Live..from Seattle


OK, well technically, from Alaska Airlines, originating in Seattle. And not so much live as “earlier today”. Anyhoo…


On my flight today, in the restroom (yes, a new low on my blog…whee!) , the air freshened hanging on the door looked a little suspect. Don’t tell anyone, but I stepped up to sniff it (sorry, I was curious…I wanted to know if I smelled what I thought I smelled). It was coffee. Not a coffee scented air freshener (as if there is such a thing). Actual coffee, in a filter bag, hanging on the door. Weird.


I walked back to my seat thinking “whateve you do, don’t ask for coffee”.


(True story)

Comments (21)

  1. Well maybe they thought since you were in the Pacific Northwest you all needed to have the familiar scent. Or maybe they wanted to throw off the dogs on those drugs they were importing. :)

  2. Tim says:

    Makes you wonder what kind of air freshener you get when the flight originates from Humbolt County.

  3. Jonathan says:

    I have a couple of possible solutions to this riddle.

    1) The overworked flight attendant accidentally switched the coffee filter and the deoderizer. Did you try the coffee and think "hmmm, this tastes like Tropical Breeze?"

    2) This is one of the cost-cutting aspects that the airlines are implementing to compete against the low-cost fares?????

    3) It’s a trial period for a new scent from Glade "Freshly Ground"

    Actually, this story kind of reminds me of last Friday’s "Monk" on USA Network. "Ewww, this wine has a funny smell, but I can’t put my figure on it" (Won’t spoil it, but you need to see it….)

    Be thankful that it was a coffee filter and not a diaper…..

  4. Russ says:

    Maybe they ran out of ….hazelnut.

  5. Chris says:

    This is a standard flight attendant trick when the cleaning crew has not put an air freshener in there. Sadly I have 1 million air miles and counting. The coffee in the head is a pretty regular occurance!

  6. Lourdes says:

    ::: laughing ::: I agree with the earlier post – it definitely could have been worse!

    You know, someone (Martha Stewart?) once suggested putting coffee beans in your car’s ashtray (assuming you don’t USE the ashtray for — uhh — ashes.)

  7. HeatherLeigh says:

    possibly a good deodorizer, but changes how I think about coffee. I like the smell in general…ashtray could be OK. Still a bit weird in the airplane "head". In this one case, I hope they don’t recycle.

  8. Jonathan says:

    Did some searches on the internet and it turns out that coffee, due to its porous nature is a good odor absorbent. You can use it to rid smells, including putting a little inside your car vents. Never thought of it that way, so you learn something new everyday.

    Note: consider why you should keep your beans in sealed containers, since it will absorb some of the smells in the area it’s kept. Food, err coffee for thought.

  9. Heather Hamilton makes an odd discovery.

  10. kbiel says:

    In my highschool days, I worked in a car dealership’s service department. When we were faced with a stubborn stench in a car, we would place a coffee filter full of coffee grounds wrapped up with a rubber band into the car for a day or two. It not only seemed to mask the smell, but also absorb it. You can do the same trick with an apple cut into halves.

  11. HeatherLeigh says:

    Interesting info. I’ll have to try that if ever something "foul" invades my home (I hope it doesn’t but once my dog got into the garbage and…nevermind).

  12. Miles Archer says:

    The flight attendants also use it to "clean" up smelly messes on the carpets and seats. Air sickness sorts of messes.

    Does it work? I’m not sticking my nose into it.

  13. HeatherLeigh says:

    Miles…gross…and funny!

  14. Brad says:

    There’s a similar technique that cosmetic shops or wine events will use.

    In any place where you might be sniffing different fragrances or wine, they’ll put out some dishes with coffe beans in them (usually whole) – in between "sniffs", you’d smell the beans to kind of reset your sense of smell.

  15. Phylyp says:

    I’ve heard of the de-odorizing properties of coffee beans.

    Also, a few (2-3) roasted coffee beans kept in a house give it a ‘warm’ smell – a technique often used by those attempting to sell their house.

  16. Craig says:

    Hey! I was on an Alaska Airlines flight coming into Seattle earlier that evening! …I may have even used the offending bathroom!

  17. HeatherLeigh says:

    Craig—"used" is better than "caused" I suppose ; )

    So I thought of all of you last week while I was in the Bay Area. I had some spare time before I presented so I stopped off at Peet’s (my favorite chain) for a latte and picked up 2 pounds of Arabian Mocha Jave (yum!). It was a hot day and I left the coffee in my stanky rental car. When I returned it smelled like stanky rental car and coffee, with a slight hint of airline restroom. ; )

  18. David Walker says:

    I asked a flight attendant about a pack of coffee in the bathroom once, and she said they do it all the time. She assured me that they don’t make coffee out of the same filter pack after it has done "bathroom duty".

  19. HeatherLeigh says:

    David-that makes me feel a little better. Still, the mental association is odd.

  20. srini says:

    i have personally experienced this in a number of perfurmery shops. when one has to smell (read test) a number of sample the olfactory senses probably get messed up. the retailers then shove a cup of coffee beans under your nose, since its supposed to nullify (read erase) the previous odors..

    so it is a practical thing and more natural too

  21. rob says:

    I saw a flight attendant offer a pregnant woman a pouch of ground coffee to help her with nausea during a flight.  The pregnant women didn’t yak into my peanuts so I assume that it works.