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The Sounds of Silence….

Aug 4

In Rambling, Rants at 7:30am

Just flew Frontier Airlines for the first time. They did a good job. Counter agent was very nice and didn’t even give me the evil eye when I approached laden with 8 pieces to check and just me traveling. Everything was pretty smooth, though, as is typical of every airline, a little tight in coach. I was working on my laptop, and the guy in front of me decided to recline suddenly. I think I might have broken a rib. It’s really, really hard to type when you have to lift your stomach off your keyboard to get to the keys.


So Frontier’s cool, though it is, as their jaunty slogan suggests, a different kind of animal. Rustic is perhaps a good way to put it. I half expected the flight attendants to be wearing red plaid shirts and suspenders. Their free snacks were decidedly on the natural foods, chex-mex side of things. When I passed the flight deck I thought I heard the pilot and co-pilot humming bars from “I’m a Lumberjack and I’m Okay.”

The real trouble with flying a crunchy airline out of a crunchy city is that you might end up sitting near someone who just visited the Pacific Northwest and had a life altering, body scrubbing, soul searching, colon cleansing experience. Such was my fate to sit close-by to someone who had done just that.

Fresh from the salubrious, pine tinged air of the great outdoors, this particularly exuberant, thoroughly pleasant wacko had just been ensconsed at some ashram type of retreat where no conversation was allowed. Yep. Couldn’t speak a word for over, like 48 hours. Silent. Non-verbal. Not a peep.

And my wasn’t she the little pent up bundle of conversation! Holy shit. I was listening (it wasn’t a choice) from a couple rows of seats away in the waiting area, straining my eyes to see if I could see the aisle and seat number on her ticket. I kept thinking about   Airplane! and those folks who offed themselves rather than listen to another word about George Zip.

Oh my. Evidently, the place was really beautiful, and the experience of utter silence so profoundly soothing that, like a magpie on speed, she just chattered on about it to anyone in earshot, leaving any sense of the irony of it all bobbing in the wake of the twin Evinrudes of her lips.

Evidently the  deep, nearly spiritual connection with silence didn’t take. She was a one person cocktail party, basically supplying both ends of the conversation as people desperately tried to appear otherwise engaged. It’s tough, though, attempting to appear compelled by reading the type on the air sickness bag.

It’s okay. Another day in the skies.  A baby started screaming, and the steam went out of any talking in our section. Lord what a wonderful noise.

More tk….

55 Responses to “The Sounds of Silence….”

Werner says:

on August 9, 2010 at 9:21 am

“She can give an aspirin a headache!”: As funny as Joes post is – I REALLY enjoy it – this line just had me in stitches! Relate to your story, Joe – I had babies screaming in my ears and all that. Take it in stride. Thanks for your posts.

Marty Fox says:

on August 9, 2010 at 6:13 pm

Salubrious? I’m guessing that you travel with a thesaurus.(lol) Great word and great post.

Tsumi Talladen says:

on August 10, 2010 at 10:30 am

This is exactly what Shure noise isolating monitors are for. Any time I travel by air I’ve got those puppies in and the only thing I can hear is the faint, muffled engine. Plus they sound better than Bose =P

Love your work, man!

Paul says:

on December 1, 2010 at 12:39 pm

I guess everybody recommending the Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones have never visited your “What’s in the Bag” page.

Lindsay Shetz says:

on October 28, 2011 at 7:14 am

This post is very useful. I adore the way you compose the idea.

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