Flight Thoughts (3/15/07)
We are currently flying over the Pacific Ocean–though this will, of course, be posted when we get to the hotel–I’m listening to Blow Up Hollywood’s album fake with my relatively new earphones, a pair of Ultimate Ears super .fi 3 Studio’s. I had previously stayed away from the “in ear” style, preferring larger headphones with noise reduction, but after reading a bit about the Ultimate Ear line, and finding that the convenience of a small and portable set of headphones would work better for daily commuting, I decided to get their cheapest model. I have to say that I was, and still am impressed, with just how much outside noise these suckers block. Making a seal in your ear is weird and it takes a while to get over feeling like your head is stuffed up, but I have never had my iPod turned down so low. Because they block out so much noise, a low volume goes a long way. The sound quality is good, not as rich or full as a full sized headphone set to be sure, but a damn sight better than generic earbuds or the $20 cheap, portable headphones. I would love to someday be able to afford the custom made models. If size and portability are important to you and you can get over the plugged up feeling of having these seal off your ears, I totally recommend them.
So we’ve been flying for almost 7 hours at this point. Current altitude is 34000 feet and speed is 524 mph. I’ve spent most of the trip listening to music (Son Volt’s new album, The Search, Red House Painter’s Old Ramon, Sigur Ros’ Takk, in addition to the already mentioned fake) and reading a really amazing book called Ink: The Book of All Hours, which is a sequel to Vellum: The Book of All Hours, which I meant to blog about when I read it several months ago, but never got around to it. I hope to put together some of my thoughts on both of them when I finish Ink, but briefly: if you need a linear plot, these are not the books for you. however, if don’t mind parallel universes and stories, the same characters in different iterations; if you like sharply poetic, jagged prose and a multiplicity of classical, pop culture, literary, music, nanotech or physics related references; if you want to read something that forces you to really engage the narrative and in some sense, help put it all together, then you will definitely like these books.
The food service was, of course, pretty bad and I’m starting to get hungry again. We didn’t bring any of our own food, mostly because J’s bag was pretty full and I wanted to stay with a pretty small shoulder bag that only had room for my computer, journal, a book, headphones, ipod, gum, and space for me to stash my keys and wallet. I’m hoping they serve a snack soon.
J’s battery is running down on her iBook, so I’ll finish this up. More to come soon.