whose name graces the hulls of your flying ships, you are exhausted and shorn of purpose. You need to stop.
That’s how author Gary Shteyngart starts his trip report from a recent Paris – New York voyage on American Airlines. Well written and certainly gripping, though I’m not really sure it deserved to be published in the New York Times. But apparently this is pick on AA month and the NYT is getting in the game.
The short version of the story is a mechanical diversion led to an overnight in London, some trouble getting through immigration (because, as we all know, AA controls immigration queues at Heathrow), and then a second cancelation. Certainly not a great day for AA and not a great trip for the passengers, but also rather short of kafkaesque, the term used in the headline.
I have no idea why the Times thought this was worth publishing, other than that the first paragraph is pretty well written. And it was in the opinions section so I suppose he’s entitled to his. I’m just not sure why they thought the rest of us care about it so much. Or why the anti-America (the country, not American the airline) aspect is so tightly wound with his travel experience. Quite bizarre, indeed.