|paid actors. based on actual events|
Mr. Flavius and I recently took a trip to Johnstown, Pennsylvania. Our flight had a layover in Detroit, Michigan. The first flight over was populated with another flight crew headed to their flight flying out of DMA. One of the flight attendants was sitting across the aisle from me, we were chatting about our son, B. and how pleasant he was being for the early hour, when I asked if they were en route to another airport. Unfortunately, at this juncture the conversation took a turn for the worst, as I was sternly dressed down for assuming that this was not work, that there is a real strain associated with this type of service, and that they don't get to just sleep on the job just because they aren't activated into to service. Whereupon, a bit stunned, I returned my attention to my toddler and our increasingly-more-mutilated-by-the-minute Skyway's magazine and the aforementioned attendant promptly began to snore.
The other truly bizarre moment of our adventure came on the same flight, when I was introduced to what can only be called: GAMMA*: Thinking Inside of the Box. Specifically, the tiny-onboard-torture-chamber, referred to euphemistically as: The Lavatory. Did you know that the root of 'lavatory', lavo, lavare (to wash, to bathe), derives from the Greek verb lou [ to bathe; literally, to bathe the body or head]. Have you ever attempted (much less considered) to wash your body or head in one of those things? I spend most of the flight praying that I don't need to use The Lavatory and failing that I play the 'no touchie' version of the Hokey Pokey (You stick your backside in/ You stick your backside out/ You stick your backside in and youhopetoGoodnessyoudidnttouchathing/ You do the Hokey Pokey and you turn yourself around. . .).
Moving to the 'failing that' portion of the commentary, Nature called. I reluctantly answered. Upon sliding the latch closed into the 'Ocupado' position, I was confronted with these:
Dear Readers, if you have ever worked in food service, you may recognize these. If not, allow me to illuminate you. They are pre-packaged drip coffee packs. When I stated that someone had possibly placed these as a joke, I was met with the even stare of an attendant who must have ice water running through her veins (no doubt from many other similarly curious/totally grossed out passengers). "It keeps the odor down. We use them as air fresheners." SERIOUSLY. I would have thought a routine cleaning, failing that: disinfectant spray, or heck, I'll even accept FABULOSO, which I am fairly certain is just perfume in a bottle and utterly lacks any sanitizing elements despite its happy array of colores y fragrancias. I can only chalk this miserable failure up to "Things the Underwear Bomber Took Away From Us." Just more proof that one person can really ruin it for everybody.
*name changed to protect the silly