Insight From the Economy Cabin

A Southwest airplane in the sky
A Southwest airplane in the sky
If you look close enough you can see me in economy class

I’m the kind of guy who boards his flight and elects to sit in the very back row of the plane. The banter of the attendants keeps me informed. I get to hear all the juicy gossip that comes with being a frequent flier. This type of stuff you don’t get to read about in magazines.

Thank God for easy bathroom access, my stow-away compartment, and sitting next to alcoholic beverages. Establishing a substantial buzz is child’s play when you’re cruising at 30,000 feet.

Our fear of rejection isn’t a factor when you’re surrounded by hundreds of people you’ll never meet again. The possibilities are endless. Most humans curl up in technology and drown out the world. I welcome speaking to another person, no matter their socioeconomic status, just as long as they don’t smell.

You’ll find everybody and nobody on a plane, from business class to passed gas. I love how they sort us. “Fifty dollars to upgrade to seat A10–21”, they announce on the loudspeaker. This business class tightwad stands up, wearing slacks that are so baggy he looks like he stepped out of a 90s time machine. He makes his way to the podium. Certain people piss money.

Catch me in the C group. I’m the one shuffling down the aisle with a misshapen carry-on that resembles a starfish.

My faith in humanity comes back after a hero steps up and defeats the overhead bag storage. There isn’t a feeling better in the world than seeing a granny smile at you through her dentures. This kind deed is equivalent to helping an old lady across the street in the 21st century.

Now we’re getting settled.

Do you think there are restrictions for more significant humans flying? What if the seat belt doesn’t fit? I’d like to see a flight attendant help somebody massive. It’s like trying to secure a bungee cord around Donald Trump’s ego.

I have always appreciated the battle for the armrest. It’s not one that relies on strength. It’s a psychological thriller where fortune favors the bold. You don’t get to enjoy this interactive movie in first class. I dislike beating Tina, the soccer mom in the maternity gown, but someone has to win. There’s a strict policy on vacant armrests because they are an endangered species.

How much do you know about yourself if you’ve never spoken with a stranger? I lie, it’s more fun that way. I once told a Korean lady that I was an American Brazilian Jujitsu fighter. Yes, I know, contradicting, right? I got drunk with a college linebacker for Alabama on a flight back from LA. He invited me to a house party after we convinced the flight attendant to pour us four more shots of Jack Daniels. There is a two-drink limit on Southwest flights.

Flying is rather peculiar.

The rising action has always been the best part of life. We are always trying to get to where we are going, but once we have gotten there, we try getting somewhere else. We are in a constant state of motion, fueled by kinetic energy. It doesn’t matter where I’m going; I enjoy the journey as much. That’s a metaphor for life taught through airplane peanuts and $15 vodka sodas. If anything, you’ll get felt up during security checks and enjoy yourself at least a little. That depends on who is doing the pat-down.

In an instant, the wheels are rattling on the ground, my head shaking back and forth. The flight attendant is yelling at me for having my laptop out during landing. My stomach is turning upside down.

We have arrived at our destination. Please do not unbuckle your seat belts until the captain turns off the cabin lights. Sorry, you’re too broke to fly anywhere else, thank you for ending up with Southwest.

And what’s up with that airplane food anyways?

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