Flight from Chicago to Denver yesterday morning. Shoehorned into row 32 of a 767 Cattleliner – one of the WORST for legroom.
In front of me is a short woman of some sort. All i can see are nicely manicured nails on a feminine hand against the window before take off, and wisps of a few strands of dark hair peeking above the headrest in front of me.
Yay. Short chicks rarely recline the seatback so no need for me to fish out my Knee Defender set from my backpack.
Tactical error. As you have certainly guessed by now, Shorty McFuckyou slammed her seat back before we had leveled off out of O’Hare, pushing my seatback tray into my gut. This led to a rather angry closing of my tray, along with a few shoves to push her seat up enough for me to stow the SkyMall catalog back into the pocket.
Rather than do the professional, adult thing, and ask her to straighten her seat a little to allow me breathing room, i proceeded to tuck in for a nap – with one of my knees wedged against the back of her seat. With every shift or adjustment i made, she got a nice jolt from behind.
Mature? You betcha. But this is life on the road. And it’s sometimes a full contact sport. We do what we need to do to balance the need for public order and civility, and the need to keep our aggravation from leaking out of our bodies in the form of aggressive acts delivered onto the faces of fellow travelers.
This is not a “fun” trip. This is work. i’m along for the ride as the “management like object”. Show we care, learn what our folks are up to, meet their collaborators. Literally, i am “meat in a seat”.
My travelmates? Two “nice” colleagues. One older and seasoned. One younger and enthusiastic about life, the universe and everything i used to care about. The elder gent has done a nice job of logistics – i don’t need to worry about driving, logistics, maps, meeting locations, etc.
Meat in a seat. Getting paid. While i was playing the “I’ve Got The Armrest, Motherfucker” game with a large, odorous gentleman on my flight this evening, i calculated the amount of time i’ve spent on my ass so far on this trip.
Day 1 – total time on ass: 8 1/2 hours (4 hour meeting)
Day 2 – total time on ass: 11 1/2 hours (3 hour meeting)
Projected Day 3 – total time on ass 20 hours (8 hour meeting plus transcontinental red-eye flight to get me home early on Day 4)
So the next time i get a cushy, “fun” business trip – somewhere lush, exotic and populated with my Dawg Boy posse, i am going to remember this one. And check my guilt at the first airport gate…