Had an opportunity to fly this weekend and discovered a few things that seemed to be sacrocentric (can we start using this new non-word? I kind of dig it). Air travel in general is a stressful experience. Between the delays, the security checks, the tight quarters, it can all wear thin on one’s temper. But at what point do people just flat out give up and start being absolute nut jobs? And do they only lose it in the 916?
My wife and I board our plane from Sacramento to Denver. Everything has gone swimmingly so far and I was actually very impressed by the ease in getting to our terminal from the parking lot. However, this ease was quickly worsened when we attempted to find our seats. Now I have to make some assumptions here. That the folks boarding this plane were from the Sacramento area and not making a connecting flight from some other town. I also have to assume that, being a Saturday morning, these folks were not traveling on business and/or were not otherwise anxious to get to where they were going. That is, I was experiencing people at their best.
So we’re boarding the plane and I am carrying an average sized duffle bag. Nothing too impressive that would require checking. During a pause in the action an older man turns to me and says, “If you would just carry your cash in a wallet like normal people you wouldn’t need that bag.” Totally straight faced. No hint of sarcasm or levity. I gave one of those uncomfortable faces like, “good one!”, when I really had no idea what he was talking about. I sit down.
Smooth flight, everything is jake. We land. As we taxi people are starting to shift about and prepare to deboard. What I don’t get and what I think is unique to our fair city is the need for people to stand up and grab their stuff and push forward before the plane has even stopped and the folks in front have exited. You have 150 people just minding their own business for 2 hours and all of a sudden it’s a sprint to the finish line knocking down anyone in your path? And the attitude we got from everyone. You take turns exiting the plane in a single file line. How hard is that? The eye rolling and sighs of frustration were a plenty. And heaven forbid if you should need a moment to grab your luggage from the overhead compartment.
“Fine, go ahead!”
“After you, I guess”
and my favorite with the emphasis on please,
“Please, after you”
I could be making something out of nothing. But on the return flight from Denver, I experienced much the same behavior. I am sure those of you that read this will have experienced similar incidents during travel outside of the River City, but I have to think that unless I was traveling with that gal from Tortillas and her extended family, this was no fluke.