Meet the Pandemic Glue
Courtesy of Google News:
Courtesy of Google News:
I flew back from San Jose through Minneapolis and Amsterdam this week, on NWA. Luxembourg being one of the few airports around the globe that still haven't decently implemented e-Tickets, I was traveling on my usual paper ticket for the entire trip.
I knew that Northwest has replaced staff at smaller outstations with minimum wage workers. But the experience in San Jose was mind-boggling: The first employee at check-in obviously hadn't ever seen a paper ticket before, and tried to coerce my passport into the e-ticket check-in machine (which first failed because she mechanically mis-handled the thing). When I insisted that I had a paper ticket and showed her the coupons, she mis-took them for boarding passes. "No. I need a boarding pass. This is not a boarding pass. This is a paper ticket flight coupon." Employee number two at least found the right menu on the check-in computer's screen; he then proceeded to get confused as to whether he needed to check for a visum to let me travel to the European Union. "I'm a German citizen who lives in Luxembourg. I'm in the US under the US visa waiver program for a short-term business trip. I don't need a visum to travel back from the US to my country of residence." That was apparently information he was unable to extract from my passport and his system. The next question was then whether the passport's expiration date was 11 February or 2 November. (The date format used on German passports actually can be inferred from my birthday, but once again that was too much for this agent.) When the confusion was over, he didn't even know how to properly staple together a boarding pass and a paper ticket.
As the icing on the cake in San Jose, I got the dreaded "SSSS" on my boarding pass (although I'm a top-tier frequent flyer with a close partner of NWA); funny enough, the TSA agents in San Jose couldn't be bothered and waved me through considerably more efficiently than a lot of other security droids that I have had fun with recently.
Once in Minneapolis, things were mostly done competently -- though agents there almost forgot to take the green visa waiver stub out of my passport. Hadn't I thought of it myself, I might have faced not-so-funny interactions next time at US immigrations.
The morale of the story is that, in times of cost-savings and automation in the travel business, you're increasingly lost if you don't know yourself how things are handled.
The petitioner requests that Bristol City Council rejects calls from Conservative Cllr Spud Murphy to remove the Banksy painting on Park Street at significant expense, and instead keeps it as a popular and amusing asset to the city for so long as Bristol residents continue to support it.
The art in question.
I spent a splendidly sunny Saturday morning on Kirchberg -- not just Luxembourg's quartier Européen, but also the site of a huge amount of public spending into some rather fine modern architecture: Christian de Portzamparc's Philharmonie and IM Pei's Musée d'Art Moderne.
Fortunately for me, the Philharmonie was actually open for a group of fashion photographers (or so it seemed). I did get to take some nice shots of the entrance hall before I was very politely shown the door by a security guard.
At MUDAM, I wasn't surprised to once again find the architecture more impressive than the art shown, this time, a number of works by the late Michel Majerus. Fortunately, MUDAM has an enlightened photo policy: As long as you don't use the flash, they'll leave you alone.
ICANN's At Large Advisory Committee (I was on that committee in a prior life; it's supposed to advocate users' interests in ICANN) seems to have opened up the mailing list that it's suggested to use for the bulk of its work. There's, of course, also an internal list that the public doesn't get to see. It was probably time for this move.
Push the Brand was quick to remix last week's Aqua Teen Hunger Force Witch Hunt: Fifty open infernal chests with garlic, rosaries, and a crucifix had been distributed across Luxembourg city this Tuesday, deposited in front of posters showing a glamorously photographed beauty that had obviously been the victim of vampirism, with the slogan "préparez-vous." The public reaction included traffic chaos and bomb experts who were quick to realize that the coffins were quite harmless. The police collected all boxes.
It's unknown what this advertising is all about, but the campaign was clearly successful. Push the Brand has, of course, apologized.