Ghandi said, “Confession of errors is like a broom which sweeps away the dirt and leaves the surface brighter and clearer.” Here is my most recent attempt. Perhaps a Dyson is more nearly in order for me than a mere broom.
Following is a shameful little exchange I had this morning with my stunning looking young flight attendant (you can be sure it’s nothing of a risqué nature.) I am happily married and have been for twenty-four years now to a brilliant and interesting woman who loves me dearly, as I do her, and who cares if I fall down and break a leg in the shower. But, however happily situated we all are in our relationship statuses (stati?) it seems most people would still like to think we are a commodity someone would be willing to buy. I have occasionally joked (not in earshot of my wife) that monogamy is easy when you have a physique like mine and a handsome nose to match. Still, one would not mind a temptation once in awhile just for the sake of ego.
Our hotel here in Richmond, VA offers flight crew members a coupon for a free breakfast. It’s a pretty good hotel and despite landing after midnight I dragged my tired carcass downstairs with minutes to spare before they stopped serving (free is free after all). And free being free I ordered the “hired-hand / farm-boy / lumberjack” special which was comprised of two eggs scrambled, three strips of bacon, wheat toast with butter and jelly, and American fries (Starbucks coffee, too.)
I was absolutely luxuriating in my bounty when my lovely slim flight attendant appeared and placed her order at the counter. She got her tiny container and a small glass of water and walked over to give me the minimum obligatory hello required by law of one flight crew member to another in such situations. Looking down at my loaded plate she smiled sweetly and said “my, what did you get?” It is amazing how much subtle meaning and judgement can be conveyed with the simple two-letter word “My.”
She might, if she wanted, make a good dental hygienist for she had chosen to begin this conversation just at the moment I had taken a large bite of toast (and okay, bacon and eggs and potatoes). I, stuck like a squirrel with a cheek full of acorns, sputtered and swallowed, and, at length emitted a veritable geyser of toast crumbs onto the table. Stammering, I finally got out, “the works, I guess, and you?” She giggled what I thought was a rather inappropriate giggle and said, “oh, I just got the egg whites and spinach.” She obligingly held out her clear plastic container holding what appeared to be one scrambled egg white (baked likely, if that is somehow possible) and one single leaf of raw spinach. I nodded and smiled and wished her well. My internal monolog ran somewhat differently.
Katlyn (not her real name) has, over the last two days been chatted-up and given the phone number / business card of more than six male passengers. She has been slavishly catered to and complimented by an equal number of gate agents and pilots. She is practiced in using her God-given attributes to their full advantage which is, after all, what we all aspire to do.
I have, on the other hand, received exactly no overtures from the opposite sex save the offer of a somewhat “pre-owned” lollypop from a four-year old girl who came on board with her mother. I respectfully declined. Life must be very different for a beautiful young woman. I’m not saying it’s better, mind you. We all have our crosses to bear I suppose. I’m just saying it must be different.
After our encounter in the restaurant this morning I sat and thought (okay, brooded) about our discrepant breakfasts. There is much to be said for being attractive to the opposite sex (or same sex. This is the 2010’s after all.) But I find that I am pretty happy with my beautiful wife and in lieu of flattery will settle for the occasional used lollypop – and bacon. Bacon is awfully good. The little girl on the plane did smile nicely after all, and those guys who gave Katlyn their numbers were probably jerks anyway.
So, Ghandi, confession may indeed be liberating, but apparently there is no contrition in mine. I will meditate on that.
The Embellishment – One would imagine that I have exaggerated the paucity of Katlyn’s breakfast. I must report, however, that that part of the story was entirely true, as was the enormous size of my breakfast. The misleading part of the story is an impression I may have given you about Katlyn’s personality. I have led you to believe that she is a vapid, self-absorbed, stuck-up girl. In yet another of God’s little injustices she is, in fact, kind, intelligent, friendly and really quite humble. It’s just not fair!