Flying Over I-95 N. With Mr. Dandy. (Part II of III)

airport-planes-aerial

I’m sitting, at the gate. 6 am.

Slumped in the seat, I unstrap the day-to-moment: alarm, bleary-eyed 4 am shower, the pack-up, the last once-over of the room, the tip for the cleaning lady, the hotel checkout including erasure of the $18.95 wifi overcharge, tip for the bellman, cab, boarding pass, security and of course, the slow march down the corridor with the bag. The bloody bag, wheels now up, exhausted from the trek, is resting peacefully.

Sigh. It’s ok.

I twist in the ear buds, find Today’s Chill playlist and turn inward, deep into the Head.

30 minutes till boarding.

There’s a stir in the waiting area. Ladies chattering.

Hair gelled and swept back. Fitted black sport coat. White starched shirt. Skinny black tie. Slim fit, boot cut, stone-washed jeans. European style boots, fine polish. Accessorized with a smart brown leather case, Louis Vuitton-like with a fancy French handle like Porte-Documents Jour. As he passes by check-in, there’s a whiff of Tom Ford oud wood eau de perfume which fills the waiting area with its rose wood, cardamom, and tonka bean alchemy. Ladies swoon, now fully under the spell.

He takes the empty seat next to me, and sets the Porte-Documents Jour neatly on his lap.

I slide my bag under the seat, out of sight. Jesus. Mr. Dandy had to sit here?

I close my eyes. Shift in my seat. Can’t find a sweet spot, this seat cushion where 53 million travelers sat before me. Ass to manufactured steel. I shift uncomfortably.

Mr. Dandy sits with his hands cupped one over the over on top of his Porte-Document Jour. No ear buds. No books. Just sitting peacefully, absorbing the adoring lights on him, and oblivious to CNN blasting from the monitor overhead about Trump’s tweets, flooding in California and a Man who was told he was fat actually having 130 pound tumor.

Sigh. It’s not ok. Really.

Down 15 lbs, there’s been casualties. Jacket is oversize, cuffs below wrist, sleeves invisible. Shoes, scuffed, dusty and oversize, callouses forming on baby toes, left and right. Belt synched up on pants to hold them up, waist band bunching up front – sweat pants really, not fitting as relaxed-fit Chinos were designed – and all nicely rumpled from a bad fold job.  Shirt would fit a thick necked wrestler, but on me, pooching in the front, tail untucked in the back.  Underwear, black gotchees, hanging loosely.  Socks, over-the-calf, somehow too tight, pinching legs. Unshaven, with 2-day bristle, but nothing cool about the sharp grey-black splotchy stubble rounding out the ensemble. Oh, let’s not forget the Old Spice (Old Man) deodorant and a splash of something akin to pungent sticky, insect repellent.

The attendant makes the boarding call.  Dandy stands and walks to the gate, all eyes locked-on.

I sit up, tuck in my shirt tail, thinking that will clean this up, and drag my carry-on, which has awakened with its wailing. Wow, what a f*ing mess. 

Melvv cues up on my Favorites with “Not Me“:

I keep falling down when I stand on my feet
Feeling like a clown when I say what I mean

Screw it. Let it all go. Middle Aged Man, is going sagging. Really, like who cares.

Take off belt, let pants sag, let the black gotchees and crack hang out. Going Street.

Like who cares, right?


Notes:

Comments

  1. Reblogged this on O LADO ESCURO DA LUA.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. You know that a picture, one picture, is worth a thousand words, right?

    Like

  3. I loved the picture, David. And the story is classic Kanigan; exposing/sharing the wounds of the less-than-perfect. I really enjoyed it. This is why your blog will stay on my daily newsfeed, even when I’m on a blogging break. 🙂
    I can’t tell but, based on this story and my own experience, I guess a lot of people wobble along a fine line between hoping no-one cares and wishing for a morsel of more appreciative attention.

    Liked by 4 people

  4. Wait…is this a fabulous description of Willy Loman, or are we reading about you? If the former, you have given my mind’s eye a perfect image. A thinner you? Hardly fits the description – even with the carry on desperate for retirement.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. so funny, the contrast between you two, and i’m quite sure he might not be so perfectly buttoned up and put together underneath his facade. funny, the description of your suitcase, with the wobbly wheel, is very similar to your description of yourself. )

    Liked by 1 person

  6. A Dino walking up in the present day.
    (If you tilt the picture towards right, the outline formed makes it look like a Dino)

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Mr. Dandy had me laughing, and thinking about the way we all used to “dress up” for those flights, or airport appearances. Times have changed, and I’ll opt for comfort. Every time.

    That being said, I really enjoy the people-watching, and try to imagine the life stories that cannot be camouflaged. I’m betting yours are better than his.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. 12 years, 500,000 miles were exactly summed up in these few lines…men and women dragged from home, from sleep, from the comfort of knowing who they are and where they are for their jobs that require them to be strangers and not. I’m off the road now but can tell you that Inwould rather be sitting next to you than the rooster dandy. Be well and sleep in soon.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. :0))))) We’ve all been there. Great post by the way!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I see the dinosaur! And I can so relate to: a lot of people wobble along a fine line between hoping no-one cares and wishing for a morsel of more appreciative attention.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Ahhh! I’ve noticed as I age i can pretty well wear anything because I have discovered the cloak of invisibility! Age! It’s almost as if, being anything over 40 something makes me nothing to see no matter what I wear. 😀

    Love your story-telling!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Olga Kanigan says:

    Time to retire the bag Dave.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Oh dear David. The slippery slope. May have to report you to Susan: this attitude needs correcting immediately before it’s too late.

    Probably already is.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Ahhhh, David. I’d much rather sit near you and your authentic, true self than a perfectly coifed and dressed mannequin. Honest.

    Liked by 2 people

  15. I’m a sucker for an Old Spice man.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Been there, done that. Loved the story telling.
    My guess will be Mr. dandy is in mid to late 30s and a pain to sit next to, on a long flight!!

    Liked by 1 person

  17. I’m with you on the “Who cares?” attitude. I’d rather be comfortable. Besides, just think of the time Mr. Dandy must spend trying to keep up the image. And do we even want to have a conversation with someone who spends so much time on his looks. (Haha – I can hear the younger crowd saying, “Conversation? Who wants to talk? Just bring on the action.”)

    Liked by 1 person

  18. First off, great writing! Really good! And I think you are right, everyone is so caught up in their own story and their own insecurities and pain, that they probably don’t care if your pants are sagging or your wheels are falling off your luggage! I mean, they will definitely hear you coming and of course will get a whiff of your insect repellant as you pass by and even have a side glance at your crack, but at the end of the day, Mr K, they won’t care! Ha 😬😀 Might go street myself! 😝

    Liked by 1 person

  19. You? Going Norge-Man? Not in a million years.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. i’ve gone the other direction. I’ve reached a shape where nothing fits, and there is no such thing as tucking the shirt in. So I went and bought a Navy Blue sports coat.
    It helps. Because no matter how big a slob I might appear to be, and how badly everything else may fit… Hey, Navy Blue sports coat, man.
    Top that.

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Great writing David! As always, we felt like we were right there with you!

    Liked by 1 person

  22. You live dangerously man. Who bought you that ‘something akin to pungent sticky, insect repellent’? I hope it was you. I have that 4 am shower tomorrow. And if I’m lucky Dandy will fly north on Valentines. Loved it.

    Liked by 1 person

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  1. In lumina says:

    […] via Flying Over I-95 N. With Mr. Dandy. (Part II of III) — Live & Learn […]

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