My girlfriend and I had an experience flying to Detroit that I'm sure many of you have had. Seated in a row of three in coach,

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Lard Is My Co-Pilot

What to do with obese air travelers?

My girlfriend and I had an experience flying to Detroit that I'm sure many of you have had. Seated in a row of three in coach, our row-mate was a woman who was at least 150 lbs overweight and required a seatbelt extension chord of sorts to buckle up. She also required half of my girlfriend's seat and, in turn, about a quarter of mine for the long flight east. My girlfriend, a petite lass, was squashed, miserable and helpless, as there are no special requirements for people of Farley-esque girth.

This got me thinking about how to accommodate humungous people on airplanes. Should they be required to purchase first class tickets, where the seats are roomier? Should they be required to purchase two coach seats as a courtesy to their next-door neighbor, who will inevitably be squashed and cheated out of already limited space that she paid hard-earned money for? Or should there be special big and tall jets and flights, just as there are big and tall clothing stores?

I'm not judging here: I could certainly stand to lose 10-15 lbs. myself; and I understand that there are certain healh conditions that make one's weight difficult to manage. But the folks I'm talking about are those who've let it go to the point of no return. Should they be required to pay extra for the privilege of flying while super-fat, or should it be the airlines who go the extra mile to satisfy the needs of a not-insignificant sector of their clientele?

 
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