Or a follow-up? It’s about the Capricorn and Pluto thing. Brand loyalty. In the late spring, I will be hopping up to Lubbock for graduation. Distant kin, more a quick trip because I can, rather than enforced. Work, but only in a tangental manner. Been most near four, five years or more since I was last there. Tall city. Pretty in a weird way. Oblique beauty. Edge of the “Llano Estacado,” the staked plains.

Lubbock, home of Texas Tech (Go Red Raiders) University. Too much time in Austin: Gig ‘Em Horns.

I’m brand loyal, to a fault. I’ve grown quite accustomed to flying Southwest Airlines. The no frills, no thrills service has been uniformly good. Been a few problems. Years ago, a delay left me in a Midland airport for over three hours. A decade ago, a flight attendant snapped at me. A few years later, one didn’t realize the phone I had was in airplane mode and told me to put it away. The old way of lining up to board, the earliest was best, that was good. The new attempt at “business class” is frankly annoying. While almost all of Southwest Airline travel is business, I detest the “business class” idea. And I prefer the one-class fits all seat size.

From what I gathered, the “no assigned seats” reduced boarding time and it lessened the amount of paperwork required by the gate agents.

For the Lubbock trip, it’s convoluted mess, but SWA didn’t open up the spring schedule, and the date coincides with Mother’s Day. So Friday fly to Lubbock, then Saturday, after graduation to Dallas, and then back home on Sunday

The first leg of the trip will include a flight on an American Eagle tiny turboprop. The planes I love to hate. American Eagle is the smaller, localized version of American Airlines. It’s the next step above crop duster, one step below commercial jet. Not a favorite with me. I’ve flown it a number of times, mostly out of SFO, once LAX, and not too often out of DFW. Tiny turboprops are high on my list of air travel, any travel, to avoid.

While I’ve been brand loyal to SWA, the increase is in its business attractions has caused me to look elsewhere for cheap travel. Like, back to American. The way it worked, that American flight was cheaper to get to Lubbock on the day before graduation, substantially less expensive than the SWA ticket.

As a stockholder (which I’m not), I would like the way SWA is charging more for tickets on that Friday the day before graduation. I understand that thinking, from a business perspective. But as a consumer, I’m more interested in paying less. I’ll take a seat on that tiny turboprop, and I’ll save nearly a hundred bucks. Worth is to me.

Mess around with a winning combination? Try to make a good thing, that’s simple, even better, and overdo it with features?


El Paso, from here, is a quick hour on a plane, via Southwest. On any other airline I’ve checked, price, on sale (some restrictions apply) is all within ten bucks of each other. But the other airlines all fly through DFW. Adding another layer of complexity and increasing the chance for failure. And takies a lot longer.

The whole point to flying? Leave home at 10 AM, 2 hours later? I’m walking out of the terminal in El Paso, waiting on Grace.