Killing Time in Airports – Frequent-Flyer Style.

In order to ease the mind-numbing tedium of hanging around Munich airport, T.T. and I started playing “Any-Letter Airport Code”. It’s a reasonably pointless game – but a great time killer – in which you take turns to come up with a three-letter airport code containing a letter from anywhere within the previous code (i.e., not just the last letter, like in similar party games).

It turned out to be quite fun. Here’s what we got:

MUC-DME-MAD-DBX-LAX-LHR-FRA-PUN-DUB-BRU-BCE-PEK-PKC- (and this is where it got trickier! But we got there!) -KUL-CUN-NAS-SVO-SFO-OGZ (I thought I’d beaten T.T. here for sure, but then he comes back and finishes me off!) – ZUR! Eeh, the things you (we) do when bored, eh? :)

It was just then that a stewardess approached us and told us to switch off all our electronic devices in a thick German accent that brooked no opposition.

Any-Letter Airport Code got me thinking: we could set up and organize a large-scale, multi-participant game of “Boarding Pass Bingo”! The idea is pretty straightforward:

  1. The host thinks of a two-digit number – XX – which is the number set for the winning “turn” (see below), without announcing it out loud, while at the same time presents the first boarding pass (with a three-letter airport code). Note: an airline ticket can be used instead of a boarding pass.
  2. The players take it in turns to show their scanned boarding passes (or air tickets) with airport codes containing a letter of the previous boarding pass (boarding passes must be no more than 12 (or, say, three or six) months old)).
  3. The winner is the person who shows a boarding pass/ticket at turn XX (note – the caller’s initial turn is turn number “0”).
  4. A boarding pass can only be used once per game. Boarding passes used in earlier games can be used again in new games.
  5. If you don’t have a boarding pass, you can use a photo as proof that you’ve been to the city in question.
  6. I don’t know what the prize would be yet.
  7. For privacy and security reasons I suggest removing or blocking out private details such as names and surnames, personal codes for frequent flyers, etc. But the date and flight number must remain untouched. There’s a three-turn penalty for any Photoshop fraud.
  8. To make the game more interesting, you can use the boarding passes of your friends and colleagues – but only boarding passes! And only once per game.
  9. No cheating!: Flight attendants, other airline employees and airport cleaners are not allowed to play! Pilots are welcome though.
  10. We could also have games with companies as participants (a kind of B2B game). Besides the prize, the winner would get a hefty discount on a corporate product for next year.
  11. That’ll do for now. You can come up with the rest.
  12. Aaaaah, I can’t stop! There could also be inter-airline games! Aeroflot vs. Lufthansa, etc.!

So, fancy a game? I’ll be the host…

Hold on – all this game-creation talk has kept me from telling you the stuff I was originally wanting to tell you…

Miami: a real nice place. I think I need to go back there and take a more thorough look around. I didn’t get to see very much at all. We had two days of recharging the physical and emotional batteries and before you know it our suitcases are packed again and it was back on the road.

Over the pond, turns out the whole of London generally, and Heathrow in particular, is still preparing for the Olympic Games. The thronging crowds, long lines, sluggish staff, and out-of-service horizontal escalators must be part of some original British strategy for getting ready for the world’s biggest sporting event – and not in honor of my arrival in the United Kingdom to change planes (I thought the Brits might have been rancorous after my last (scathing) London-themed post!)

Btw, does anyone know what this green dummy-plane thingy is next to Virgin’s hangar at Heathrow Airport? Most odd…

And one more thing!

I was invited for the first time to the “24 Hours Munich” bash held by Deutsche Telecom. This was very exclusive, with only a few guests invited, and most interesting. It was a rather down-to-earth affair, simple with no bells on, and to-the-point – in keeping with these straitened times. A closed club for the euro/world IT-business top movers and shakers. I was honored at being invited as a guest. I got in some of my tales from the dark side of cyber-threats too – fairly scaring folks as I tend to do. Not for the sake of spooking them sadistically, but to have them think more seriously about a secure future; but regular readers know all that by now. Anyway, the meeting took place here:

The flight attendant has just walked down the aisle uttering those same dreaded words “please turn off all electronic devices” in her persuasive German. It’s times like these I recall my old dream of having mechanical musical ears that would look like a three-inch gramophone with a big old needle and a wind-up handle. They’d have some trouble finding anything electronic in that! I want my mechanical musical ears!

Oh, we’re landing… OK, OK – I’m turning off! Entschuldigung.

And finally – we’ve reached our destination. So, it’s hello from…

…Brussels! A kind of magnetism or something going on here – we keep getting drawn back to this city. What a shame. Not. Two Leffe, please. Dank u!

7 Responses to “Killing Time in Airports – Frequent-Flyer Style.”

  1. Hello,

    Sorry, I don’t get it :/
    How do you get from FRA to PUN? :D

    Cheers

  2. The big green thing in front of the Virgin hanger, is a mock up plane used by the Heathrow firefighters

  3. I think the green one is a training dummy for airport firefighters.
    Btw. great game you came up with!

  4. No pun intended, this really keeps me wondering.

  5. The big green thing at Heathrow is actually a Chinese plane containing 2,000 hackers who are still stuck in immigration hoping to be admitted before the Olympics and are hopeful of winning the gold medal for hacking, well it is a sport? Right??

  6. This Virus was Started by a Government Official..In My State.I Live in Northeast,Ohio(USA).Can You Help..Please.

    Kiddie Porn Virus
    Posted: Jul 06, 2012 9:38 PM EDT
    Updated: Jul 09, 2012 10:21 PM EDT

    (WOIO) – One click and your computer is hacked!

    19 Action News investigates the child porn virus, taking the Internet by storm.

    This Virus was Started by a Government Official..In My State.I Live in Nio

    Will the FBI be knocking at your door. What you need to know — the XXX virus.

  7. Can I Borrow a “Eugene Kaspersky”..Anti-Virus Tank?Please

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