Monday, July 11, 2011


I think I’ve mentioned this before, but I do a fair amount of flying for business. And I like to think I have it down to a science. Or better yet, a series of rules that govern me from taxi to landing.

First, if it doesn’t fit into a carry-on, don’t bring it. Who needs underpants, life saving insulin and life saving hair gel? Not me and my three cubic inches of pack back!

Second, limit your pre-flight beers to 2. Bladders have a tendency to urgently need to “make” in that critical time between lift off and that double “ding” that indicated you may turn on portable electronic devices and shove your way to the lavatory.

Third, and this is the most important rule of all, never, ever allow Luca to leave his car seat. Now, I rarely have to refer to this rule, since 99.9999% of my flying is without my youngest son. But that doesn’t diminish the importance of this rule. In fact, every time I board a flight to California for a mindless series of meetings, I look at my seatmates and say, “Let’s just all make sure we don’t let Luca out of his car seat, shall we?” And then they hide behind their Sky Mall magazines.

When we all headed to Illinois last week, we knew it would be tough. But Diana had a lot more anxiety than me. She was worried our gleefully loud children would disturb our fellow passengers. But mostly she was afraid of Luca or Eli kicking the seats in front of them. I’m not sure why this was such a big deal for her. Maybe she was injured by a three year old on a flight to San Francisco. But she was determined to keep our boys’ feet away from the magazine racks and tray tables.

I, however, could give a crap. That’s flying folks. Sometimes you sit next to a super hot member of the opposite sex. Sometimes you spend 4 hours getting a lower back massage from tiny feet.

As soon as we sat down, Diana offered to buy our neighbors a glass of whisky to compensate for any seat kicking. They refused. But as soon as Luca shlumped back into his car seat, he thought to himself, “Heeeeeyyyy. This seat in front of me is the perfect distance for some kicking!” And he proceeded to kick and kick and kick.

The woman in front of him glared over the seat and Diana panicked. And broke rule #3. She let Luca out of his seat. And there was no getting him back. When the pilot announced we were diving into Cook Country, Illinois, he became a cat over a bathtub filled with ice cold water. I wondered if shoving him into the overhead compartment constituted child abuse.

Eventually we hit the tarmac while I held Luca in a bear hug. And then we began our adventure in Chicagoland. Or as I now like to call it, Humidityland.

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