Wednesday, July 6, 2011

The Extremely Friendly Skies

I always think that coming back from vacation will leave me refreshed and energized; still basking in the glow of recently experienced vacation bliss. But instead, I always come back and I'm very grumpy. Work is lame. My boss asked me how to spell "original" this morning. We're out of food. I have to do laundry. My khakis are still offensive. I miss my fambly.Will somebody please get me a waaaaaamburger and some french cries, STAT.

But really, coming back from vacation hasn't been all bad. I've been sleeping mostly on a couch for the last 2 1/2 weeks, and I am oh so happy to be back in my own bed. With my own pillow and my own husband and my own dog sleeping at the foot of said bed. I sleep more soundly with the cacauphony of snoring and grunting eminating from my 2 hairy roommates. I think that I have finally removed the last of the sand that made residence inside of my ears and nostrils. It is a bittersweet feeling. Everytime I found sand in various body parts, I felt like I was still at the ocean. Luckily, there is enough sand in my suitcase and swimsuits, the memory will never die. Also? I came home to roasted red pepper hummus in the fridge, and shut the front door, that stuff is dang good. It is the best thing that's happened to me this week.
Scratch that, finding 20 bucks on the floor at the airport is the best thing that happened to me this week.
Scratch that again, reuniting with my husband and scarfing down giant Freebirds burritos together after a long day of traveling and starving is the best thing.

And now, here comes a story about a very strange man I met on the plane while flying here. I flew Southwest, and I was in the A group, so I chose a window seat towards the front of the plane. Shortly after I sat down, a 20-something year old guy comes and sits in the middle seat right next to me, which is strange, beacuse there were still plenty of more desirable window and aisle seats available up front. As a member of the female gender, I will objectively state that he was an attractive man, but as I am married and blind to those sorts of things, I did not really notice. He was wearing nice clothes and I'm sure if I'd asked him, he would have rated himself a definite 10. It was apparent that he thought he was hot stuff. He sat down and stared at me, and I pretended to be engrossed in the current issue of SkyMall (Ha! There was no pretending, I love Skymall and was probably mulling over a Hermione's Time Turner Necklace Authentic Replica purchase.) Oblivious to my Skymall fixation, my seat mate decides to initiate some small talk.
Homeboy in the seat next to me:Where are you going?
Amy: San Antonio
Homeboy: Me too!
Amy: ....
Homeboy: And you're flying out of Alabama?
Amy:... Yes...
Homeboy: Me too!! (I could tell that this conversation was headed in a scholarly direction, now that we had established that our plane was departing and arriving at the same location.)

Still hoping for more small talk fodder, he looks down at my bag, which happens to be a laptop bag I stole from Cary, who got it at the Air Force Academy. He then asks, "Do you work at the White House?" To which I flirtaciously reply, "No." Well it must have been a flirtacious response, because he took that reply as an invitation to become BFFs for the rest of the flight. He asked where I got the bag, and I informed him that it is my husband's bag and I borrowed it from my husband because my husband went to the Air Force Academy and then graduated and now he's my husband and oh did I mention that I have a husband?

He paused briefly to consider this and then asked about my husband and how long we'd been married. I told him we'd been married for a year, to which he replied, "Oh, so it's not very serious, then?" I couldn't even think of a response. He moved on to the topic of Cary being in the Air Force. "So you're husband is gone all of the time, huh? Do you ever see him?" It was like he wanted me to say "Oh yes, I'm sort of married, but he's gone a lot, you're hot, and I'm a total floozy so don't even worry about that little detail."

The flight attendant stood up to explain the intricacies of an airplane seatbelt and what to do should a water evacuation become necessary (which, really, in a flight from Alabama to Texas, I feel like the pilot would have to be aiming for a body of water in order for that to happen, but that really is neither here nor there) and my seat mate continued to talk to me, even though I couldn't hear a word of what he was saying. We took off and I dug through my backpack to pull out a magazine and my iPod. Suddenly he grabbed for his barf bag and ruslted all around. I looked over at him, mostly to make sure none of my belongings were in the barf zone, when he pulled out his gum and stuck it in the barf bag. He just thought this was an absolute riot. "Hahaha! I scared you! You thought I was going to barf! Hahaha!"

