Having Fun With Resistance


The Federal Communications Commission recently proposed lifting the ban on cell phone use during flights. Realizing that flights were the one remaining place where people weren’t subjected to a stranger’s argument with their spouse, the FCC said “We have to do something about this.”

The public reaction was swift and vicious. It was like people calling into the Rush Limbaugh Show, only these folks were well informed. The FCC got bombarded with angry calls and emails from people opposing the rule change.

Phone use will probably be limited to texting or web-surfing. But who knows, voice calling might sneak through. One FCC commissioner said that preventing in-flight phone use “would allow airlines to infringe on the rights of wireless companies.”

Yup, when some guy looking to move up in the company spends two hours talking about rebranding strategies, you’re gonna hide in that little bathroom and say “Thank God we’re not infringing on some company’s rights.”

To summarize: allowing calls on flights makes about as much sense as having a Playboy Bunny teach a Womens’ Studies class. So we need a strategy to fight back in case voice calling slips through. Drawing on my childhood experiences in a Buick station wagon, I’ve devised a plan of resistance. Here it is:

Seconds after a voice call starts, an airline steward steps into the aisle at the front of the plane. And she starts singing:

“Ninety-nine bottles of beer on the wall, ninety-nine bottles of beer…”

The folks in rows 1-20 join in. The caller plugs a finger into their free ear and starts to speak louder.

People in the remaining rows join in. They sing with gusto. The sound becomes deafening:


The caller shakes their head in frustration. And then gives up.

This could totally work. And it’d be fun. Resistance should always be fun.

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