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Illustration by Vivi Zhu

Flightless Friday announced as latest sustainability initiative

Following the recent unilateral success of Meatless Monday, next comes our university’s newest fruitful initiative — Flightless Friday.

Mar 6, 2023

Glob Trotter, Class of 2024, faced unanticipated obstacles when attempting to visit his long-distance lover: the world, everywhere around him except where he was currently at.
However, when he visited the travel agency’s office last week, he was met with even more disappointment than usual. Rather than giving him a quote for a flight to the wrong country at double the market price, the representative simply told them that as part of the university’s new sustainability effort it was Flightless Friday and they were closed. Had he checked Facebook, the only source of any important policy announcement, he would have known this.
“What is giving me six days to book my flights instead of seven ever going to do for my environmental footprint?” Trotter asked. In fact, his room with the air conditioning set to sixteen degrees probably emitted more carbon than the average passenger airliner or faculty steak dinner. But soon, bigger problems were afoot than students’ vanity trips.
For a seminar on “Effectively Governing An Island for Long-Term Stability”, NYU Abu Dhabi had managed to recruit former UK Prime Minister Liz Truss to lecture in the A6 theater. She would leave England on Friday to take part in an event all weekend. But the communication had not gotten from the travel agency to the highest levels of the university that Flightless Friday was now in effect. Truss showed up at London Heathrow expecting a chauffeur and a first-class Etihad ticket but, much like Trotter’s craved beef bulgogi pizza last Monday, these were nonexistent.
Student trust, proper communication, and logic were lines that could be crossed, but the ability to attract washed-up politicians was not. As Truss sent an email to Vice Chancellor Marinate Pemican, she dropped everything including a few hundred “VERY URGENT” emails before her. Now Flightless Friday was only flightless for the student body, resulting in a net increase in carbon emissions due to the Thursday Movement to take three-day weekends wherever Wizz Air flies until the restriction is lifted. In related news, Wizz Air has added a second Thursday flight from Abu Dhabi to several Balkan destinations amid record breaking demand.
University leadership does not intend to budge on the slogan-heavy approach to sustainability. In an effort to promote Abu Dhabi’s public transportation system, Taxiless Thursday will soon be implemented in front of the Welcome Center. One proposal will surely make students rejoice, however: Testless Tuesday. No NYU Abu Dhabi class will be allowed to administer any examination on a Tuesday, as a result making Thursday the do or die day for Foundations of Science lab rats and computer science majors facing a 95 percent A threshold. No thought was ever given to the new Thursday initiative’s effect — trapping students on campus like lab rats to stress-eat meat to their hearts’ desires.
The stage is set for a Student Government candidate to stand outside in the outdoor air conditioned Palms and campaign on ending slogan-centered approaches to improvement. Regardless of the bureaucratic hurdles they will face, as dedicated student global leaders today do, taking the burgers and planes away seems to be building a one-way road to mass student dissatisfaction.
Ethan Fulton is Satire Columnist. Email him at
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