About three years ago, I boarded a plane to Florida on a brutally snowy January day. The unpleasant weather made for terrible flying conditions and the flight had been delayed countless times. As we sat on the runway waiting and waiting for the tower to approve take off, most passengers played a mean game of Angry Birds (it was 2011, after all) or battled it out on Words with Friends.
This was before the Federal Aviation Administration allowed the use of mobile devices during takeoff and landing, and as we were parked on the runway, the flight attendants didn't raise any qualms. One particular passenger, a tall, handsome man in an expensive collared shirt, was frustrated with the delays, screaming into his Blackberry three rows in front of me, very vehemently voicing his rage at the weather to anyone in earshot.
When the captain announced that we were finally headed to the Sunshine State, flight attendants scurried down the rows asking us to put away mobile devices, and most everyone obliged ... or at least pretended.
The businessman, however, just would not hang up his call. As one flight attendant attempted to make it through the safety video over his booming voice, another tried to reason with the man, and as she failed, a third attendant joined in on the efforts. No one could hear the safety demonstration. Their voices grew increasingly stern as we taxied toward takeoff, until the captain threatened over the intercom, just as many parents before him, that he absolutely would turn this bird around if we didn't start behaving.