Friday, November 14, 2008

The Real Mile High Club

I'm sitting here, on board an American Airlines 767 somewhere about two thirds of the way from Los Angeles to New York. It's 9:40 pm at my destination and I'm typing out a blog. Yeah, I'm on the plane, writing a blog entry. Live.

Be careful what you wish for, I guess. Want to never not be connected, and this might be one of the last safe zones to be spoiled (I'm sure NYC subways can't be far behind). I'm in a big first class seat (thanks, Citibank AAdvantage) and trying to keep my eyes open while I complete my third hour of Wi-Fi use. I'd heard about the modern wonder of in-flight wireless, but now I'm online in real time.

The company that provides American with this juice is Gogo. I have no idea if it's just a front-of-the-plane luxury, but for $12.95, it's coach affordable. It's definitely made me the biggest geek in first class. In my ears, pulsing from a new iPod Touch, is "N.A.S.A. Anthem", an infectious slice of Apache-themed cosmic breakbeat (you heard it here first). But I digress. In front of me is a bright 15-inch MacBook Pro ("Do those keys light up?" the flight attendant says, wide eyed), linked to the heavens, pushing and pulling real time Web snacks off the warm Internuts. This is so live.

When I first got online, I immediately IM'd our editor Josh. Next thing I know, and I'm on iChat with my assistant Jolie. Then I have email downloading to Apple Mail. There was only one logical next step: Facebook. I can status update from 30,000 feet? "Raymond is blogging somewhere above the Great Lakes." Wait, somebody in LA just pinged me on IM. Damn, this is so worth 12 bucks.

Gogo gadget

I've always done some of my best thinking during that five hour black hole of time and space between coasts. I never land with anything less than a 20 emails to self on my Blackberry. Notes on everything from mundane company to dos to lofty wish lists. We're less than an hour from JFK right now, and I have't even turned my Crackburied on. If I had a thought, I emailed or AIM'd it. If I needed to watch a Youtube clip, I could have. For the frequent flier, this may be better than seat back television by a mile. Post complete.