Continued from HERE/
As the flight attendant frantically asks people for my seat solace in the exit row my hope diminishes. There is a lot of shaking-of-head going on until… she looks up excitedly, and feverishly waves at me to come to her! As I
start to unbuckle and squirm out of the window seat, she runs back and says, “never mind, I’m sorry.”
As she goes through 5 minutes later, doing her last check, she says with a sparkle in her eye, “But.. I owe you a drink.”
I think about how I can pretend to spill my free drinks all over the gorilla and her friend.
This is the low point, and the little old Indian woman can sense it. She says, “Ok, let’s switch seats.” She must have felt bad enough for me at that point. “Oh thank you, so much” I say as I hurriedly unbuckle and move away
from the gorilla.
5 minutes after take off, when the appropriate time to put your seat back is given, the Amazon in the middle jams her seat back… and soon thereafter, so does the short woman now in front of me! Conspicuously absent
from the seatback party is the gorilla. In fact she doesn’t put it back for the first half of the flight, as she goes in and out of sleep and feverish laughter.
For the first hour of the flight I pretend to read my magazine while the Amazon, gorilla and portly little turd in front of me yuck it up. I’m not sure if I’ve ever been madder in my life, and the woman in front of me is now my biggest enemy.
It’s impossible to concentrate.
I spend most of the 6 hour flight either a) plotting how I can most effectively knee the woman in front of me in the back, and b) kneeing the woman in front of me in the back. The greatest joy I had was getting up to go to the bathroom, which I did every 15 minutes whether I had to go or not.
My technique was flawless as I positioned my right leg down and thrust up into what I was hoping would be the small of her portly little back/muffin top. It was a fluid motion that could plausibly be done because I couldn’t get out of the seat. Even though on regular flight, I would have no problem getting out of my seat.
I would always look away, and I’m pretty sure I hurt her a couple of times, but she didn’t put her seat up until directed to on the descent to Seattle.
Every time I kneed her, her head would bounce semi-viciously. Sometimes she’d be disgruntled, sometimes she would look hurt or sad, but she was short, and could never actually look at me without looking up behind her, or peering through the space between her and the Amazon – which she never did. Regularly, she’d look at the Amazon, who would just shrug and give her a look that said sorry.
The old man literally never did a single thing on the entire flight but get up once to go to the bathroom. Occasionally he would look at me earnestly and ask, “did you find your seat belt?” He had grandfatherly warmth and the breath of a someone who eats pickle and cheese sandwiches.
At most points I couldn’t tell if he sided with me, or just felt like I was a whiner who hadn’t lived through the
depression, but, he offered me his hamburger. I declined; my own Continental hamburger gave me plenty of burps that I could strategically aim into crevices of the row ahead of me.
Eventually I got over it, like, when I landed and was able to recount my crybaby story to Maggie.