During a trip from California to New York, it didn't help that my connecting flight from Houston was delayed twice because of mechanical problems. Then, after we were airborn, I noticed the lights began flickering. I mentioned this to a flight attendant. "I'll take care of it," she said. Moments later the lights went out. Clearly she had solved the problem by turning off all the lights. A passenger across the aisle who had been watching me leaned over and said, "Whatever you do, please don't ask about the engines."