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Chasing The American Dream

July 14, 2005


More thoughts from 35,000 feet…

Don’t you normally find that the strangest and/or dumbest people are always aboard your plane? Are the 150 or so people on board truly representative of Americans or is my luck extremely bad? Before I plugged in and watched Fever Pitch, here’s what I observed:

I’m a window seat person. I sacrifice the extra legroom for a nice view and a place to lean my head when I sleep. As I’m boarding, I always look far down the rows to see if there is already someone in my row that I’m going to have to climb over. What a delight it is to see that empty row. Such was not the case this time. I got to row 21 and not only were there two guys already there, but one of them was in my window seat 21-A. Normally, the person gives you the head nod like, “you gotta get in here?” But I didn’t get the nod. So I did a quick check of the little diagram on the overhead compartment. Yes, A = window. I must have had a funny look on my face because 21-B asked me if he and his pal were in the right seats? Rather than create a whole big scene, I just said they were fine. So I plopped into 21-C and wondered why the hell two grown men couldn’t understand the little seating map? Oh, forgot to mention the fact that 21-B had the worst B/O and stunk like hell. Tell me, how do people NOT notice they smell so badly?

Then there was a commotion going on with 15-B. It seems he was in the wrong seat and should have been in 15-E which is across the aisle. So the flight attendant asks 15-E for his boarding pass. She looks at it and announces that it’s the same name as 15-E. Will the real Mr. Rodriguez please stand up? 15-B swears he’s not Rodriguez but Ruber. So tell me, 15-B, how do you *not* look at your boarding pass and notice that the wrong name is on there??? And how does the guy get through security with the wrong name? Do these security guys really look at one’s ID or do they go through the motions? The flight attendant panics and tells Ruber to get off the plane. Ruber refuses and we now have ourselves a situation. Several radio calls to security and airline personnel pave the way and, lo and behold, Ruber was able to prove he was Ruber. He stood up and apologized for making us late.

Then we have 20-D (aisle). He must have taken sleeping pills because he was dead as a doornail in his chair. 20-F (window) had to go potty so she repeatedly says, “excuse me, excuse me.” Nothing. 20-D was out cold. She stood there for a good five minutes saying excuse me. Even 21-D tried to awaken 20-D but to no avail. 20-D finally hit the flight attendant button. The flight attendant came and tried the ‘excuse me’ routine, but that still didn’t work. She finally pushed the hell out of him and woke him up. It was definitely a bad hair day for 20-D. Saying he had bed head is a total understatement. He wasn’t embarrassed at all, but poor 20-D was for having stood there being totally ignored.

Aww. Poor 17-C. The old man waited forever to get to the lavatory. On his way back to his seat, I noticed he had an extra passenger attached to him. He was dragging a streamer of toilet paper underneath his shoe and obviously had no clue. I tried hard not to laugh, but after all I just witnessed, I couldn’t help it.

All this within the first 30 minutes of the flight. So tell me, is it my luck or is the norm?


  • I think a little bit of both. Atleast you were able to plop down in a window seat rather than be stuck in the middle.

    By Blogger Elle, at 2:25 PM, July 14, 2005  

  • Sometimes you have to roll with it and enjoy the little quirks that you're handed in life. After all it does make for an interesting time.

    By Blogger Ash, at 5:14 PM, July 14, 2005  

  • It's pretty much the norm anymore. I'm flying today, too (assuming the weather clears in Austin and Dallas), so I hope I have such entertainment on my flights! :)

    By Blogger Denise, at 6:42 PM, July 14, 2005  

  • Oh, it's the norm. At least you didn't have any fights. I got into it with a guy behind me who didn't want me to put my seat back. This was just last week. I tried to put the seat back & he just slammed it back at me. Needless to say, I didn't let it go.

    By Blogger M, at 8:11 PM, July 14, 2005  

  • A few years ago, coming back from visiting my dad in the hospital in Michigan on Xmas Eve, I had the seatmate from hell. It was a plane that had two seats on each side. I got the window. Dismay as the plane fills up and then this guy sits down next to me. Not only is he drunk as a skunk (and smells like it) but he yaps away while violating my personal space buble- about his martial problems, about how he is a pediatric oncologist (sad job, I see why he might drink), about how he is related on his wife's side to John Paul DeJoria (of the Paul Mitchell hair care line) who has a home in RI.

    Bad right? It gets worse. He falls asleep in his aisle seat. His drink somehow spills all over the floor and near my stuff under the seat. He's alseep. And snoring lightly. And then in his drunken sleep somehow ends up cuddling up to my shoulder. Ick. The flight attendants kept passing by and giving me sympathetic looks ("poor girl, that drunk passed out on her").
    Thank goodness for that bumpy landing or I think he never woould've woken up. I could not get up the jetway fast enough.

    By Blogger Lyss, at 9:12 PM, July 14, 2005  

  • Have you ever watched that airplane TV show? It's a reality TV show based on problems that Southwest Airlines encounters on a daily basis. It's pretty hilarious and amazing at how stupid some passengers really are. So, I would think that your flight must be the 'norm.'

    My father worked in the airline industry for over 30 years and I flew a lot growing up.....I wouldn't know where to begin to describe some of the shit I have seen.

    Glad your home safe & sound :-)

    By Blogger catsteevens, at 9:17 AM, July 15, 2005  

  • It's the norm. People are idiots.

    By Blogger Emily, at 4:48 PM, July 15, 2005  

  • I always wonder that too... are these people representative of Americans? I hope not. Don't worry, there are some of us good, high quality people out there, because obviously all of us on here have ridden a plane at some point in our lives :)

    By Blogger girl from florida, at 6:32 PM, July 17, 2005  

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