Psycho Circus Alaska Airlines Style

Well, here we are again on the psycho circus, otherwise known as the cattle train to the great white north. This time it is a rare treat. I’m on one of the few combi planes in the Alaska Airlines fleet. It is unique in that it the front of the plane is loaded with cargo–most likely people’s impulse purchaes from Amazon and Ikea heading to Alaska. The paying folk sit in the back of the plane and have to walk outside and up a flight of stairs just like our Commander in Chief, P-BO, himself.

I am surrounded by guys in fake fedoras, girls with badly painted toenails and business men traveling in three piece suits. How in the world could anyone be comfortable in a clip on tie and an ill-fitting, way-to-tight vest? Why are they wearing a suit anyway? It’s a evening flight to Anchorage that arrives sometime around 2:30 in the morning. Who are they trying to impress? The tourist with the camera around his neck and a “made in China” Alaska t-shirt with a cute and cuddly moose and bear cheerily holding hands.

I have taken this trip many times over the past couple years. Each time the cargo hold of the aircraft is a little heavier with my four or five bags stuffed full of things we left behind on our move up. You know, important stuff like X-boxes, wooden bowls and coffee that’s been stashed away in the freezer at the in-laws.

In one of the bags is roughly 200 music cd’s. I have a pretty good re-sell business on Amazon.

In another is two bottles of the finest handmade Colorado whiskey that money can buy. It’s from a small distillery in Denver. This isn’t your grandpa’s sippin’ whiskey, folks. This is 94 proof, put hair on your chest liquid amber!

I had to follow a couple of regulations according to the Alaska State Troopers. THOSE guys. They have their own “reality” show on Nat-Geo. It’s funny you notice the little things when you live in Alaska and you watch that show. Things like they say they are in Palmer and in reality (oops, there’s that word again) they are busting a drugged out junkie in Shanty Town some 35 miles away up the Parks Highway.

But getting back to the whiskey. If you watch Alaska State Troopers you know that a good portion of the Greatland is “dry”. That means no alcohol allowed! The regulations if you bring distilled spirits, or anything drink of pleasure for that matter, you have to follow the rules.

They are:

*Clearly marked in no less than 2 inch letters in contrasting colors the words: Alcoholic Beverage

*A receipt taped to the box outlining the contents, quantity and price of the items there in

*and..telling the airlines,or worse the cute flight attendant in the too-tight skirt, is not an excuse if you don’t follow above.

If you don’t follow the rules there is a good chance they will confiscate your booze and you will go to jail and pay a hefty fine. Heck you might even make it on the Troopers show.

But back to the Stranahans…the name of the whiskey I’m transporting. We bring up a bottle or two for gifts. This stuff is for things that we celebrate in Alaska; hunting season, fishing season, break up, freeze up, PFD check day, or just your regular old Saturday night.

We don’t waste the good stuff on bar mitzvahs, birthday parties or Monday Night Football. That’s what Alaskan Amber (beer brewed in Juneau) is for.

Well I better end this rant here. The guy beside me is getting restless and might have to go to the bathroom. God, it must suck to pay good money for a middle seat. Buddy, did you book this trip last night?! If you have a bit of planning you can get an aisle seat.
Until next time…
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