After that hilarious joke, I decided that I was pretty much done entertaining this weirdo and I dove deep into my People magazine, thinking that he would not have any interest in the most recent Bachelor couple, but this proved to be an ineffective strategy. He peered over my shoulder, pointing at pictures and making commentary. If I turned the page on an article without reading it, he'd say "Wait, I want to read that article!" I decided I would just give him the magazine and pull out another one. He took the magazine and then proceeded to show me all of the pictures and tell me how my hair looks just like that girl's hair and he likes ponytails and have I ever thought of cutting my hair shorter?

Eventually he seemed to notice that I was not enjoying this little reading group he ycreated and he shut up for a few glorious moments. But then suddenly he blurted out:
Weirdo: "What kind of mattress do you and your husband have?"
Amy: "Um... the kind that you sleep on."
Weirdo: "What brand is it? What size?"
Amy: (insert extremely perplexed/annoyed/creeped out facial expression here)
Weirdo: "I'm only asking because I have a high position at Mattress Firm and I'd love to help you and your husband pick out a great mattress."
Amy: "Are you trying to schmooze me so I'll buy a mattress from you??"
Weirdo: "No!! I'm not even a sales guy. I work for the guy who works for the CEO. I don't get any sort of commission, I just really think we have the best mattresses and I want to help a cool girl I met on the plane!  (He stares at me anticipatedly, thinking I will suddenly swoon knowing that I'm sitting next to the assistant-to-the-assistant-to-the-CEO)
Amy: "I think we're good."
Weirdo: "No, really, do you like your mattress firm? Soft? Do you want one that's adjustable?"
Amy: "We like our mattress. We're fine."
Weirdo: "I'm just really passionate about what I do and my company."
Amy: "Saving the world, one mattress at a time."
Weirdo: "It's a pretty great job."

This continued on and on and on. He kept name-dropping all of these corporate big wigs that I've never heard of or care about and how he always plays golf with them. He detailed his entire career plan, and how he was going to be the CEO before he was 35. I was not even hiding the fact that I was very done with this conversation. Eventually he ends that little gambit and strikes up a new conversation by thrusting his cell phone screen towards me and showing me pictures of his sister's expensive pet cat that plays fetch. It was truly riveting.

Thankfully, the flight was drawing to a close. He said that he wanted to keep in touch, and asked if he could write down my name so he could add me on facebook. I pretended to be distracted with getting my bag out from under my seat. Still refusing to accept any sort of hint that I was not interested in being lifetime buddies, he told me how to spell his name so that he could find me on facebook. He had some super long greek last name, and asked if I was going to write it down so I could remember it and look him up. After I failed to do this, he put one of his business cards in my hand and asked me to keep in touch, but the only thing his business card kept in touch with was the trash can.

Suffice it to say, it was weird flight.


  1. My photography teacher used to keep earbuds on at all times. Sometimes, they'd just trail into his shirt into nothing at all. But it kept people from chatting with him while he was shooting.

  2. Bahahaha this is hilarious. You make me laugh Amy

  3. Amy. We seriously read this and died laughing. This part, "I told him we'd been married for a year, to which he replied, "Oh, so it's not very serious, then?" made us laugh especially hard. Lol. I wish I could have been the flight attendant to watch this terribly awkward conversation that lasted... how long? 2-3 hours? And your friend, Matt (1st comment), makes a good point. Put on the earphones before hand to avoid an awkward convo from even starting. Works like a charm, and if you ignore them, and they realize you have buds in, you don't have to pretend like you heard them and didn't want to talk. :-) Miss your face! When does Cary track again? Hope you guys get helos, then we can party... before we temporarily move to Sacramento.

  4. good grief. there are some seriously crazy people out there. one time i was writing a letter to my (then) boyfriend on a plane. we had to wait to taxi out because airforce one was coming in, and the lady next to me got really mad because she hated the president (then pres. bush). so i got on my soapbox in my letter and wrote that i thought people needed to show some respect for the office, whether they liked him or not.

    apparently she was reading as i was writing, and she looked at me and said, "do we have a problem?" seriously? so our flight turned into a 2-1/2 hour long political/ethical debate. i was 19. she was about 45.

    but still, you take the cake. i agree with makamae - the "not very serious" thing kills me. thanks for putting up with my super long comments. i need friends:)

  5. Oh.My.Gosh! My cheeks hurt from laughing so hard, Amy! I really feel for you - there are so many weirdos on planes these days. But they do make for some amazingly awesome (and full of cringing) stories. You handled it marvelously!