Monday, September 25, 2006
Flying demands a certain reverence from me. Stephen King once said that he believed that planes were kept in the air because they each contained enough people that feared they would fall, and the collective wishing kept them up. Sounds good to me. And I’m definitely one of those wishing -for a safe takeoff, a safe flight, a safe landing. You won’t see me making jokes or being too playful on a flight. It’s a somber affair, ladies and gentleman, and it commands a certain frame of mind. Maybe because the very first time I flew was right after September 11 (yeah I’m a late-in-life-first-time flyer, I know), and I took with me a printout of the most wanted terrorists. Armed soldiers patrolled the airports with guns slung across their backs. My boss told me I was “brave” for not canceling my vacation. It was not normal circumstances for a first flight, that’s for sure. Or maybe it’s just my fatalistic personality. I don’t think of myself as being negative, really, on the contrary I consider myself an optimist -but a realistic optimist, nonetheless. Why am I scared as we are driving down an insanely steep and curvy mountain road in Arizona? Because in my mind’s eye I can see with perfect clarity how The Kev could turn to say something to me at just the right (wrong) second as a deer or something steps into the path of our vehicle. He could panic, hit the brakes, slide off the shoulder, overcorrect, and there we are - flipping end over end to our untimely deaths. Death on vacation. How ironic. Yeah it sounds morbid, I know, but this is how my brain works, folks. It’s the curse of an imagination that is in tip-top shape from years and years of practice. So, if you see me on a plane and you think something’s wrong, don’t worry. I’m just trying to keep us in the air.