Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Assault on Portland: Part One, In which I meet a very attractive woman and then become very frustrated

So. The day started out well. I woke up on time and finished packing and ran off to work to send some last minute emails. I caught the bus and the metro easily enough. I was walking downstairs to transfer to the Yellow Line and looking for a bench with room to sit when I locked eyes with a devastatingly attractive brunette. "I know where I'm sitting," thought the small bit of my brain that was still working. We both gave a bit of a twitch and stopped staring at each other. I am willing to admit that she may have been staring at me out of stunned curiosity as to my t-shirt and my haircut. The mohawk is a little odd and being cut off this week.

So I sat down on the bench next to her, but not creepily close. She was reading USAToday and I whipped out my book, Hagakure, which I read because it accentuates my coolness. I glanced over at her paper and noticed her glancing at my book. We did that for a minute or two before I started laughing to myself. She asked me if I was laughing at her paper. I said that yes I was but not in a bad way. I explained that I was on my way to a wedding on a holiday weekend, just like the article was describing. We talked about that and horrible plane flights, there were laughs shared. The train came. I couldn't sit next to her or near enough to continue the conversation, so I did the lamest thing possible. I wrote my personal email address on the back of my business card and asked her to email me to share more travel horror stories.

Please understand that I had nothing else to write on and give her otherwise I would not have used the lamest tool in a man's arsenal. The business card. What the fuck was I thinking? Anyway, I haven't heard from her yet, but I did see the Troma car again and left a "Toxie says hi!" note on it, which should make that person's day. Or creep them the hell out.

Anyway, so I get to the airport and find out that my flight is delayed due to previous day's weather. I missed my connection in O'Hare and then had to wait in more lines that I can remember to get on a flight at 7:50 in the evening. I was supposed to be on a flight at 3:15.

I got to meet a bunch of people and watch some of them decide to rent cars to drive to Lansing, MI. Most of the other people going to Portland were on their way back from vacations or meetings which means that they were losing nothing by being late, while I was losing chimichanga time. I watched this kid carefully spreading fake cheese on a cracker on the floor underneath a counter by the customer service line for United. He spent at least half an hour spreading cheese on one cracker and then dropped it cheese side down. He carefully picked it up and scraped all the cheese off the floor and replaced it on the cracker. I was unable to watch him eat the cracker which I was really eager to see for some reason unknown to me now.

We finally took off around 9:30 after leaving the gate at 8:00. I recommend that everyone on a United flight listen to the From the Flight Deck channel. You can hear the interactions between the control tower and the planes on the same channel. It is illuminating and can give you more information about you actual departure time. We eventually take off ten minutes ahead of the massively delayed flight to which I was rescheduled.

Two hours into the flight, the head flight attendant asked if there were any doctors on the flight. A guy in my row leaps up and twenty minutes later we are making an emergency landing in Billings, MT. This takes an hour, but the guy lives. Apparently, the poor bastard was hemorrhaging.
We finally landed in Portland at 12:40 AM and my plans for an evening of burritos with my soon to be wed friends were shot to shit. Damn.

Categorized under Customer Service, schadenfreude, booty, frustration, I hate traveling, I love traveling, expensive vacations, long boring story not involving sex, and lost time.


Adorable Girlfriend said...

Knowing you Chuckles, this could go either way...

Chuckles said...

Oh, don't worry, it is so going that way.