observations from the airport


the people in front of me in security are a family of five with three boys probably somewhere between 7 and 12. all redheads. somehow this affinity supersedes my usual extreme irritation with any groups larger than two or with children younger than 20 in the airport. theyre all huddled around the little tsa podium and the agent is doing that thing where they ask each of the kids their first and last names and whether “these guys are your mom and dad,” gesturing to their parents. They say yes, obviously. that interaction always made me so nervous as a kid. “be sure to make eye contact” my parents would say while we waited in line. i’m always confused by people who buy books in the gate. i just find it hard to believe that you really have NO books at home to bring but you want to read a book at 5:15am badly enough that you’re in the airport bookstore willing to both lower your quality standards and withstand the inflated purchase price. we all know you’ll just fall asleep on the plane like the rest of us. There should probably be more coffee options in this fancy new laguardia terminal. i’m waiting in a long line at whats really not a coffee shop at all, more like a fancy hudson news (theme is chic brown/exposed wood instead of blue) with a coffee kiosk in the back like the one they set up in the library during finals. they only have whole and skim milk and two thermoses of burnt coffee. this is an affront to the lga coffee drinking population, one that the woman behind the counter has to own up to during every transaction after someone asks for oat or almond milk. about every third person hears the bad news and storms off all exacerbated. i’m confused that everyone seems so surprised when we’ve all been standing in this line for 15 minutes, undoubtedly within earshot of the 10 register exchanges that happen before it becomes our turn. the pizza place is really bustling for 5:20am. the guy next to me in the gate is making what looks like a brunch menu in Preview. it’s in that font that brunch menus always seem to be in — not quite Lavenda but definitely no Helvetica — and the background is that menu color, the tannish greenish brownish one. the headings read, “benedicts”; “vegan and gluten free”; “healthy”; “melts”; “sandwiches” ; and “chicken sandwiches”, which im not really sure should warrant a category all to itself but it does seem to have a lot of options under it. he can’t seem to decide whether to price the “southern belle’s oatmeal” at $5.99 or $7.49. there’s no description, so I’m not sure what makes it so ladylike. Everyone here knows i love southwest, but the “hello what number are you” confrontation during boarding will never not be weird. when the woman i ask tells me she’s B20, im not sure whether im supposed to tell her im B17 to justify the fact that im about to squeeze in in front of her or whether she couldn’t care less what number i am and my squeezing is indication enough that whatever number i have is lower than 20. i tell her and she seems irritated. Walking onto the plane, there are choices to make and I feel out of practice. sometimes i go for the first seat i see even if it’s in the middle, but today i don’t feel so desperate. i’m mostly a window girl but i have a feeling it’ll be cold by the window today so i take the first aisle seat i see. i quickly regret it when i realize that the flight is only full enough to fill about half the middle seats. if i had gone just a few rows back, i bet i could’ve gotten an aisle and avoided a middle seat mate. as im thinking this, a nice seeming guy in a very ugly shirt sits down next to me and starts looking at rental properties in tucson. could be worse. In the air, all my downloaded music is either terrible or makes me want to cry. i have to pee the whole time but am self conscious about getting up. i beat my high score in temple run.