Sunday, April 20, 2008

Lester B. Pearson International Airport, 2 p.m.

Every road-trip to the air-port turns the little cogs in my (way hungover) head more than the the last.
Today, I sit in my uniform green vinyl seat, carefully positioned around the perimeter of the gate (to which I always arrive either obnoxiously early or last-minute late) sip my Starbucks and cast my judgments upon all my fellow passengers.

First off, I try and figure out why in god's name anyone who doesn't live on a farm, or have some billionaire business job, is flying to Edmonton. When I realize everyone is either taking care of business or visiting family, I find reasons to poke fun.

*Disclaimer: This experiment is for observational purposes only, no feelings are meant to be hurt in its publication.
Up on the docket today:
A grim foreshadowing of what I hope not to be fifty years from now.
Old country bumpkins, dressed in plaid and army-print ballcaps.
A cute old couple sits, clothes and faces wrinkled on the edge, slouched into their seats with their flood pants and long socks, and extra-support shoes. Everything about their mannerisms mimics each other-legs crossed left over right, glasses, hands folded neatly on laps, short but neatly kept hair cuts-they must be so (many years) in love.
Everyone looks old and out-of-touch, old faded jeans not worn ironically, ballcaps ballcaps everywhere, army print on exactly 6 passengers of the 26 in my line of sight. Oops, make that seven. Last time I checked, that trend died with the German army in 1945.

A four person family- what are they doing in Toronto? Perhaps a connecting flight from a rural area?
Dad's wearing a Disneyland tee-shirt, track pants and runners, mom's got matching reflective (ugh) track pants, runners, and a strange baseball t-shirt that says "Dry is not an option"- oh god, I think it's a Disneyworld shirt too. Yep, definitely heading home from Florida. The older of the two mussy-curled gurls has green army pants (!), brown shirt, and skate shoes. She's gonna be a little basketball player with attitude, the way she rolls her eyes and slouches. Her little sister's the princess, in a pink shirt and matching pink army pants, and Kim Possible (more Disney) kicks.
Typically Canadian, mom's passing out Timmie's from a bulk bag..WEST JET FLIGHT 197 GOING TO EDMONTON WITH CONNECTIONS TO KELOWNA AND VICTORIA, READY TO BOARD IN TEN MINUTES. PLEASE MAKE SURE THAT YOU HAVE YOUR ID AND BOARDING PASS READY FOR PRESENTATION. Hoochie mama just took a seat across from the old farts, tiiite dark jeans (apple bottoms maybe), a tighter, too-short t-shirt, metallic blingin' rings, bracelets, and earrings that would surely stretch out any normal lobe. She's got a bikini top under her shirt (uh, wrong flight, hun?). Her braided ponytail isn't really a 'tail' per se, rather its like a pineapple sprouting out the top of her head-higher than cheerleader-high.

A couple sports fans decked out in blue jays polos and MORE BALLCAPS, carrying backpacks and cellphones on belts. Beer bellies and crossed arms, these are THOSE GUYS, the annoying ones who hang out at sports bars, drink bud light, and eat mild wings. They probably just came for the big game. Too bad they wasted their time on the Jays.

A potentially gay business man has just seated himself straight across from me. Khakis and a white, long-sleeved dress shirt, but the heads-up? Perfectly bald head and a white sweater draped over his shoulders, and tied model-perfect in that Ralph Lauren prep-esque manner. He smiles, almost too politely when he notices my subtle upward glances are directed at him (oops). ANYONE WITH SMALL CHILDREN, PETS, OR SEATED IN EXIT ROW, WHICH IS ROW TEN FOR THIS FLIGHT, PLEASE PRESENT YOUR ID AND BOARDING PASS AT THE GATE. GENERAL BOARDING WILL COMMENCE SHORTLY. The old couple are clutching each other tight, the young pink army girl is whining to her mom, and I'm sitting, waiti....LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR YOUR PATIENCE, WE INVITE ALL GUESTS IN ALL ROWS. PLEASE HAVE YOUR BOARDING PASS READY FOR PRESENTATION, AS WELL AS YOUR GOVERNMENT-ISSUED PIECE OF PHOTO IDENTIFICATION. THANK YOU FOR CHOOSING WEST JET IN YOUR TRAVEL PLANS TODAY.

Ah, and all the keeners line up. Hoochie mama's looking peeved in line, tugging at her jeans and pushing out her fat lower lip. I must be 30, give or take a couple years younger than the caucus of this flight. Passengers are clutching their Tim Horton's for dear Canuck life.
Alas, the line is shortening, my time has come to join the masses. But now you know next time to hit Terminal Three, watch your back, cause I just might be watching it too...