The Awk Spot: The Time I Got Yelled At on a Plane

I’m back in Beantown.  Yay!

I realized this week that there are a lot of things that get under my skin about airports and airplanes.  And the people in both!  I probably realized this a lot earlier than this week, but this is just when I decided I would blog about them.

Here you go, a nice little break from my recipes, workouts, etc.

Ten Airport/Airplane Pet Peeves

  • Girls that get decked out for travel.  How can it possibly be comfortable to make your way through the airport in heels and a short skirt?  I understand heels for those traveling for work reasons whom perhaps didn’t have the chance to change.  But for looks?  REALLY?  I once saw a girl wearing strappy heels that tied all the way up her leg.  Those really must be a b*tch to take off in the security lines!
  • Speaking of security lines, what about the people who STILL don’t understand the rules that go along with them?  C’mon people.  I know they are a huge pain, but it’s been over a decade.  Put your liquids in the right size container, take your laptops out of your bags, and get with the times.  Oh yeah, and stop holding up the entire line behind you.
  • People who walk at a snail’s pace.  Don’t you have a plane to catch?  Get out of the way!  Or I’ll run you over with my suitcase.
  • People who think the rules apply to everyone but them!  If strollers need to be checked, um, that means you too, mother dearest.  If everyone else has to take their jackets off while going through security, you cannot keep yours on and zipped to your neck.  And so on.
  • Baggage claim crowding.  If everyone would just take three freaking steps back, everyone would be able to see the luggage!  There’s a concept.  The same goes for the suitcases as you disembark from the plane.  You know, the ones they put away instead of storing in the overhead bins.  Is there really a need to crowd everyone right at the front of the line?  Take a step back!
  • People who sprawl on the plane and take up your entire seat, leg room, etc.  You only paid for one seat, you know.
  • This is one of my favorites.  When someone who clearly has a seat at the back of the plane (like 38C kind of back of the plane) finds it necessary to pause at every single row on the plane.  Do you really need to stop, squint, and look at what number row you are at until you get to your seat?  Way to hold up the line!  Plus, I assure you, row 38 did NOT magically get moved up between rows 3 and 4 for this flight only.
  • Along the same lines, when the guy sitting at the back of the plane puts his carry on luggage at the front.  Are you that lazy you can’t carry it all the way back?  Does the guy in row 2 really want to stow his bags near the bathroom and then walk all the way back to the front of the plane, bumping into everyone else walking in the opposite direction just because of someone else’s rudeness/laziness?
  • Over-excessive recliners.  I’m gonna kick you.
  • People who bump into you as they come on down that aisle, without so much of an inkling to apologize.

Today on the plane, the guy sitting next to me asked me if I could please excuse him while he got up to look for something he left in his bag.  Sure, not a problem.  I stood up (I was in the aisle seat) and moved out of the way so he could get to the overhead compartments.  He rummaged around for a good two minutes, shrugged his shoulders, and then sat back down.  As we were buckling up, he said, “I was supposed to wear one of those mask things, but I guess I can’t find it.”

Awesome.  I spent the rest of the flight curling up in the other direction as he sat there, picking his nails and breathing into my space.

If I get sick, I’m gonna be pissed.

Honestly though?  NOT the weirdest thing that’s happened to me on a plane.

Cue one of my most awkward moments of all time.
(And I’ve had a lot).

Back in May I was on the way home from a work trip in Myrtle Beach.  I was on my connecting flight from Charlotte and all settled in a middle seat toward the front of the plane.  Before we took off, the flight attendants decided that the man sitting in one of the exit rows, aka the you are responsible for helping the entire plane survive in case we go down row, was unfit for the job.  And they switched his seat with the man sitting in the aisle seat next to me.  Obviously.  Apparently it was my lucky day!

