Monday, July 24, 2006

River Runs Thru It

I dunno why, but I really can't stay awake on planes. Try as I may, I rarely stay up past the announcement of the Very Important Announcement that explains all the safety features on the Airbus 319. On this flight, I got up to the part of the floatation device and the pull-cord, but blacked out during the demonstration. To this day, I'm not sure what the pull-string does. Since we'd be hurtling toward the sea at roughly 300 mph, I imagine that I'd pull the string and out pops a mini-bottle of Wild Turkey. Who knows? Not I.

Falling asleep is a good thing, and I don't mind; it's the perfect way to wile away the hours on a long flight. Every now and then though, when I'm totally out (out out as in REM sleep mode during Derivative Pricing class), my jaws go slack, and my mouth falls agape like a trapdoor. This used to be problematic on road trips with friends because I'd become a target for three-pointers using airline peanuts. That was a long time ago -- planes don't serve peanuts anymore. At any rate, the peanuts were helpful in that it prevented me from staying in mouth-agape-out-cold mode. These days, with no one to roust me, my mouth stays open. And sometimes (like 15 minutes ago), I wake up with a start as a stream of drool curls around the corner of my mouth. I usually catch these stealthy streams before it has a chance to go very far (foiled again! would've gotten away with it if it weren't for you pesky kids!), but today, the NORAD defense systems did not kick in on time. The dribble ran unabated past my chin before I was able to wake up. Worst part is, I instinctively tried to recover the errant stream with a sluuuurrrrrpt sound, but did nothing more than attract attention to myself. I imagined that everyone was looking my way, music scratching to an abrupt halt in a old time western saloon as the Stranger rides into town. For about 15 minutes, I stay motionless with my eyes closed, hoping that when I do open my eyes, I won't find the lady next to me pointing and laughing...

But life in the airplane returns to normal, and I sit in seat 10C writing this blog.

1 comment:

Marika said...

What a fabulous image...the tired businessman, sound asleep and drooling. It what gives us secretaries the energy to keep battling on...

I'm exactly the same though, I get close to an airport and start yawning. I once slept for 19 of the 23 hours it took to fly from New York to Sydney. I stepped off the plane feeling more refreshed than ever before.


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