Thursday, August 13, 2009

The Incident

It is our first flight, approximately 2 hours long. There are 2 seats on either side of the aisle, the kids and I are on the right side of the plane, with Josh across the aisle from us. The villain is sitting on the left side of the plane, window seat. He's wearing an "I heart New York" shirt, not to be confused with a shirt that says "I heart kids" because that would be the farthest thing from the truth.
And here's how it goes down...

So in my humble opinion, the kids are doing pretty good on this flight. Chattering and playing, coloring, putting puzzles together, etc. We don't need to break out the DVD player, so you know things are going okay.

The stewardess comes by and comments that they are behaving nicely. Then she moves on to the villain's row, and she seems to be talking with him for an extended amount of time. I can't hear what's going on, but Josh later relays that Mr. New York has asked if she can "do something" about the kids. Her end concession is to bring him earplugs.

Mr. New York wears said earplugs for the rest of the flight.

Kids behave like kids for the rest of the flight, fairly good in my estimation. Occasional whining, but mostly just normal kid behavior. Over the course of the flight, amongst other food they eat: Alex- 2 twizzler sticks, 1 dum-dum lollipop; Derek- 1 twizzler stick, 1 dum-dum lollipop. (Bear with me, this info will come in handy later in this mini-novel.)
Fast forward to the end of the flight. I am now sitting on the left side of the plane, while Josh takes a turn with A & D (the children, not the ointment). As we are taxiing into the airport, I hear Mr. New York begin to complain to the woman sitting next to him. It actually doesn't register with me right away that he is talking about us, but it eventually becomes obvious that he must indeed be. Things I overhear* him say:

* technically, "overhear" would be generous. I couldn't not hear because he is talking in a voice that certainly he intends me to hear

"That is just disgusting. They just stuffed those kids full of sugar and then I had to suffer through the flight listening to them."
"They need to teach those kids to respect the environment around them, not just throw candy at them."
"I can't believe I had to endure that for 2 hours."
And on, and on, and on. I get angrier and angrier. The woman beside him finally replies to his complaints by saying that she thinks their behavior was quite normal. Mr. New York says "Normal? You've got to be kidding me..." And then he starts in again with the disgusting, suffering, and disrespectful crap.
I can't take it anymore. My normally confrontation-avoiding self can't contain my outrage so I turn around and spew forth exactly what I'm thinking:
"How dare you talk about my family that way?! My children are behaving appropriately and you are incredibly rude."
Mr New York's clever reply: "I'm not talking to you."
Me: "Well I'm talking to you. I hope we're on your next flight sitting right behind you. I'll make sure my kids kick your seat. So sorry for your suffering."
(Obviously I'm not very good at taking the high road when I'm angry. And in retrospect, there were so many better things I could have said. I know because I ran through it in my head all day. Why can't I ever think of the clever stuff in the heat of the moment??)
We managed to avoid further altercation for the rest of the taxi. The lady sitting next to Mr. New York engaged Alex in some conversation and thanked her for being entertaining. She had enjoyed watching her play and color.

We leave the plane. I'm still angry.

I get a bread bowl with lobster bisque.

I feel better.

Mr. New York didn't know that when I get hungry, I get angry.

Josh knows.


Jen McD said...

Good for you! He was a tad bit cranky. The earplugs should have done the trick, I think he just wanted to complain.

ohhh - I would be upset. Next time tell him you wish the McDaniel boys were sitting next to him! HA, that'll teach him

Rachel said...

Maybe he was just jealous that he didn't get any candy too. He was a jerk. Once, on a road trip we had to stop for a potty break for Collin and the gas station dude wouldn't let us use the bathroom. That's when I taught Collin, "mean man." He said it for twenty miles. I'd have taught the kiddos a more choice phrase for that dude. Maybe something more interesting that FAA could stand for.

Annie Pennington said...

GOOD GRIEF! I can't believe how FLIPPIN' RUDE THAT MAN WAS! I'm proud of you for telling him off!!! YAY ERIN!!!!!!!!!!

Sunk Costs said...

You tell him!! What a total jerk.

Lord help any children that nasty man ever fathers.

Heather and Scott said...

Not one for confrontation myself, I would have been FURIOUS too! Of course, I probably would've made my hubby say something...or might not have been so nice with my words.

Gassid Boys said...

That was great!! Just wish I would of been on the plane to tell the guy he obviously does not have children, and if he does have children, he doesn't enjoy them!! Jaaf read the post and said, "Oh, I miss the Schores!"