Do I exist?
Its one thing to travel, but when you spend so much time in an airplane and airports by yourself, you are forced to eventually notice that no one really looks at you. They all just sort of look through you. Its like you’re a ghost, and I’m starting to question if I exist.
-Even the flight attendants. I waited for longer than the acceptable 3.7 second waiting period to respond to the ‘beverage’ query, and got the ‘impatient puff’ type sigh and as she asked again. The reason I waited was because she wasn’t even looking at me, and I thought she was starting from the window side, not the aisle side. But, I guess since I received the ‘impatient puff’ sigh, I am a total asshole. Give me a vodka and arsenic please.
I should probably find a new gig, but this one pays. I fucking hate airplanes. I like to move, I like to go, but what happened to reasonable comfort? And why do I always get stuck next to the retired guy who’s on his way to buy a boat, or a car, or something expensive, who feels the need to explain the stock market to me and inform me that while my finger doesn’t have a ring on it now, it will. I just need to start by not being on an airplane all the time and proving I’m able to be at home and available for real commitment.
Fuck you, dude. There’s a reason you’re divorced. Or about to be. There’s a reason your wife isn’t sitting where I am. There’s a reason you need to get the hell away and has to purchase some sort of a penis proving, vroom-vroom, Oooh-awwww, lookit-me-I’m-a-Big-Man toy that requires an airplane to get to. Don’t tell me about commitment.
I admit I have a habit of checking people out on planes and wondering what their stories are. What their biggest worry is at the moment. What helps them sleep at night, what keeps them awake. What lullabies pop into their heads when holding a baby, and what they would wear to their mother’s funeral. Whether or not they’d have people cake topper figures on their wedding cake, or if they did. Or if they ever got married, or if they ever had an affair. Or if they were on their way to have an affair and whether or not they actually know it.
I suppose I’ll keep up with this for a little while longer. After all, I did have some affirmation this morning. It kept me going. I was getting ready to catch this flight, the noon out of Portland to NY, but had some time to kill. I heard Sinatra and followed the music to find a Sinatra impersonator singing to recorded band pieces. It was ten o’clock in the morning and the guy was wearing a full on tux. I sat on a bench on the side of the lobby and pulled out my planner. I was deep in concentration when I heard “And how about a’you, sweetheart? What’s your favorite Sinatra tune?”
I looked around and saw that absolutely no one was there. Just a steady rush of people flowing by, looking right through him just as they did me. And at that moment, even though I hate people, I felt….. humanity. I felt- something. I was upset I didn’t exist in today’s world save for my name in flight rosters and in my ridiculous planner, but him. He got up this morning, middle aged and tired, and put on a fucking tuxedo. He drove himself to the airport with a CD of a backing band, and he sang. Regadless of anyone listening, he sang.
And now he was looking at me. Not through me. But at me. And he was asking me what my favorite Sinatra tune was.
As a matter of fact, I have several. But I felt the need to lie. My absolute favorite Sinatra tune of all time would have to be “The Best is Yet to Come.”
Though, for some reason I feel that is privelaged information. I’ll spew it to anonymities on the internet, but I’ll not share it with a man who loves Sinatra so much, he feels the need to dress as him in the morning on a week day and sing to strangers.
So I gave him another tune, and he sang it. Not for me, but to me.
And then it happened.
I was home sick. A little tear even, maybe.
After he was done, I nodded, smiled, got up, and ran to my gate.
And now I’m here. On another plane. I’ll be on the East coast soon, and then I’ll break out my east coast watch. I’ll also break out my East Coast clothes and my East Coast attitude. Seems as though I’m already on my way. Yeah, they’re all so busy there. You’re SO BUSY. YOU’RE SO IMPORTANT.
Wi-Fi in the sky. Genius.
Actually, I think ‘genius’ is the wrong word to say when commenting on this brilliant new luxury. I think the phrase should be “duh.” …but also accompanied by “but thank you, finally.”
Because really- what is wi-fi? Wireless internet? Our planet is blanketed by these waves and transmissions and they JUST now figured out how to put them in planes? Or they just decided the portion of the population that wasn’t actually Richard Branson deserved to use this technology? Yeah. Well. Whatever. I’m enjoying it now. So-
Wi-Fi in the Sky. Duh. But thank you. Finally.
Do I exist?
“And that’s for the cute brunette in the front row. Don’t cry, dollface. We’ll meet again.”
I guess I do.
Nice to meet you.