But I guess I should tell you right off the bat it’s not the one involving hot stewardesses and airplane bathrooms. Sorry. It’s the one involving stuff you find in the seat pocket in front of you.
On this last trip from Oakland to Burbank, I was doubly blessed.
On my flight down, as I reached for my copy of Spirit magazine (absolutely fascinating article on Albuquerque’s under rated night life, by the way)…
…I found a piece of lined paper which was equal parts poetry and graphic art.
“The happy kangaroo flies to San Diego.”
Who is the kangaroo? What does it represent? Is it our id, that primal urge to “bound” out of our narrowly proscribed lives? And why is the kangaroo happy? Did he get three seats all to himself?
“An abandoned cat whined on the plane, he was stuck on the wing!”
Oh, poor, poor kitty! We have all felt abandoned to the elements and locked out of love at points in our lives. I would whine too!
“The male flight attendant hits on April. The flight attendant falls in love with April and Jason. A steward falls in love with a passenger on an airplane.”
As you can see, the penmanship varies with each of the lines. Clearly three separate authors bravely took on the subject of love…
Author One tells us that a male attendant makes a pass at April, outcome undetermined. It’s a traditional and exciting set up, and we eagerly wait to see how April will respond.
Author Two is more radical in his or her take. A flight attendant falls in love with both April and Jason, challenging conventional notions of love: that it is gender specific, and begs the question, is it possible to love two people at the same time? Food for thought.
Author three keeps love at arm’s length, choosing instead generic characters – “a steward,” “a passenger,” perhaps as ciphers for us all? Or perhaps Author Three is simply celebrating the possibility of love between any steward and any passenger, a tacit acknowledgment of love’s fragility?
On my return flight, I reached into the pocket and found these:
Add that to what the stewardess gave me and I had four packets of peanuts! Double my normal allotment! Now I happen not to like peanuts, and didn’t eat any of the four packets, but it’s just the idea!
I took them home before throwing them in the trash: after all, it would’ve been rude of me not to accept this gift – this smile – from the universe.