Tuesday, May 19, 2009

The Big Guy at the Airport

A number of years ago, My wife and I were traveling back from a vacation in Mexico. Waiting at the almost empty gate for the plane to arrive were just a few passengers. I was seated in one of those monotonous rows of seats; You know, the ones with two metal bars sticking out horizontal and a leather "seat" strung between them? So my wife steps away for a few moments, and this guy, huge, say 350-400 lbs sits in one of these seats in the row in front of me. He's maybe 6 feet in front of me.

I hear a creak, and as I look up from my book, I see one of those metal bars slipping downwards where this guy is sitting. These bars are sort of clamped onto a support beam that spans between two concrete trash can/ash trays. So this guy stands up, reaches down and pulls the bar up, back into its original position. He walks to the cocktail stand immediately behind me. I'm thinking to myself; "Now that something you don't see every day... A guy break an industrial strength airport chair!"

So my wife comes back from the bathroom and sits next to me completely unaware of what just happened. I'd like to tell her, but the Big Guy is pretty much right behind me and would certainly hear the conversation. I keep quiet, until....

A few moments later, a bookish looking lady walks along that same row of seats. As luck would have it, she sits down in the exact same seat that the Big Guy just broke (and fixed). She opens her book, puts on her reading glasses and starts to read.

Within a second or two of her settling in, the seat begins to give way. She must weigh all of 100 lbs, but its enough to start the bar slipping again. Instead of moving to another seat, she just slides over to the high side. The bar slips again, but this time really fast, surprising her into letting out a high pitched shriek.

By this time, I can hardly contain myself. I'm biting my knuckle to keep from laughing; Remember, the Big Guy is *right* behind me. My wife thinks I'm having a fit of epilepsy or something and can't figure out why I'm trying so hard not to laugh.

Finally the big guy hears the shriek, sees me convulsing trying not to laugh out loud, and sees my wife trying to make sense of it all. He lets out the jolliest laugh I've ever heard. I can no longer contain myself and join him in uncontrollable laughter.

Life is full of awkward situations. They all don't end in laughter, but those that do remain the most memorable!

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