UA 951 IAD LAX 1715 2002 752 1B was 967 IAD LAX 1800 2040 777 33A I got to the airport a bit early, knowing that the previous flight was wide open. The 6:00 had gone from an old style to a new style 3-cabin, and my decision not to use a regional upgrade on what had been a cabin with plenty of seats had turned out to be foolish. Checking with the elite desk I found that I was 7 on the list for 6 beds, every one of the passengers who had cleared having used an instrument, so said the agent. So the early flight it was. Boarding was an ill-tempered melee, with the crush not dispersing inside as one of the guys in row 6 having an issue with his carryons and not deigning to "step inside your row to let the other passengers reach their seats." I admit that he harriedly apologized to no one in particular as he did whatever he did. Lots of shrill announcements about sitting down as soon as possible so we could achieve an on-time departure, but after that it turned out to be a pretty good-natured cabin crew. Starter: shrimp cocktail - two pretty big firm ones in a not-too-ketchupy sauce. There was a salad of the usual saddish greens and one olive. The dinner of Asian noodles and beef was respectable - a block of actual short rib meat (when they advertised short rib, what came was seldom that), cut from frozen into a rib of exactly the same size as the next one and the last one, then with one corner of mine cut off ... tasted by the cook, or a blob of fat or gristle or freezer burn removed, or what I don't know. We were served relatively late in the flight owing to turbulence, so the thin wheat noodles were very crunchy around the edges, and the accompanying broccoli had lost much of its vegetable identity and smelled more like a primitive chemical warfare weapon. Oddly, neither they nor the noodles was objectionable to taste, and the hoisin-based sauce that the beef came in covered a multitude of sins. Dessert, ice cream sundaes, came from a cart, with nuts, strawberries, caramel, hot fudge, whipped cream, and Maraschino cherries for the choosing. We landed a good half hour early, some of that time as usual taken up with finding a marshal or a gate or something. The Sheraton Gateway is a really easy shuttle ride, and the room, not on the lounge floor but one below, as I am a mere gold, was neat and pretty though rather dated in decor. The bed had a lot in common with a mortuary slab, though, and I didn't sleep long or all that well. Breakfast in the lounge was not a special event. I had a glass of orange juice, a very sweet chocolate chocolate-chip muffin, and a banana.