Every Friday evening, some time before most people have clocked out of work and begin heading home for the weekend, a plane takes off from LAX.
Like so many other flights at this time, this one is also heading to Las Vegas. It’s not full of gamblers, however, but rather a disproportionate amount of silicone that bounces and jiggles through the warm, desert-air turbulence all the way to Vegas where, for the remainder of Friday and Saturday night, it will continue quivering away at $20 a pop.
This, folks, is the Southwest Stripper Plane.
The passengers are LA’s greatest temporary export, heading off for a weekend of singles and 20s to help baby pay the rent. They are blessed with the sun-kissed glory of Southern California and enhanced by the world’s greatest plastic surgeons, and of course every single one is a struggling teacher, college student, or some other admirable profession that will keep suckers reaching into their wallet time after time to help out their worthy cause, whatever it might be.
No one really knows what time this legendary, perhaps even mythical flight leaves Los Angeles. Seats are reserved months in advance and few mere mortals are able to secure a reservation. A friend of mine claims he once found himself on this flight but can’t seem to remember the details, as though some powerful force scrubbed his brain clean, leaving only a trace of glitter on his sweaty forehead.
Others less fortunate can only dream that the planets align one day and that they find themselves sitting on a plane in Los Angeles watching their fellow passengers squeeze their gigantic moneymakers into Southwest’s cramped economy seats. If there was ever a time for long delays or a casualty-free crash on a desert island, this would certainly be it.