Whenever taking an airplane anywhere, remember how boring it is in coach class. I always try to remember to take a book or a few good magazines (C/C++ Users Journal is a good one), and maybe an MP3 player of sorts to keep me company on the trip. However, due to Murphy's Law, I always manage to bring a magazine I've already read cover to cover, and I leave my book and MP3 player in the bag that got checked in, and not in my carry-on bag. So... What to do?

After scanning over the "What to do incase of an emergency" card, making sure I'm of age if seated next to an emergency exit, and thinking about how great it would be to swap the emergency cards out with the ones from Fight Club, you look to see what else is in the seat pocket in front of you. You will normally find, in between the barf bag and some airline magazine a SkyMall catalog.

The SkyMall catalog is full of mostly useless overpriced items. There are a few interesting items here and there, but I haven't seen any really truly useful that I couldn't get for half-price anywhere else.

The catalog does have almost everything in it. Stuff from body pillows, to towel warmers, to meats, to alcohol, to world biggest crossword puzzle, to nose hair clippers, to reminders that calls on the SkyFone are free if you place an order... I usually manage to flip through the catalog before the airplane even takes off. However, during the flight, I normally pick the catalog up and start reading page by page since it actually is pretty interesting. Interesting for sitting in a cramped space for a few hours anyway. It's a good way to waste an hour or so before getting served peanuts and soda and then trying to figure out useful ways to use a barf bag.

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