Okay where’s crazy?
That’s what I’m thinking to myself while boarding a flight dressed in navy blue polyester. I’m standing at the rear of the aircraft keeping an eye on bags and overhead bins as I smile and say, “hello, how are you, welcome,” to passengers who look upset as soon as they see just how far back they’re seated. (Hey, someone has to sit there) While I’m explaining to a passenger that yes, his seat does recline, even though he’s in the last row, I find myself wondering if this is crazy. Because crazy is here. Somewhere. I just don’t know where.
In Jeff White’s post, Drunk American Airlines passenger grabs flight attendant butt…in front of wife, he asked the question, “Can somebody out there please tell me what is with these people going crazy on flights?”
Yeah, and after you tell Jeff, could you please tell me? Because if anyone needs to know it’s me! The flight attendant. The one who has to deal with crazy.
Oh hold on a second, a passenger is flagging me down…
“Excuse me, ma’am,” A young woman hands me a boarding pass. “Someone is in my seat.”
I look at her seat, 35E, and she’s right, there is a passenger occupying her seat, which is a little weird, considering it’s the second worst seat on the aircraft, right in front of the worst seat on the aircraft – the middle seat in the last row. And what’s even more strange, it turns out, is the person sitting in the seat actually shows me a boarding pass for another seat, which is a very good seat – an aisle seat at the front of the aircraft.
“I’m not moving,” says the preppy woman who is not moving from the second worst seat on the airplane.
Hmm…could this be crazy? I wonder, as the woman explains the reason she’s not moving is because she wants to sit in the back, so she can see the movie, even though there’s a movie screen near her seat up front.
While she’s explaining this to me, a man sporting a handlebar mustache approaches, looks at the woman who is still talking, and says, “I think you’re in my seat, Ma’am.” Of course he does not have a boarding pass to prove that this is, in fact, his seat, that he “thinks” she’s in.
I sigh. And while I’m asking the woman to go back to her seat so I can figure out exactly who is supposed to be in this freakin seat, Mr. sweet stache walks to the back of the airplane and plops down on the floor, placing an overstuffed backpack between his long legs.
“Don’t worry,” he calls from the floor. “I’ll just camp out here during the flight.” And he smiles.
I turn around, not smiling, because he has said this as if he means it, which leads me to wonder, could this be crazy? Because it’s kind of crazy he thinks he’s going to sit there. On the floor. In front of the lavatory. Beside my jumpseat. Yeah. I think not.
While I turn my back from the woman sitting in the wrong seat, I try to explain to the man now on the floor that he can not sit there during flight, that he has to actually sit in a seat because of the little metal thing that goes click, that thing we call a seat belt, and while I’m trying to get through to this guy, he gets to his feet and starts walking up the aisle, like he knows exactly where he’s going, which is not to a seat.
From the back of the airplane I watch as he briskly walks up the aisle, through business class, all the way up to first class, where I’m told he stopped in the middle of the cabin and said, and he said this very loudly, “Okay fine I’ll eat your crappy first class food now!”
Umm…what? Now? Opposed to when? Yeah, this is definitely crazy. We’ve got crazy on the plane. And if he doesn’t settle down, we’ll be walking crazy off this airplane.
Later on in the flight, I’m standing in the business class galley when a passenger from coach whips the curtain back and asks if she can buy a business class entree. She holds up a wad of crumpled bills. I ask her if they ran out of food in coach and she tells me no, as she stares at my cheese panini lying on the counter, the one I brought from home. While I’m telling her that we don’t SELL business class food, due to the fact that people traveling in business have already paid for the food, and actually eat the food, she interrupts with, “Can I just buy a roll or something!”
I don’t even have time to figure out what to say to that, because as she’s straightening out a crumpled bill, the man with the stache walks out of the lavatory. His pants are undone. And he’s headed this way.
I gulp. Turn around. Grab a rock hard roll. And pray he’ll keep walking. Please keep walking!
“Water,” he says, pushing past the woman who wants a roll, and enters the galley where he decides that this is the place to zip up the pants.
O-kay. Water it is. As I reach for a plastic cup, I see out of the corner of my eye a brown leather belt whip into the air. Oh god. My heart is pounding. I pray he’s not too crazy, just a little crazy, because I really don’t want him strangling me over the second worst seat he could not sit in or the the crappy first class food he did not eat.
“Here ya go,” I say, eyeing the belt in his hand.
The belt is placed next to my panini and he downs his drink. “Thanks.”
“You’re welcome,” I say, looking at the belt that is still lying next to the panini as he leans up against the counter. He’s making me nervous. Very nervous. As we both stare at the belt.
“Coffee?” he says.
“Sure!” Happy for the distraction, I turn around and peek into the empty coffee pot. Great. I smile. “I’ll brew a new pot and bring it to you.”
“Forget it!” He grabs the belt, loops it around his waist, and disappears.
I sigh. Because that was crazy. Or am I crazy? I can’t tell anymore.
“Yeah, umm, can I get that roll?” asks a voice from behind me.