The other day, I posted about my vacation. The part I didn’t post about was the flight back.
Here are a few things to know next time you fly.
1) Meridiana sucks hairy ones.
That’s the terrible airline we flew. Never heard of it? Neither did the passport agent in NYC. He was like, “Meruh-what? They should name it something people can pronounce.”
Or maybe it’s Air Italy, which was the operating airline? Anyway. Everything’s old and grubby, and the food, which included a frozen-solid tuna salad, is like Meow Mix. Or, in Italian, Il Miao Mix. In business class, which we upgraded to on the way over, the food is only a notch above that. Maybe Fancy Feast.
2) Don’t walk through my exit row.
At the airport, there’s often an exit row available these days if you’re willing to pay for it. Actually, if it’s the Napoli airport, you also have to be willing to leave the check-in counter and find another office window where the lady:
– stubs out her cigarette
– opens and shuts one file drawer
– opens another file drawer
– finally pulls out a big binder
– licks her finger
– thumbs through to find the right xeroxed page
– looks up how much to charge you, or makes it up
– avoids eye contact
– staples a bunch of shit together that you take back to the check-in counter, where the guy looks at the same boarding pass he issued you and says, “OK.”
We did that, and were issued tickets that said “comfort seat.” Ooh, comfort. We were high-fiving each other over our extra-legroom victory all the way till boarding, when we saw that our exit row was a bulkhead seat right in the middle of two bathrooms. In other words, it was a “let’s see if that other bathroom is free” corridor. Everyone kept asking us to move our feet so they could walk through our PAID UPGRADE LEGROOM.
The sweet older lady who was sharing our row (she got the seat for free!) joined me in making it as unattractive as possible to traipse through. She piled up all her bags and put her feet up on them. I propped my feet up against the wall, which is what bulkhead is for. A few people still walked through, but nearly killed themselves doing it, which brought a smile to my face.
3) Don’t do your dumb knee bends near my exit row.
I know thrombosis is a real thing. But really now. Because the roomiest part of the plane was on either side of us, all kinds of turkeys were coming over and doing squats, lunges, every kind of unattractive body contortion right in our faces, some of them for a half hour at a time.
I mean, go away. Get.
And this one guy’s knee bends were so shallow, it was ridiculous. Why bother putting your arms out in front of you if you’re only going to dip an inch? Faker. He wasn’t even engaging his core.
Others stood around chatting with their plastic cups of Pepsi in hand like it was a cocktail party. If a cocktail party were hosted outside a lavatory. One of the regulars, who came by every hour or so, thought he was Brad Pitt. He didn’t really look like Brad Pitt, he just though he did, you could tell. And his girlfriend had bare feet.
There was nothing I could do to these people but shoot them disgusted looks. But some of them did walk through and trip on me.
4) Love locks.
What does that mean? I don’t know. But in addition to the stretch-meisters and the toilet hobnobbers, moms kept standing in that space with their adolescent kids to help them with the bathroom. What 12-year-old needs help going to the bathroom? We kept seeing one pair in particular, with robust, matching, mother-daughter stomachs hanging out. The mom had a t-shirt stretched over hers that said LOVE LOCKS underneath a cartoon of Sylvester the Cat looking befuddled, with a heart over his head. Was it supposed to say LOVE ROCKS? Steven thought maybe LOVE COCKS.
5) Don’t get a big “x” on your customs slip.
NYC customs has a new passport system.
You scan yours on a machine, answer the same questions you already had to hunt for a pen to fill out on the blue card they gave you on the plane (who checks “Yes, I’ve been in contact with diseases”?), then the machine spits out your receipt. If you get a big “X” over your face, it’s bad. It means your companion who didn’t get one can sail on through while you get in another line of grumpy people for the one passport agent who isn’t in his booth. You get to watch him chit-chatting with another passport agent several lines down. When you tell the guy who told you to stand there that no one’s in the booth, he’ll inform you, “That’s the new system.”
6) Don’t put forks in the toilet.
I mean, was someone going to? Do Italians do that? I wouldn’t have thought of it until I saw this on the lid. And then, I really really wanted to try putting all those things in the toilet. Make a stew. If only I had a razor blade, a tissue, a cup, a bottle, and a giant fork that spans the length of a toilet bowl.
I don’t know what you’ll have to say about this, but I bet you have some fun airplane stories. Or maybe a fork that’s as long as a toilet bowl. Got one of those? Got any flying tips? What’s the craziest thing you ever put in a toilet?
TELL ME IN THE COMMENTS.
Oh, ps – I can’t really complain about a flight that took off on time and landed on time. That’s why these aren’t complaints, they’re tips.