I nestled into the seat at gate 12 with plenty of margin time before my flight back to Grand Rapids. Laptop out, shoes untied, a $19 cup of coffee by my side. A freshly printed Wall Street Journal occupied the seat next to mine, waiting to be read in Gutenberg’s name — not Steve, the other one… Johannes, I think. I found airport seating zen, which is what happens when your temporary mass transit campground site is clearly marked and firmly established. Have you ever noticed how comfortable airport chairs are? Subliminal compensation for the TSA pat down, no doubt.
I was physically comfortable enough to endure the conversational discomfort I was about to overhear. The attendants and pilot for our particular flight gathered in a semicircle right behind me and started shooting the breeze — a fitting thing for people in the airline industry to do, if you think about it. You know, because…airplanes fly… in the breez… forget it.
Anyway, they were waiting for the gate to open so they could hop on the plane and tidy up, start the engines, adjust the mirrors, refill the windshield washer fluid, etc. It wasn’t yet 6am. So bored were they.
You know what conquers boredom? Hilarious observations about passengers. Unfortunately, because of FAA guidelines, I am not permitted to report here what they talked about. I would recommend, however, that the lady who flew to Vegas wearing a sleeveless leather top consider tattoo repair, since your flight attendant noticed and would later wonder “why hasn’t anyone told you that rainbows don’t droop like that?” It was pretty funny, I guess.
But then I wondered: What passenger stories would they share at the next semicircle? Well, hindsight being 20/20, I can only guess what they might say about me following our rather uneventful flight:
“So I said ‘just because the bag of almonds fell off the cart, it doesn’t mean you get them for free, sir.’”
“I’ve never had to actually pry a passenger out of the bathroom before. Almost left him in there.”
“I knew we were dealing with a troublemaker when he asked to try on the oxygen mask just for kicks.”
“He didn’t like my suggestion to put his legs in the overhead compartment. So I blacklisted him.”
Heh. I say let ’em talk. Humans are so interesting. No doubt I’ve already found my way onto some list someplace. I’m just glad the seats are so comfortable.