Wednesday, January 28, 2009

The Shame Of It All

Back from NYC where the cold wind was like bamboo canes slashed across the face. And I share a story that starts off with me looking like I'm laughing at the disadvantaged but ends with egg on my bamboo-reddened face.

So I take my window seat on Jet Blue-- more legroom, slightly more economical, cable TV, no headphones-- and then a woman heads towards the aisle and, before she sits down, guides her mentally challenged mature son to squeeze in between us. Okay, we're all God's children. I'm no better and no worse than anyone else(except for the Belgians). But I'm not going to lie. My mind was whirring with worst-case scenarios. What if he drools? What if he elbows me? What if he freaks out when the plane takes off? What if there's turbulence? The more these thoughts kept popping into my head, the more I worried about how I'd react if there was some kind of uncomfortable situation.

And then I knocked my drink over the guy.

I don't know how it happened. I reached for the Coke can and it slipped from my grasp. There were only a few drops left in it but they spattered across the guy's leg as it made it's way to the ground. I gave him an apologetic look as I tried to grab at it. But then I had to tug at my seatbelt so I could bend down and fumble around under the seat to retrieve it.

The look the guy gave me said it all. He couldn't believe he had to endure the rest of the journey seated next to me....

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