Sunday, October 23, 2011

The Awkward Mile High Club

I’m not sure what it is, but I seem to attract interesting and peculiar people whenever I travel. Whether it was the annoying Liza Minnelli/ David Guest look-a-like (see the “Flying with Liza” entry) or the bald albino sleep-walking zombie (see “The Red Eye” entry), there is a track record of people bothering me on planes. My latest flight from Tampa to LA did not disappoint and the unfortunate trend was able to continue.

For starters, the flight was horribly long at approximately a little under 5 hours. To make matters worse, I usually have trouble sleeping on planes and stupidly left my iPod and headphones in my checked baggage. So all I had available was my laptop and an Esquire magazine with Justin Timberlake on the cover 

What? Don't judge me! Not only is he musically talented and a decent actor, but he's funny too!

Because I didn’t have any distractions, my plan was to get some work done. Fortunately, I got lucky because the flight was not even close to being full and the middle seat was open between me (aisle seat) and the woman who sat by the window. The woman by the window was a blond, in her early 30s, attractive, but not usually my type. Because I don’t particularly enjoy talking on planes and I’m taken, I wasn’t planning to strike up a conversation.

Before the flight took off the woman used the bathroom. We sat in the 25th row and the bathroom was behind us. On the way back to her seat, I noticed that she walked right past our row and looked lost. For whatever reason, she forgot what row she was in and eventually was able to figure it out. I thought it was a little strange, but it can happen to the best of us. The plane departs and she seems obsessed with staring out the window. She then used the bathroom for a second time and got lost again on her way back . The woman somehow ended up near first class and looked around aimlessly. At this point, I turned to the guy across from me and said, “She’s gotta be on something.”

The woman finally made it back to her seat and I said some innocent joke about her consistent problem of getting lost. The joke then turns into conversation and we started chatting a little bit. She seemed like a friendly enough individual and more importantly appeared to be an open book. Almost to the point where I can ask her anything and she would not be offended. I feed off people like that because I’m the complete opposite and I can use them as future characters in my work. As I talked to her, she kept slapping me on my arm whenever I made a sarcastic comment. By the 20th slap, it was pretty damn annoying!

Here are some tidbits I learned about this woman, who we’ll call “Blondie.”

-She’s 34 years old
-Aspiring actress
-Has lived in LA for 5 years.
-Originally from NY, but family lives in Florida.
-Her parents are divorced, but she’s very close with both of them
-She recently got out of a two-year on and off again relationship with an older gentleman.
-Has never heard of gmail before (this is my favorite one)

I also should add that Blondie has the worst memory I’ve ever experienced, which might explain for her having trouble remembering where her seat was. She asked me my name multiple times and where I lived in LA. Blondie revealed to me that she had one or two glasses a wine before the flight because she is a nervous flier. When the flight attendants came around with the beverage cart, she desperately wanted another glass a wine. I hardly ever drink on flights, but I figured in order to keep up with her I better get some wine in me too. As the conversation continued, she became more and more flirtatious.

I don’t mind a little flirting when it’s fun and innocent, but this got a little out of hand. Because the middle seat was vacant she moved into it and whispered a few playful comments into my ear. She then kissed me on my cheek a few times, but when she tried to kiss me on my mouth, I told her I can’t because I’m involved with somebody. That information really didn’t matter to her and only made her more tempted to mess with me. She wore a revealing a dress and apparently her breast kept falling out of it. (For the record, I did not see it fall out) In addition, she purposely rubbed her chest against my arm and told me that I had nice thighs.  

It was totally worth the investment.

At this point, it was going in a bad direction so I got up and acted like I had use the bathroom. As I got up, she of course grabbed my buttocks. (Ladies… Can you blame her?)  As I get back to my seat, my plan was to act busy. She got the hint and listened to her iPod, but had trouble sitting still. She tried sleeping or reading her magazine, but nothing worked. 

She then started talking to me again and revealed she has naked photos of herself on her phone. I told her I had some too of myself, so we swapped pics. (Kidding folks!) Out of nowhere and for no apparent reason she whipped out her underwear from her purse. My guess for this insane action was to imply that she wasn’t wearing any. At this point I prayed to God none of the other passengers were staring at us. 

Finally, the pilot told us we were close to landing in LA. I forgot to mention to all of you, that when we first started to chatting she asked me how I was getting home. Before I knew she was a tad crazy, I told her the truth and that I drove to the airport. After she asked me for a ride back to her place in Studio City, I quickly tried to change my tune that I was taking the Super Shuttle. Even though, she had the worst memory in history, Blondie somehow remembered that I first said I parked at the airport. For obvious reasons, there was no way I was going to drive her home. Her only other way to get home, was to take the Fly Away bus to Van Nuys. I promised her I would walk with her back to the baggage claim, so she wouldn’t get lost. My plan was to ditch her after I got my suitcase.

Apparently, I had made a wrong turn to the baggage claim and I somehow ended up in Terminal 7, when I needed to be in Terminal 5. At LAX, two terminals is a long ass walk! And did I really need to spend any more time with Blondie after a five hour flight? We finally arrived at the baggage claim and I saw my suitcase. This was my time to ditch her. Literally a second later, she grabbed her luggage too. What are the chances? I felt like I was in a horror movie, where the monster/villain just won’t die!   

I head outside to the ground transportation and I’m somehow able to lose her because of the crowds of people. As I waited for my parking shuttle, I noticed the Fly Away bus to Van Nuys parked right in front of me. I looked around for Blondie and she was nowhere to be seen. I then saw her standing on the wrong platform looking lost again of course. Being the nice chap that I am, I yelled and tried to tell her that her bus was here. I don’t know if she ended up getting on the bus because my parking shuttle came a minute later.

All I know is that on my next flight, I’m bringing a rape whistle.  


P.S. Blondie has a photo shoot on You Tube and an interesting acting reel on Vimeo. If you want to see what she looks like, shoot me an e-mail and I’ll give you the link.

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