Last week my wife and I returned home on a United Airlines flight from Phoenix to Chicago. I attended a wedding the previous evening and still had a general queasiness churning my stomach. Not an out of control hangover, more of a dehydrated (Arizona air generously taught me), danced-out, screamed-out state of body and mind - pure exhaustion. Needless to say, I only wanted a calm, relaxing flight with Elena (that is the name of my wife if you needed to put that together).
We sat down in our seats, mine on the aisle, hers in the middle. Okay, peace. Quiet. We were happy.
A gal one row in front of us yanked out her cell phone and pounded out a few numbers in fury (no, I didn't notice those details, I provided falsely for a more dramatic beginning). "Hey, mom. Yeah, mom." Okay, she was having a conversation with her mother, couldn't be more than a few minutes of assuring her mother of her safety and an "I love you," right? Oh wait, it was an argument.
The girl, dressed in hipster wear, earth tone pants and a white linen shirt (nothing against hipsters, just describing a human), with ratty hair and 1,000 accessories to match. She also wore sunglasses, which is code for "I'm hiding something" (tears, suspicious eyes, wandering eyes - or a vile conversation with mom), but the plane's public saw through the UV protection. Her voice popped up a few decibels as the conversation continued.
What was she talking to her mother about, you ask? Oh, just about moving a couch out of the house because some creature urinated on it. Blamed a litter box (a cat, not some creature, developing story...) for being out of place and then said he dad was a "lazy piece of sh*t"...demanding him to hire movers to "move the f--king couch" because her hands are too sacred to touch it. Then her paranoia arrived with an accusatory tone (naturally), yelling at her mother - "My bedroom door better be closed. Mother, mother! It better be closed when I get home. You better not have been in there." Save from a security camera, she'll never been able to validate her suspicions. Parents sounded evil - who could blame her?
What have we learned here, besides the character of this young woman? Think about it...she was in a plane with strangers, yelling into a little electronic device that translates a voice to Chicago, miles and miles away. Yet, she is still yelling in a plane, a confined space with children and tired humans, without shame and making everyone around her either cringe or slap her upside the head. I'd vote for the latter.
Ah, the cell phone. How awkward a device it can be, or at least the situations the phones put us in.
A few examples of our idiotic selfs and our cell phones (I certainly am guilty of some...):
- Elevator phone guy. This guy is the worst. Similar to the gal in the plane, this guy had such an important conversation that he risked the cell reception in the elevator. Can't lose that call! Instead, all other elevator passengers lose their patience and want to kick you in the head.
- Crying on the phone gal. I love walking on the street as a girl is balling her eyes out because the words from the phone are horrible or sad or depressing. I don't bother to smile. How dare she prohibit me from smiling! I love smiling at people on the street - it's my favorite.
- Bluetooth guy. If it were socially acceptable, which it should be, to yell at these people after they fool us with conversation, I would. I am standing next to you and you randomly start talking. Yet, I can't see that electronic leech attached to your head, probably giving you God-Knows-What cancer. I look like a dipstick when I say, "I'm sorry, what's that?" And if he wasn't arrogant enough, he points to his ear and gives a disgusted look. How dare I interrupt his Bluetooth conversation. Please, Bluetoothers are one step away from being homeless dudes.
- Can't get a signal guy. You really think if you walk 10 feet from where you aren't getting a signal that magically you'll be blessed with 3G coverage? You nearly bumped into everyone trying to get by on the sidewalk. On top of that, you look like a possessed chimpanzee with a magical banana.
- Texting is better than calling guy. Are you serious? What we accomplish over an hour texting session can be completed in about five minutes if we used the phone for its primary use - voice-to-voice. Instead of making the argument of "I can get more done if I am texting," try getting a conversation over and done with. Usually, gathering information from these serial texters is like pulling teeth...and I'm not a D.D.S.
- My phone is more important than our conversation guy. I'm very happy I arranged this meeting with you so you have time to text and send emails to others not in your vicinity, and just blatantly ignore me while looking at your cell phone screen. (Note: This also occurs in the personal realm and saddens me)
- Driving while texting guy. I hate you.
- Text before call guy. Similar to Texting is better than calling guy, but with a romantic tweak. Essentially, every girl will be able to tell if their potential mate is manly enough of a man. Does he call you first (which takes a sliver of confidence) or text you first (which should include a digital attachment of his balls in a coin purse)? The genius of this analysis lies within the simplicity. Take heed women of Chicago.
Cell phone, oh cell phone, thank you for making our lives more awkward. Let's remember we are social beings, but social behavior comes from facing someone's face, not reading letters on an inch by two inch LED screen (but the DROID and iPhones are so much bigger! Easy meatball).
Anyone care to share a fun cell phone/awkward story? Opening the floodgates...