Friday, August 24, 2007

Plane Rude

If I wasn't so tired, I could probably see it as a solution to the long standing physics problem. The irresistible force of Three Seat Bob is slowly but surely demonstrating what happens: The immovable object eventually bends outward from the waist up, half way into the aisle, where the cart can smash its entire arm instead of just the elbow. The second time someone brushes their bum past my face on the way to the toilet, I resist back, hard. The message slowly passes through the layers of fat and 10 minutes later Three Seat Bob notices, "Sorry man, this is all the room I have", he says.

It's been a long day, I'm grumpy, I want to get home and my usual good humor deserts me. I'd been doing okay up to now. I never said a word when he stated that "he'd warned them not to put him in a middle seat" like it's the airlines fault he doesn't fit. I ignored his complaint about how "the seats get smaller every year", because not so long ago I used to tell myself the same lie to excuse my own expanding waistline, but this is too much.

"No", I reply, "It's all the room you have, plus half the room I have".

Bob goes quiet for a second, I think he expected a sympathetic response, an ally in his war against the injustice of a $150 seat that doesn't comfortably fit his 300 pound frame, but if I was the wrong guy on the wrong day before I sat down, the smell of his armpit soaking into my shirt is not making me any happier.

"At least you have the aisle", he says, as if this is the logical conclusion to his need to take up half my seat. I laugh. Not a happy chuckle, more a wry snort, but a laugh all the same. He doesn't like that much either.

"I guess I'm not all that sorry then", he says.

"I guess you're not", I reply, redoubling my immovableness.


mindy said...

Yikes! Do they ever call you Mean Ian?

Ok, I'd probably be pissed too. I'm too much of a weenie to say anything, though.

Ian said...

Every now and again, not too often, but it happens, I can't stop myself from saying what I'm thinking. I usually regret it afterwards, but I'm still angry about this one.

Vikki said...

Obese people should pay for two seats.

Ian said...

I completely agree, they certainly use two seats. Trouble is the airline sells one of them to someone else, usually me.

Jen said...


I think by now most airline seats are as small as they're going to get, but some airlines are getting smaller to make more room. For example, Midwest (whom I currently love) will soon be going from 4 seats (currently 2 on each aisle side) in a row to 6 seats in a row (3 on each aisle side). I'm not sure I'll be in as lovin' mood with 3 seats now. . .?

***sigh*** I just loved that room.

Big corporate greedy director boards people. Want more money; sell the airline. . . ***grunt***

Ian said...

Cramming two extra seats in seems like a lot. I wish more airlines would do the forward-backward-forward thing. At least that way I wouldn't have to shove my arm into some fat dude's 'pits.

Alli said...

Man, I feel your pain.

Flying is SO NOT FUN anymore...

Smelly people, large or just-plain-rude people hogging seats and arms rests, rude airline employees, cancelled flights, lost luggage, screaming children, crying babies...I could go on & on....

All this I have encountered in my few summer flights.

Not fun!

Ian said...

I believe in the unwritten rule that the person in the middle seat gets the armrest, no arguments. Which makes it worse when Three Seat Bob accepts my concession and then attempts to invade my seat.

alex said...

Yep, I know the wry snort, been on the receiving end myself!

I used to love flying, I now hate it, it's just too much hassle altogether.