Now let me just say that I got a weird sense about this “unfit” man from the minute he sat down.  First off, he smelled terrible.  A lovely combination of B.O. and booze.  He was definitely drunk already, and his shirt was NOT touching his pants, so you can imagine the view I had.  After he sat down, he immediately started rummaging through his backpack like he was feeling for something at the bottom of the bag.  But he never took anything out.  Weird, right?  Of course my crazy mind automatically thought, “What is down there?”  Also he kept popping pills out of an Alka Seltzer bottle!  I think popped five of ’em until he realized he ran out of whatever he was taking.  At this point, he started tonguing the bottle.  Yes, licking the rim of the bottle.  GROSS.  As if that would magically make some more Alka Seltzer appear.  THAT was pleasant.

Moving on.

The flight attendants began making their safety announcements, and “the unfit” (let’s call him that from now on) started LAUGHING under his breath.  “Heh heh heh, heh heh heh.”   Um, what is so funny about the flotation cushions and air masks in case we crash!?  Meanwhile, he hadn’t stopped fidgeting around in his backpack (he actually threw it in the aisle at one point and the flight attendant had to come speak to him about keeping his bags properly stowed beneath the seat in front of him) and he had started sweating profusely.  During takeoff, he even started muttering “This is going to be an experience” over and over under his breath.

Okay.  Cue official freak out time.  Was this man a terrorist!?  I was panicking, but didn’t want to make a scene, so I stayed put in that middle seat pretending to read my book.  The unfit settled down a bit after take off, until the random moment that he swiped his backpack from under the seat and stormed to the front of the plane.  Yes, he actually bee-lined for the cockpit.  At that moment, I literally thought it was the end.  The flight attendants brought him back to his seat, scolded him that he under no circumstances was allowed to go to the front of the plane, and that was that.  The flight attendant also leaned over to me and said, “M’am, if you need any assistance, please press this call button right here.”  Awesome.

You think it’s bad so far?  Keep reading, please!

At this point in the flight, the flight attendants were coming through the aisles with the drink cart.  Unfit man lurched into the aisle and asked for two beers.  “No, under absolutely no circumstances are we allowed to give you an alcoholic beverage.”  The unfit got all huffy and settled for a Coke.  As the flight attendants made their way toward the back of the plane, this crazy guy started leaning into my seat and actually spilled his drink on me.  Clearly by this point I had lost every ounce of patience I had in me.  I raised my voice a little and told him he was in my space and asked him to please sit up.  The crew had been keeping their eye on him so one of the women came back over to me and asked, “M’am is everything alright?”  “Yes,” I said, “Just a spill.  Do you think we could have some extra napkins?”

Brace yourselves!

As the flight attendant left to go get those extra napkins, I looked over at the unfit and realized he was fuming and angrily staring me down.  Literally GLARING.  He then proceeded to stand up, point his finger in my face, and yell at me in front of the entire plane (8 co-workers included) over and over again.  “YOU ARE THE RUDEST LADY I HAVE EVER MET!  You are SUCH a SNOT.  You TATTLE-TALE!”  All up in my face the entire time.  My finger immediately pressed that help button and what was my first reaction after that?  I started CRYING.  Yep.  Go me.  How embarrassing!  Really, Athena, you started crying?  Yup!  These eyes of mine filled up with tears and everyone watched as the flight crew had me move my seat to the one open seat in the back of the plane (why didn’t I do that earlier?!)  And of course I was struggling because I was shaking with about a thousand things in my hands – ginger ale, book, jacket, laptop bag, etc.

Picture that whole scene.


Oh, and I SWEAR that I didn’t exaggerate any of this for blog entertainment purposes.

I ended up having to give the airline (US. Airways) my contact information in case the police wanted to use me as a witness.  Nobody ended up calling me, but I can’t believe this actually happened to me.  Actually, I can.  It’s funny now.  But definitely wasn’t at the time!

Question of the Day: 

What are your biggest airport/airplane pet peeves? 

Do you have any crazy stories like mine!?

Coming Soon!

Good morning everyone!

I am currently en route back to Boston.  Hooray!

Just a quick little post to let you guys know what I have in store for you over the next couple of days.

