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Culture

Plane porn: Who wants it?

Why would anyone actually want to watch porn while packed in coach?

So the strangely pungent, limp-haired person sitting next to you on that astonishingly clean American Airlines plane might soon avail himself (oh, come on, you know it's more likely to be a "him") of the airline's Wi-Fi service and watch Good Will Humping.

I will leave it to those far wiser in the ways of matters legal to debate the potential lawsuits that might arise if airline passengers are allowed to watch pornography while clenching their behinds in seat 13B. However, a slightly different matter whips me about the crevices in this regard: what sort of person wants to watch porn on a plane?

Please forgive me, but I am told by those who avail themselves of Hefneresque materials that it is a singularly private pursuit. I am told such behavior sometimes occurs when one's spouse has an important business engagement, necessitating a (thankfully) late arrival back at Domestic Bliss Avenue.

So, what's he watching, huh? CC Moriza

I understand that perhaps a certain imbalance in sexual enthusiasm in longer-term relationships might lead individuals within the relationship to find succor in pornography--or even that couples might indulge in a little combined spectatorship to add a little paprika to their relationship. Of course, for some people, porn is just a way to get from one period of four minutes to the next.

But if you're packed into coach, having to perform certain movements from the Kama Sutra just to get your sweater off, how can you possibly be in the mood to huddle over your laptop and be swept away by the finely scripted acting of John Curtis Holmes or Jenna Jameson?

Flying is, in general, about as pleasurable as manually removing your nasal hair, and there are surely very few people who view pornography without being in a certain mood. Pornography of the "two thumbs up" variety may, I am told, also bring with it a certain change in the the viewer's demeanor and physical position--changes that a seat in coach manifestly does not allow.

Are there truly specimens in our vast and temporary world who would feel neither discomfort nor embarrassment nor even just a little tinge of other-directedness and would simply boot up a little jiggling booty as they float from Detroit to Dallas?

I know you will tell me there are. But I will continue in the mental bondage that prevents me from grasping how they might enjoy it.

Still, you might say, there are the folks in business class. They pay all that money for extra space, extra wine and, I suppose, other extras too. Surely even they, though, despite the additional width of their flying fiefdom, would be pushed hard to feign sanguinity watching the lithe writhing and the overendowed overacting.

I know there will be readers out there who will have already dared to join this Mile Sigh Club on their portable DVD players. There will be those who say live and let live, love and let love, the Internet is freedom and it's my freedom that matters most. Others might say block out this filth, Beijing Olympics-style.

But I find myself far more focused on these peculiar high-flying perps themselves. I don't want anyone disturbing me on a plane. Isn't a porn peep-show merely another way a fellow passenger can make your flying life just a little more unbearable?

This is porn in a public place, which might strike the innocent bysitter as being not entirely dissimilar to their first encounter with a flasher.

So perhaps there might be a rule that you can watch whatever you like, but if anyone is disturbed--and I'm talking sound or vision here--you would have to agree to a suitable forfeit as decided by the airline in question.

What if an airline decided that anyone caught disturbing others by displaying a penchant for stimulation in the skies would be asked to, say, don a large inflated condom on their head for the rest of the flight?

This might seem a little Napoleon Dynamite. But can you think of a quicker way to get teenage boys to forsake their less than endearing habits?