I live in New York, which is the greatest city in the fucking world, but as anyone who lives here will tell you, to love it, you need to leave it. Regularly.
One of life’s funny little things is that, when you’re young, you can’t imagine why old people, by which I mean anyone older than you, could possibly need the shit that they do, other than perhaps lazy complacency in a materialist society. Then one day, you find yourself as one of those fucking old people wanting those same things.
Having undergone this transformation, I’ve figured it out: you are required to take on more and more responsibility, your body feels more and more like shit, and it dawns on you one day that you’re going to die. (There’s also certainly some component of complacency, or at least acceptance of things you once refused, but that’s another discussion for another day.)
Therefore, it becomes much more worthwhile, when you travel, to transport your tired, aching, slowly dying body via international business class, because of course it does. Sitting between two people in economy for a thousand hours ain’t the same thing at 46 as it is at 26. As they say, life is too short.
And also, you want to go places, because fuck it, life is challenging, and travel is fun. Futhermore, you’re going to die. If you wait, you’ll have a hard time going anywhere other than the afterlife of your chosen belief system. (If it has one; mine doesn’t, so I’m that much more motivated to sieze the moment.)
So, there I was: one day, I woke up, and I realized I wanted to go places with Caroline, and I wanted the travel and accomodations to be nice, and I don’t make a metric fuckton of money to throw at that problem. Therefore…drum roll…I wanted to be on the right points/miles/rewards program, and earning as much as I possibly can on it, so I can get as many travel perks as I possibly can for free.
This led me to an odyssey of depth and concentration, in which I discovered a plethora of web sites written by crazy people devoted to this very topic. I now know plenty about this shit, but I’m always going to be an amateur compared to these people, and I’d rather keep it that way. Rather than figuring out every single travel reward possibility in the universe, I just want to learn enough to discover what, as a New Yorker, is the best way for us to earn free travel, without working very hard at it, so we can get the fuck out of town. Comfortably.