Saturday night I hosted a little get together for my friends from home.  It turned into a bigger party than I thought!  Tim was wonderful and helped me prepare and make sure I had enough food to serve everyone.  Even though he told everyone he did it all by himself.

On the menu (aside from the chips, pretzels, etc);

  • Party Meatballs
  • Tim’s Spinach & Artichoke Dip
  • Stuffed Bacon & Bleu Mushrooms
  • French Bread Bruschetta with Brie
  • Tracy’s Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
  • Shannon’s Apple Cider Cupcakes

Holy yum to all of the above.

Perhaps not the healthiest of options, but as always, I encourage everything in moderation!

Individual recipes coming soon.  🙂

Also, this Sunday I will be working at the Healthy Living Fair at the Oak Square YMCA.  It starts at 9:15 after the Annual Oak Scare 5k.  Not only will the race be a great community event, but the healthy living fair will have a lot of cool booths and tables.  Including yours truly at the instructor table showing off some sweet moves with medicine balls, body bars, exercise bands, and spin bikes.  Do it!

Here’s the press release:

Oak Scare 5k – A Reason to Run

Sunday, October 30th 2011

Oak Square Y | 615 Washington St | Brighton, MA 02135

Run, walk, or wheel in support of the Oak Square YMCA in this fun annual community tradition. Wear your costumes, and join us for the health fair!

Registration & Number Pick-Up: 7:30 AM
Race: 9:00 AM
Health Fair: 9:15 AM
Adult Entry:
Youth Entry:
Family Entry: $35

You can register here or contact Sara Nelson for more information at 617.787.8678.

Stay tuned for more posts about everything I just mentioned, as well as the giveaway winner I am announcing tomorrow.  Last day to enter the contest – just click here!

Now go have a great Thursday!

Greetings from Memphis!

Hey guys!  Sorry for the late post.  I know I’ve been off my usual posting schedule, but squeezing in blog time on the road is tough!  I’m writing from Memphis tonight.  Anyone ever been to Memphis?  It’s really cool here!

For dinner we headed down to Beale Street to explore a little bit.  It’s pretty much a whole street of bright lights, beer, bbq, and blues!  And crazy outfits and concert goers tonight, with the Chris Brown & T-Pain show at the convention center down the street.  We ate at the B.B. Kings Restaurant & Blues Club.  Here’s my overall review:

  • Service:  Not so great
  • Atmosphere:  Loud, but what you expect with live blues.  Very fun vibe.
  • Food:  Mine tasted fine, but some of my colleagues said their ribs/bbq options were just so so.
  • Beer:  Their own wheat brew was delish.
  • Overall consensus:  Great for music and some beers, not for top-notch food and good conversation!

On my plate tonight?  The Louie salad which consisted of chopped mixed lettuce with shrimp, tomatoes, cucumbers, black olives, and boiled egg with zesty Louie sauce topped with parsley and a side of lemon wedges.  And two Blues Brews.  AND pretty much a whole plate of fried pickles.  Does anyone else out there love fried pickles as much as me?!  Last night on the road usually equals a little bit of indulgence for me!  I was good the rest of the week.

Speaking of being good so far while traveling this week, I’m adding another tip to my healthy living on the road post yesterday.

Find a nearby grocery store!  Yesterday Colleen and I had another workout sesh at the gym (45 minutes on the elliptical followed by 15 minutes of abs and stretching) and afterward we found the local Kroger’s grocery store.  When traveling, I recommend requesting a microwave and refrigeration in your hotel room.  This way, if you stop at the local grocery store, you can stock up on some healthier options (which usually require refrigeration).  We knew our hotel didn’t have the best options at continental breakfast, so we wanted to get some yogurt, oatmeal, and some other things.


Definitely helped keep me in check for the week.

I’m looking forward to being home tomorrow!

P.S.  Don’t forget about my giveaway!  In case you missed it, I’ve extended the deadline to enter until Friday.  Good luck 🙂