Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Flying in the Fat Suit...again

I am back in San Diego after an incredible three days attending the Erma Bombeck Writer's Workshop.  Amazing time.  Amazing people.  Amazing acceptance of wherever you are as a writer.

If you know me, you know how I am about airplane seating.  If you know anything about the current airline industry, you know my anxiety can only be growing.  Planes are PACKED....each of my four flights this week had a body in each seat.  Ahhhh...this is the actual issue.  It's the bodies...not the seats.  Mine in particular.  I am currently feeling like the Mamma bear body in the baby bear seat.  This chair is toooooooooooo small.  I'm still looking for the airline seat that is jussssst right!  I've never been offered an extender (thankfully) and I still do have some slack on the belt but when I end up in a row with other bodies my size, we get much more up close and personal than any of us are prepared for.

This week consisted of four flights.  San Diego to Chicago, Chicago to Dayton, Dayton to Fort Worth, Fort Worth to San Diego.

San Diego to Dayton
First let me say that flying economy can make you feel like nothing less than cattle.  When they began calling boarding groups...I was number 8.  Seven groups were deemed worthy of boarding the plane prior to me.  I'm assuming that must be some kind of  Price Line punishment.  Most of us in group 8 looked at each other like "You're not independently wealthy either, huh?"  If nothing else, it did bond us as the lower class.

 In my last post, I pleaded with God to seat me next to ten year old twins....He complied.  Not with twins but with one charming ten year old boy....on the small side.  He was a very cool kid - friendly, respectful and only had one slight annoying quality....he had an extremely small bladder.   On the four hour flight, he went to the lavatory exactly....four times.   Each time, he would look curiously at his coke on the lap desk and then turn to me saying "I have to go the bathroom again."  I would grab my cup, take off my headphones, grab his cup, pack up both of our lap desks, step over the armrest and let him head down the aisle. I would then sit, holding everything until he returned and then reverse the process.  This worked like clockwork until I forgot one's amazing how troublesome one small step can be... especially when that step is attached to your head.    I forgot to remove the headphones.  After spinning several times in both directions to release myself, I noticed that at least I was providing entertainment for the rest of the flight.   It reminded me of a Brian Regan video.

On the second flight, life looked good.  There were two seats per row and I was seated next to a trim older man who looked somewhat antisocial but at least had a normal girth.  Unfortunately, his wife was in the row in front of us.  She wanted to sit with him and convinced her seat mate to switch.  This move led to me sitting next to a woman with purple hair, at least 100 pounds on me, and hated life.  I will say no more other than while this flight was only 2 hours long, I now understand the term "from here to eternity".

Dayton to San Diego
The first flight wins as my favorite.  My neighbor was trim, well spoken, interesting and good natured.  We talked the whole way.  She even took a business card with my blog address.  We shared the same name, a respect for our incredible husbands and love of dogs.  Sherri, if you are reading, you may have actually changed my attitude related to flying.   May I just pay you to sit next to me on every flight?

The second flight was uneventful other than having the women in the middle seat refuse to step out to let me in.  She just looked at me and said "I'm small....just climb over."  I replied..."I'm're taking your chances".  I think I hit her in the head with my bag.  I won't say that it was unintentionally.  It may be why she slept the whole way but I did check her breathing a few times.  I know she walked off the plane unassisted.

So home.....I made it.  I will say that I miss being with the people from the conference.  You can't help but smile when you're surrounded by 400 people that love humor.  I will write another blog post about the conference, including my intimate relationship with the waiter that kept bumping my head with his butt.   Oh to be thinner when the tables are too close together!  But that is another story...

Love to you all!


  1. Sheri, I debated on whether to fly or drive (I'm a bit closer than you). I decided to drive. Eight hours by myself on the road got a bit tedious but after reading your post I'm glad I did. Flying or driving aside. I have to admit that it was a truly awesome conference!

  2. Sheri:
    I almost forgot to tell you! I nominated you for a Kreativ Blogger award. Lisa Trognola from EBWW nominated me and I nominated you! Here are the rules: Head over to my blog and copy the Kreativ Blogger Award logo and place it one of your upcoming posts. Thank the person who nominated you and link back to their blog.
    List 7 things about you that people might find interesting.
    Nominate 7 other bloggers for their own Kreativ Blogger Award.
    Leave a comment on the blogs you nominate to let them know.