Frequent fliers beware: cutting the line and limits to the kindness of strangers

On a less-serious note for any of you pharma road warriors who fly across the world twice a week (or who wonder where those hundreds of thousands of Harvard tuition dollars go). On your second security checkpoint line, why not try out a limited version of an experiment that Harvard Business School professor Felix Oberholzer-Gee recently wrote up in "A Market for Time: Fairness and Efficiency in Waiting Lines."  He offered to pay people ahead of him on an airport line $20 for the opportunity to move ahead of them.  Surprisingly, most agreed, and then nobly refused payment, sensing that his need must be urgent. (Surprise: Younger people likely to be students eagerly pocketed the money.) Warning: attempt this a second time in the same line and you may spend the night in the local hospital.  Interesting research, and queuing is a very interesting science (statistically).  Still, on some basic level, it reminds me of the types of projects that Senator William Proxmire used to award with "Golden Fleeces."  Happy travels. -AMS