Not so friendly skies…

October 10, 2009



I’ve been traveling a lot with my new job and I’ve come to realize that I don’t enjoy air travel very much.  It’s not that I’m afraid my plane will fall from the sky.   In fact, I’m pretty sure that I’m more likely to win the lottery than explode in mid-flight.  It’s all the other stuff that goes along with traveling the friendly skies that really puts me over the edge.  For example…


While waiting in the airport to board my flight to Reno a couple of weeks ago I had the pleasure of watching a 2-year old little boy completely lose his mind.  Being a father of two, I understand that “shit” happens and sometimes your kids revert back to “lord of the flies” type behavior regardless of your parenting skill level.  But what I witnessed in the terminal was far from the normal two-year old temper tantrum.  What I was watching was a child who had completely lost his little mind and was so far off the reservation that there was no way he was ever going to find his way back.


To begin with he was screaming at the top of his lungs and crying uncontrollably- that in itself- no big deal,  But this little bundle of joy was taking it to the next level.  He was sprinting from place to place tackling peoples “single roll-on and personal carry-on items” (that’s all the airlines will allow- if you have traveled lately it will make perfect sense).  I stared in utter amazement as he assaulted some poor guy’s computer bag like a Division 1 linebacker.  I think the owner was as amazed as I was because he damn near spit out the $12 latte he was sipping.  After decimating the lap top he moved over to an orange, hard-shelled roller bag and began to kick it mercilessly to the chagrin of the elderly woman who was still gripping the telescoping handle.  I know what you’re thinking why didn’t someone correct the little maniac and end his reign of terror?  The simple answer is that in our society it’s taboo to correct another person’s child.  To do so could potentially lead to a law suit and an enduring relationship with the child as you pay his/her way through college.


The bigger question is- where was this kid’s parents?  The answer- sitting on the side lines doing macramé watching the collective mood of Gate 21 plummet into the crapper.   That’s right I said macramé, they had a bag of hemp twine and wooden beads and they appeared to be making a decorative plant hanger.  They were easy to pick out because they were the only ones whose mouths weren’t gaping open with a look of complete distain in their eyes.  


Finally, the father stood up, slipped on his “Jesus Creepers”, adjusted his pony tail and walked over to his boy.  I was pretty shocked.   I’ve read about “flower children” or “Hippies” (what ever you want to call them) but I had never seen one in the wild and this dude and his wife were the genuine article.  They looked like they just came down from a week long acid trip at Woodstock and were flying back to their wilderness commune.  I think he called his boy, “Moon-Beam” or “Orbit-Zoom” or something like that- it was definitely astronomy related.  I personally think “Godzilla” would have been more appropriate considering the amount  of damage he was doing.


You’re probably wondering if Mr. Granola-bar was angry.  Did he speak sternly to his hell raising child?  Did he even consider counting him down, putting him in time out or any other parenting measure that we, as responsible parents, employ to convince others that we do in fact, have some sort of control over our offspring?  The answer to all of these is NO!  He simply smiled and in a hushed, calm, pathetic tone asked the boy if he was ready to get on the plane. 


Are you friggin kidding me?  That’s it?  Holy Shit, my head would have spun around backwards and fire would have shot out of my eyes if my boys were carrying on as poorly as “Rainbow-Bright”.  But that was it, not even a meager attempt to correct his son’s behavior.  Instantly, the ugly dagger of loathing that had been building among the future passengers of United flight 752 found a target- and his name was Mr. Granola.


At this point I had to turn away because all that I could think about was the poor kid was going to face some major challenges through his formative years.  It was then that it hit me.  There were approximately 250 people waiting to board my plane.  The plane had 38 rows of seats, 7 seats per row- that’s a pretty booked flight.  In a moment of panic I began to wonder if God hated me enough to place me within close proximity of Charlie Manson and his kin folk?  Come to find out- yes he did.


As I neared my seat the realization that I was going to spend the next four hours nestled neatly between Mr. and Mrs. Granola came to fruition.  I almost threw up. 


How I survived is a story for another day… 

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Teri and the cats of Furrydance posted the following on October 10, 2009 at 3:06 pm.

did it involve smoking some of their macrame?(not in the crapper, of course)

Jeremiah posted the following on October 13, 2009 at 2:39 am.

I really enjoy reading your blog and you never fail to make me smile. You are an excellent writer.

shane posted the following on October 16, 2009 at 5:28 pm.

Jeremiah, hey man thanks a ton- it’s comments like yours that keep me writing. shane

Heather posted the following on October 17, 2009 at 1:34 am.

Okay, I am dying to hear the rest of this one!

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