Northwest/Memphis Adventure: Part I | 10/17/07
Since I had two very different experiences yesterday I'll start by telling the funnier one, my flight from Detroit to Memphis. I'll save the one where me, along with about 250 other Northwest passengers were stranded at one of three Holiday Inns in Memphis for the night.
I call this "The Sexfecta" since trifecta does not adequately cover the people sitting around me on the longest flight ever. I am center-square Paul Lynde but instead of being flanked by celebrities, I am surrounded by "The Sexfecta"--ALL the people you don't want to be next to on a plane.
Starting in the upper-left corner, we have the raving drunk. He explained to the flight attendant how to make a Bloody Mary at least a dozen times and then almost got physically violent when he had to be cut off. I'm going to pass over the guy directly in front of me and save him for last. The "?" was actually an old Asian woman who spoke no English but she didn't cause any trouble.
To my direct left was The Talker. I don't mind sitting next to someone who likes to talk but this woman kept talking about the book she was reading Absolutely American as if I were reading it with her. Naturally her overhead light didn't work so I kindly let her keep mine on which apparently is on par with proposing marriage in her part of the country. At one point she asked me to read to her and I said no. Enough of her.
To my right was your stereotypical overweight, smelly hippie girl. In a cruel turn of events I would later find out she was a Northwest employee and a Memphis native. She, like everyone in this group, was not mindful of the invisible line separating our seats. I had only physical interaction with her until the plane landed when she offered to "get up fast" for me. Thanks.
The lower-left square was occupied by Crying Baby and no amount of Dora the Explorer, turned at Volume 11, could calm her. Seated next to her was her mother, and to her left the father, a tattooed Clemson fan. They struck me as the kind of couple that might have met their freshman year of college: she was experiencing her first year away from home, wanted to get with a "bad" boy. In my fantasy he was a college drop-out and passed him time by having tribal symbols tattooed onto his arms. Uh oh! Now there's a baby and you're both stuck. Sure you're both like 19, uneducated and woefully unhappy with each other but that's what I'd expect from Clemson fans.
Ok, back to the guy sitting directly in front of me. He is old and likely a vet, which he announced proudly with his hat. Within the first two minutes his chair was already back in my lap and he had his hands folded behind his head to ensure I would have no view. His hands smelled like Generic Old Person and he had a large band-aid over his left index finger. Because I had literally no room between him and the 600 lb girl next to me, I couldn't get to my laptop to pass the time. I spent the first two hours starting blankly ahead until, finally, it was time for soda. I had been looking forward to my Pepsi for the entire ride simply because I had nothing else. I thought my luck was finally changing when I was handed a cup full of ice AND a full can. Awesome. Trying to get the best bang for my buck with the ice I poured about 90% of the can in. By this point I had taken out the food tray and was doing my best to appreciate my full Pepsi. It was at this moment that Old Guy removed his hat, scratched his head, and sent quite literally an avalanche of dandruff into my Pepsi.
Tomorrow...the part of my day that didn't completely suck.