Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Air Travel

I leave for Utah today and I can't think about anything else. I'm plagued with worries. Traveling sucks, in a way. I don't mind the part where you're on the road or in the plane, but everything leading up to that time is rather stressful. All I can think about is getting to the airport on time, or being certain I've packed everything -- as we all know, if you forget something the trip will dissolve into a nightmare. Not really, but with the way I obsess you'd think that was the case.

In other people's lives, I'm sure that traveling is really smooth. Other people appear unruffled. These are also the kind of people who never pass gas or do the dishes or put their pants on one leg at a time. They walk through the airport with their laptop bag slung over their shoulder, their suits are neatly pressed, they exude confidence. They hang out with their peers at the airport bar, drinking and laughing like a beer commercial. Their teeth glimmer when they smile, their eyes are bright and sparkly and photoshopped. Everything is easy. Everything is good. Before the trip they have a manservant pack their bags for them. They know if they forget all their pants or socks, they'll just buy a new wardrobe. No big deal. A limo picks them up and takes them to the airport on a private back road. They can charter a helicopter if traffic is monstrous.

At least, this is how it looks from the outside. There's always people running around the airport who you'd think could never afford a ticket. They look like they just rolled out of a garbage can. There seems to be a windstorm of chaos following in their wake. You see them and expect to find loose newspapers trailing behind them and cookie crumbs stuck to their sweater. They look like they couldn't decide whether to travel comfortably, in their sweats, or business casual, in their freshly ironed sweats. You pass them as they sit in the McDonald's of the airport food court munching on fries and they look as harried as someone forced from bed at three in the morning to pick up their son who just got a DUI.

I fit into the harried crowd. I look like I've had second thoughts about my carry-on, like I wish I'd checked it after all. I look like I'm always just about to miss my plane and I'm lost and I can't read the sign announcing my gate. I don't wear sweats, but I'd be at home in them and everyone knows it and the flight attendants always ask if I want a blanket and a pillow as though they suspect I might have my own in that carry-on I've been sneering at the whole time. That would be wise, actually, since the blankets have been used by other passengers and who knows what diseases they were carrying. Small pox. Measles. Something like that.

Wish me luck.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Belated Birthday Post

Last Thursday I turned thirty. I could go on and on about the woes of aging and how strange it feels to say, "I'm thirty," and all that, but what's the point? This isn't a Hallmark card, or Shoebox Greeting or whatever brand of greeting card it is out there perpetuating all the hilarious jokes about getting old. In fact, why am I even talking about it?

Birthdays are still great, even when you get old. Honestly, I'm not really SAD about aging, if for no other reason than that the older I get, the better the presents get. Okay, so not really every year, just this year, otherwise by the time I am thirty-five I should have a Hummer . . . or a tank (the kind with cannons on it, not the ones seen driving around American towns doubling as Cadillac Escalades or some other "family" vehicle). And what's with all the crap about the economy being bad? I'm still spending money. Loads of it.

Last year I got a Trek 4300 for my birthday. That's a mountain bike. This year I got a Scott S40, that's a road bike. A picture:

What's with the bikes, you might ask. Simple. I haven't ruled out nuclear holocaust and when the shit is coming down, how else am I going to get around quickly? The rest of you will be in wheelchairs. I'll be gliding along on all my bikes.

Really I just wanted to say "the shit's coming down." For my sensitive readers out there, I've given up on you. The only sensitive people I know stopped reading my blog long ago. I'm too crass, I guess.*

I almost got a Sledgehammer this year, but instead I just put pegs on my Trek.

Seriously, who knew Scott was out there making bikes? Ski poles, ski goggles . . . and bikes. I guess I'm WAY behind the times.

Special thanks to my lover for working all the long hours just to put bread on the table and a bike in my back pocket (it weighs so little, you see). And also thanks to all the relatives who kindly sent me money (even though I KNOW you don't read my blog [secretly YOU are the sensitive readers I was talking about]). This is where it went: the bike and bike accoutrements. Happy birthday.

*Understatement is funny because it's understated. No one in their right mind could presume to think that the word "shit" is offensive. Understatement is a form of exaggeration, and we all know exaggeration is funnier than hell.