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Monday, April 26, 2010

A Smelly Flight...

I used to enjoy traveling every few months for work, but to be honest, airline seats are like the seats at the AT&T Center; not made for those of us over 12 years old. I guess I kid a lot about the fact that I am a heavy fellow, but really, I’m not hugely obese requiring a seat belt extender or the assistance of flight crew with a crow bar to wedge me into my seat; I just have a beer gut – from all the hamburgers I eat.

When I get on a plane, my goal is to have a thin person sitting next to me. It isn’t that I spill over into the next seat, but I’m hoping to avoid a person that will spill over into mine. So when I got onto my flight from San Antonio to Detroit (always a destination of concern considering the propensity for underwear bombers) I was at first relieved to find a very thin woman seated next to me. Unfortunately, the nice young lady had an even thinner 18 month old sitting on her lap. When I use the phrase, “You have got to be shitting me”, I assure you; there is good cause. Kids at that age do two things: Scream and poop.

I don’t talk to people on planes, mostly due to the fact that I don’t talk to people in public unless I know them, and then only if it is awkward not to, but also because once the airplane starts, my hearing simply goes away. Those announcements about the exit rows? Can’t hear a word of it.

But I did make an exception seeing that the little child next to me had a little stuffed bear wearing an Air Force flight suit. I conversed long enough to learn that the child’s father was in training at Lackland and he would be an aircrew member. I offered that my kids were both in the Air Force and that was pretty much when my hearing began to fade.

It is a funny thing about the senses. It seems that as one of our senses leaves us, another becomes more sensitive. So at about ten or eleven thousand feet, that was when I couldn’t hear it, but I could smell that the kid next to me had crapped his pants. Interestingly, I’m guessing the lady that the child was sitting on could have heard a pin drop, because she obviously didn’t recognize the weight, the feel or most obviously, the impressive stench of her son’s nasty diaper. My God, did she feed the kid several bean and chorizo tacos for breakfast?

When my eyes stopped watering, I began to read a book (I’m trying to finish Camille Paglia’s Sex, Art, and American Culture, which I think I have been reading on and off for six months). I kept thinking that the minute the Captain turned off the Fasten Seat belt sign; the mom would go take care of a little diaper action. Then I started to worry that she might change the offending shit-sack on the tray table. Yikes! I lost my place in the book several times contemplating such an action. In the end, the mother simply rocked the kid to sleep and I guess I adjusted to the smell.

As we were approaching Detroit, the child began to stir and this basically rustled the diaper and a new wave of kid poop smell. Yuck. In a way, I was a victim of an underwear bomber, but I guess in this case, it wasn’t exactly the kind I expected.

I’ve been through Detroit several times, but this was the first time I went through the tunnel between concourses. I arrived in Concourse A but departed from Concourse C. This tunnel provides a light and music show as you stroll through. Loved it!

The flight to Dayton had the makings for a bad, bad situation. I was seated next to a guy bigger than me. The man was not fat per se, just huge in the broad shoulder sense. Seriously, I was literally leaning into the aisle because his shoulders extended 6 inches into my side of the armrest. I know what you are thinking; tell that fat ass to get over, but the man was easily in his late 60’s, probably a former member of the NFL and it was obvious that he was just as uncomfortable as I was.

I contemplated a fake heart attack. Hey, it could happen given the number of burgers I eat. As luck would have it, the waitress on our flight recognized the discomfort in our row of seats and she asked me if I would like to move to an empty row toward the rear of the plane. Hell, yes!

Imagine going from the worst possible flight ever, to the most comfortable. Okay, it wasn’t First Class, but I did have my own row.

Unfortunately, my good luck ended upon arrival in Dayton where the plane arrived a full half-hour ahead of schedule, but without any luggage!

At least it smelled okay.

Have you had a smelly flight or an overflowing seat assignment? Leave a comment won't you?



hahaah..sorry..but that cracked me up..

Sabra said...

I did wind up nursing my youngest daughter (then slightly under a year old) pretty much the entire six-hour flight from Honolulu to Los Angeles, as every time I tried putting her in her own seat, she started to howl. OK, it was only twice I tried putting her down. I didn't want to listen to her any more than anyone else did.

I can't imagine making my kid sit in its own poo for an entire airplane ride. Those disposables are one-use-only. Hope she had to deal with a massive cleanup!

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San Antonio, TX, United States
I love to observe the odd things happening around me as I go about my day. I especially like it when I can get a picture of people being themselves. Here, I attempt to report the various people and events I have encountered in my neighborhood, and my city. I'd also love to hear from you. Feel free to e-mail your experiences and photos of life in San Antonio.

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