Leaving Delta in 2015

Delta recently announced changes to the SkyMiles program for 2015. Miles will be awarded not by miles flown but by dollars spent.  For an example, see this grim comparison below of a $1,566 round-trip ticket from Lexington, Kentucky to Bangkok, Thailand (on a calculator ironically provided by Delta).


(Try it yourself here.)

I had originally thought to put forth a careful and detailed argument against this change, but no longer.  There is no point.  (See Delta’s Facebook page for the amusing consumer backlash versus Delta’s robotic copy-and-paste response policy.)

So I told Delta via Facebook that I’m leaving them for American Airlines in 2015.  This was their reply to my announcement of departure:

Hello Ryan Staples, please remember that you can continue to earn up to an additional 2 miles on Delta spend with the SkyMiles Credit Card. That is 40% , please remember that you can continue to earn up to an additional 2 miles on Delta spend with the SkyMiles Credit Card. That is 40% more miles on Delta flights as a General SkyMiles Member in the new 2015 program in addition to the miles you earn on every day spend with the Card. Thanks for voicing your concern.

(T.S. must be The System)

One thing I would suggest to Delta and The System: mile is a measure of distance, and if distance is no longer rewarded, then please don’t call them miles.

That just doesn’t fly with me.


The Gettysburg Address

The gentlemen and ladies of Why They Came and I celebrated Presidents’ Day this week by delivering President Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address.  I once experienced the surreality of having The Gettysburg Address recited to me by an elderly Japanese man in Ueno Park (that story warrants its own post), and our version is perhaps just as endearing and definitely much more awkward.

Yesss, I missspelled addresss in the creditsss.  Unfortunately, YouTube does not possess the glorious file replacement feature that makes Vimeo such a vastly superior host of video.   If it did, I could simply fix my typo, re-upload the file, and we’re none the wiser. Perhaps one [cold] day [in Hell], YouTube will care as much about its users as it does advertising and add such a feature.

Here’s a little behind-the-scenes iPhone video (held horizontally, as it should be)…


Collins Ave.

Arrived yesterday afternoon from Miami’s sunny 81° to Cincinnati’s sad snowy 25°.  An hour and a half later, back in Lexington to unpack Florida and pack for South Carolina (where I now sit).  Still dragging rear from a late-but-amusing evening with Philip Bloom and new friends from Filmgate, I had just enough energy to edit this little driving timelapse of my daily morning commute from Hollywood Beach to the Lincoln Road mall parking garage.  I have a ritual of listening to a liberal amount of Beach Boys in Florida rental cars and had gleefully saved my six-disc Made in California boxed set for this very trip.  So I stuck the GoPro to the hood, and with the radio blasting, went cruisin’ just as fast as I could (35mph).

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