Wednesday, February 9, 2005

Laura in Atlanta

Brian’s tray-table takes a surprising plunge from its full upright position. Luckily he has finished his apple juice, so neither the Zara shirt nor my baby blue leather jacket are soiled. In order to be travel-savvy, we’ve read’s latest information before departing. We are in the exit row, so we might need to use this information:
If you are sprayed with an unknown substance, stand and think about a cool design for a new tattoo.

Brian is reading Men’s Health magazine, and I’m reading emails. He reads this because of the gorgeous men. Correction. I look at the gorgeous men while he “learns about health, fitness and fashion.” I started with 41 unread messages, am now up to 42. I’m not sure how, but email reading is not going as planned.

I thought I was prepared to help with emergency maneuvers if required, being seated in the emergency exit row. However, as the plane turns, sun shines into the window, I’m blinded, and flail about while trying to reach the window cover to protect my eyes. It’s like walking into a door that clearly says: “Pull”.

We have begun our initial descent and I’ve read only 1 day’s worth of email. Brian, on the other hand, is on page 40 of his hot man magazine.

The second flight has finished boarding, and a man in a split-pea green shirt starts making difficult requests to the flight attendant. Since Brian and I are over 6 hours late, we take control of the situation. I get the man in a head-lock and Brian helps topple him into the seat row. With a clever use of the arm-rest and a dual seatbelt maneuver, the man is trapped and take-off is not further delayed. All the while, Brian and I still look stylish next to split-pea green.

Brian nearly has a hissy fit when he realizes I’ve mistakenly used his seatbelt, but manages to stay calm due to fear of his character having too many flaws in my novel.

The flight attendant explains the emergency procedures: “Do not initiate an emergency exit unless told to do so by myself or another crew member. We’ve had people see something funny outside and get out onto the wings unnecessarily.” Once again, stupid people are responsible for my safety.

You should not wear heavy metal accessories while travelling. Accessorizing was very traumatic to a small child had to take off his suspenders to get through the metal detector.
A grown son squishes his face between the seats to talk to his mother in the row in front. He is older and married, but evidently prefers his mother to his wife. In this excitement, she realizes she’s missing her large gaudy brooch. While she should have been elated, she gets the flight attendant to announce the loss, only to find the pin under her large, gaudy ass. Keep the accessories at home.

The man in front of us has just sneezed 14 times consecutively, which I expect will cause brain damage. Similarly, Brian is getting brain damage by reformatting Powerpoint slides.

Waiting for the flight home, Brian smells like airplane fumes, and while he’s working on slides I’m reading People en Español. To practice my pronunciation, I read out loud, which yields numerous Silverstone threats but nothing more. I have learned: grey hairs = canas and gotear = to drip. This from a hair dye ad.

A woman walks stocking-footed, carrying her boots in her hand. Brian swears at his charts, though maybe he’s upset by her feet. Obviously, the woman is not from New York or Paris. Brian thinks I should dye my hair 6RB form L’Oréal. Clearly, his opinions are inhibiting my people watching.

Our flight is delayed until 8:20, yet due to confusion with military time, the board says 21:26. While the delay may indeed be infinite, the cookies Brian bought alleviate my pain. I am trying to drink water form a squirt spout, which is like walking through rain without an umbrella.

There is a woman with a three piece baby pink travel suit. Due to lost luggage, I was forced to buy a fuchsia sweater at Wal-mart. Editor’s note: the word fuchsia is Brian’s. Brian suggests I’m jealous of the three piece travel suit. I’m not in tune with my emotions enough to know.
There is a plane waiting, but it may be still sitting there from the previous departure at gate E29, 45 minutes ago. I’d like a hairbrush. Or to win a trip to Fiji. The captain has arrived to the gate. It seems that, coupled with the waiting plane, we have the right ingredients for travel, yet my butt remains grounded.

Update: cough is worse, water continues to spill, and Brian takes abuse as a result. Correction, I hit Brian due to excitement of captain’s boarding awaiting aircraft. Concerned it’s the Toronto flight. Brian kicks his feet while he coughs.

Our Canadian military wears green camouflage in the desert. A man waiting at gate E29 wears beige camouflage. Was there just a major distribution problem? Departure time on the screen is now in the past. Hopefully Delta has the technology to board & depart 5 minutes ago.

Continued attempts at the squirt spout, this time water all over my face. Brian narrowly avoids a cookie-related hissy fit.
Update: the pink suit is complemented by a bag with fruit pictures all over it, a pink scarf, white shoes & socks and a straw hat.

I momentarily took over Brian’s computer today, and on his behalf responded to an email from Rob Casey. I suggested on Brian’s behalf that they best meet at 2:30 am, moving their relationship from professional to personal. When Brian got back to his computer, an instant message said: “I don’t think you’d want to see me in my jammies, not pretty”. Yet strangely, Brian does not find this unusual. I’ve begun to wonder about the true nature of Brian and Rob’s relationship.

While discussing the past days’ events, Brian and I assess whether we smell like cigar smoke by smelling each other’s leather jacket sleeves. A man (who eludes my ridicule by looking normal) gives us a look as we’re sniffing, and we cower at the thought of his trip report.