“In my younger and more vulnerable years, my father gave me some advice that I’ve been turning over in my mind ever since,” wrote F. Scott Fitzgerald.
“Whenever you feel like criticizing anyone,” he told me, “just remember that all the people in this world haven’t had the advantages that you’ve had.”
Now that I’m older, these poignant opening lines from Fitzgerald’s “The Great Gatsby” remain my avuncular North Star, guiding my social intercourse with those consigned by cruel fate to the steerage of middle class.
In truth, when suddenly confronted with those of lesser means, I’m wont to whisper to myself, “What would Jay Gatsby do?”
That exact question leapt to mind recently when my personal assistant Parker interrupted my morning facial to discuss a new mobile app he’d discovered online called Smart Jets.
If Parker is to be trusted (a dubious proposition at best), this app enables one to remotely inspect a private jet’s interior and, if suitable, schedule the aircraft’s use “in real time” (presumably as opposed to the alternative), all from the blessed remove of a mobile phone or device.
My fine young PA was especially smitten by the payment convenience of Smart Jets, which allows one to securely store credit card particulars right in the app. In the future, the vendor apparently plans to offer Smart Dollar loyalty rewards of 1 percent to 5 percent on any funds placed on deposit for impromptu flights to, say, Navodari. Or Tikehau.
While Smart Jets should certainly be commended for its carbon offset program (save the ol’ orb, whatnot), one fears its scheme to one day enable clients to select a scent for their chosen aircraft might criminally clash with the lusty bouquet of a freshly uncorked 2004 Penfolds Block 42 Cabernet ampoule (provided one could get the blasted thing open!).
Smart Jets admits it targets its Gatsby app to customers with a net worth of $30 million, and bravo for them. After all, one must consider the needs of the less fortunate.
As for what Jay Gatsby would do?
I should think that’s obvious: He’d buy a jet.