We were on our way to LAX with aspirations of sweet-talking our way into an upgrade. We're flying on mileage tickets, and got charged for the amount equivalent to a first class ticket. But when we booked, the LAX-Zurich leg did not have first class or biz class availability. So we showed up at the airport a good three hours early try and plead our way out of coach.
Normally I'm really good at this kind of thing - my mom worked for American Airlines for 30+ years, and she taught me the way to handle airline employees. However, this ticket agent was having none of it, so we'll be in 48E and 48G on a stinking Airbus. In fact the flight is so full they had signs up asking for volunteers to DOWNGRADE to coach from business.
Fortunately, we were not deterred from enjoying the Star Alliance lounge where we can sample many liquors, Thai beers, fried rice, cheese and crackers, and other foods that are way too fancy for any domestic airline to serve.
However the most disturbing event in the 2 hours we've been on the trip now was this direct quote from Juli as we passed through security: "I don't think I can travel with you like this anymore." Message to Juli's bosses - no more first class flights to Brazil and Russia for her. Next thing you know she'll be checking luggage.