United Airlines, my hero of the skies (not sarcastic, I love United) created a new class of service a couple years ago. They call it “Economy-Plus.” Basically, it’s a coach seat in the emergency exit row with twice the legroom of a regular coach seat. Most airlines have extra legroom in the exit row due to logistics, but United further extended that legroom and created a sort of half-coach, half-business row. For a couple hundred dollars extra (or a couple $10 extra, depending on the route) United fliers get a lot more room to stretch out, and can take advantage of the business/first check-in line at the airport. But, no entry to the business/first class lounge at the airport, no free booze on the flight, and the same food that coach eats (assuming food is served) are the drawbacks that make this a half-way endeavor. From a business perspective, I can understand United’s reasoning here. I could also understand why a passenger may wish to indulge in this product.
Yet, I would never fly in Economy Plus. Why? Because it’s mid-range. I don’t believe in mid-range. Usually, you end up paying too much to get out of the low-end with too much of the low-end bullshit involved. So, I fly economy, or business (rarely), but never Economy Plus. I don’t stay at Holiday Inn or Raddison or the like. I stay at the Super 8, or Motel 6 or some lower fleabag, or I stay (rarely) at the Ritz. I drink rotgut store-brand liquor (some of my favorites include Jewel Premium and Commander) or I drink Grey Goose. I never drink Absolut or Johnny Red. I’d use a beer example here as well, but that would imply that Budweiser or Coors or whatever is of higher quality and taste than PBR. It’s not.
This has long been my philosophy. I am not one for half-assing it. I’m of the opinion that, while there are many flavors to life, most can fall into two categories: sustenance and living it up. As I have never been a rich man or a successful man or a smart man or a handsome man or - wait,, what was I talking about? Oh, yeah. Due to budget constraints, I generally opt for the sustenance option, but if I am to occasionally splurge, I do it right. I feel no need to frequently eat at the Applebee’s of the world when I can stick to Taco Bell most of the time (dear god how I wish that were a valid option here) and occasionally hit up, I don’t know, Charlie Trotters.
What does any of this have to do with right now? Well, not half-assing but instead, I don’t know, none-assing and full-assing goes beyond the economic realm as well. It also involves major decisions on my horizon. This, combined with the cold weather and thus lack of convenience store table to booze and write at, has played into why I’ve been shunning this blog the last few weeks. My contract ends, for all practical purposes once vacation time is considered, in 2 days. Thus, I am faced with a pretty big decision on what to do for winter vacation/2008/the rest of my life.
I saw my options as 4-fold. I could renew my contract with my school and go on vacation somewhere in Asia for shits and grins, but not go home for another year. Or, I could go “home” for a couple weeks, back to the land of my roots -Lawflortimorgo. And yeah, I hate those commercials too, but a two-week trip to the States demands stops in Lawrence, Florida, Baltimore, and Chicago. Or, I could take my free plane ticket home that I would get for quitting my job, bum around the aforementioned 4 places for 3 months or so (in the dead of winter) and get a new job in Korea in April or so. Finally, I could leave Korea entirely, so I could settle down in the city of X, drive a brand-spanking new Y, and work for the fine people at the Z corporation.
I’ve made a choice. Options 2 and 3 are off the board, because those are the half-ass options. And because Option 4 is both too much of a stretch and also too much of what I always do - raise up stakes and move somewhere new- I’m looking at option one now. I’m sorry to everybody I wanted to see and everybody I love, but it just seems like it makes the most sense to skip going home. So, I’m going to go to the Philippines ( a place where the Ritz costs 70 bucks a night) so I can sit on the beach and drink 30 cent beers. And, to take a proper vacation for the first time in forever, one that isn’t just 4 or 5 days. I hope you aren’t mad, and that you decide to come visit. I’m always open to visitors. Plus, I should be totally rich, so if you come out here for a visit, I’ll buy you tons of beers.