Saturday, March 29, 2008

Air Sick Lesson 4 Part 2 / Gorillas and the Arm Rest

Some of us have invisible signs on our foreheads that say a variety of things like, “please give me the crappiest table in the restaurant” or “I know there are 1000 cars in your lot but would you please put in me another tan Ford Taurus”. I have read stories in magazines about people who get seated next to a long, lean, leggy supermodel on a flight and have a romantic connection leading to a lusty liaison in some alpine villa. Well the sign I have on my head is “if you weigh over 400 pounds and smell like micro waved herring, please sit next to me”. I have long given up hope of having the seat next to me empty, now I spend the boarding process in a series of prayers to various gods to please, please, please don’t let that be the guy or gal sitting next to me as I watch sasquatch walking down the aisle.

This wouldn’t be so bad if there was some time of barrier separating you from the person next to you other then an arm rest which measure….I shit you not…2 ½” and that is for both of you to share. That tiny little arm rest is the only thing that defines your personal space from your isle mates. There is wars waged everyday in the skies above the world for that small piece of property. Since this is the only neutral ground, the utilization of the arm rest depends greatly on the level of détente you establish with your isle mate. The most congenial relationships between seat mates demands that neither actually utilize the arm rest, rather just leveraging pieces of it by defying the structure of your elbow to obtain a rest position that doesn’t cause you Charlie horses.

This state of détente rarely ever happens however and the only options are to surrender your use of the arm rest of begin a 2 hour battle of arms to establish dominance on this small battleground. It’s really a sad thing to watch two adults engaged in the behavior and once again takes us back to 4th grade when you battled the kid next to you on the school bus for the window.

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