I have to travel for business later this month. It’s been years since I’ve flown.
I hate flying.
It’s not so much that I’m scared of flying. It is natural to fear falling out of the sky. It’s moreso that im uncomfortable flying.
One trip my wife and I took, I don’t remember where but she was flying a lot and for that reason was able to board the plane (with me in tow) first.
Like that’s some kind of privilege. Hint: it’s not for me.
I remember sitting there, hood on my blue hoodie pulled up way over my eyes, headphones on with some kind of supposedly relaxing binaural beats blaring and a growing sense of claustrophobia as people piled themselves and their stuff into this little metal tube.
I hate flying.
To add, I hate the little tray in its resting position. I never lower it. I don’t get a drink because I don’t want to have to pee and get up. I don’t get any food because honestly, missing a meal on a plane is not a big deal unless you’re 4 years old.
Meanwhile, sitting next to me, my wonderful wife is munching on snacks, sipping a glass of wine and laughing at a movie on the screen.
Next to her, I’m curled up into a human beanbag chair doing one thing. Waiting. Waiting for it to all be over.
Eventually, I get a doctor to prescribe me some light stuff to take the edge off. And also develop a few psychological tricks so I don’t even need any pills.
I hate it. I’d rather never do it.
But still, I have to.
So I had a billion dollar idea. An Elon Musk game-changing approach to air travel.
It came to me a few months ago after I had a very super minor procedure done in a surgical center.
I mentioned to the nurse that I was anxious and she told the anesthesiologist and he said don’t worry, will give you something for that.
I don’t think I realized it would be the anesthesia. My wife kept telling me that the countdown from 10 to 1 while the knockout meds kicked in would be the most pleasant part of the day. I’ve never been under.
So they’re wheeling me into surgery, and the anesthesiologist gives me a shot of something to take care of the anxiety.
He says, “Feel any better?”
And I’m like no, not really.
He tells me I’ll feel better by the time we get to the second door.
As we’re rolling past Door Number 2, he asks again.
I say three words.
Where’s the party?
I don’t remember anything else. When I come too, I think I was so hopped up on the feel good drug he gave me that I don’t even remember the anesthesia. Someone has to explain to me that was the anesthesia.
Which brings me to my point on all this.
A lot of people (the Stoics annoyingly so) say it’s not the event that’s ever a problem. It’s your reaction.
And I agree wholeheartedly. I think a good approach is always to have a “we can handle this” type of mindset. And there are some tricks to this, I write a bunch about that in The Guide to Armchair Thrills coming out later this year, in addition to a boatload of other secrets for enjoying life to the fullest, from the comfort of your armchair, sitting in the safety of your home fortress. And maybe even in those rare occasions when you have to leave.
But what struck me so dramatically was how much of that “reaction” to events is based on the chemical soup floating around your head.
Change the chemicals, change your reaction.
Also, it works the other way too. Change the reaction and change the chemicals. There is a simple rule for knowing when to take which approach.
Which is all to say, here is my billion dollar idea. No NDA needed. If you want it take it. Might be a little too crazy for even Elon.
But if you like this idea, I believe it could revolutionize all kinds of travel. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if this is how humans travel long distances 10 years from now.
It solves the problem of feeling claustrophobic, of dealing with any bad actors. Terrorism during mass transit would be a thing of the past.
The answer you’re dying to know?
Put people under anesthesia before flying (or any other long travel). Use AI to monitor vitals.
It looks like this – you show up at the airport, you check-in, you check your bags.
Then you lay down on a stretcher.
A nice guy or gal comes along, gives you the happy shot and you wake up what feels like 5 seconds later in your hotel, at your destination city with your clothes all unpacked and in the drawers.
And should anything happen on the plane, something catastrophic, you won’t be fumbling with your tray, spilling your coke in the tiny plastic cup while trying to fasten your oxygen mask. No, you’ll be peacefully asleep and never know any better.
I told a friend this idea and he called it consensual human trafficking. Not a name or topic you should use when you talk to The Sharks, but you get the point.
You take the best part of surgery and you mix it with the worst part traveling and BAM, you got yourself a billion dollar idea.
Anesthesia shouldn’t just be for surgeries and creepy eccentric dead pop stars. It should also be for the rest of us jebronies looking for pain-free travel.
For more billion dollar ideas, keep an eye out here.
And don’t forget to tell Marky C. I said what’sup.