Flying North N.E. AA1263. With Track Suit.

An introvert’s sanctuary. Dallas / Fort Worth International Airport. The world’s 4th busiest airport. Giant footprint. Take trains between terminals. Get lost among the crowds, the lines, the heavy foot traffic. Near zero probability of seeing anyone you know.

I pass through security. No random check. No single coin in back pocket triggering body check and palm swab for explosive residue.

I walk.

I pass a line that spills out into the concourse, and down along the wall. Chick-Fil-a. How good can this really be? Didn’t realize Chick-Fil-a served breakfast. Make a mental note. Must try that. But can’t risk it now. Middle-aged thing sprouted out of nowhere. Stomach, formerly cast iron, now leaky.

I look for an overhead sign pointing me to the Admiral’s Club.  10 gates down. Texas does it big here too. Large (very) facility, high ceilings, a refuge for business travelers. Quiet. Soft lighting. Spotless bathrooms. Cushy leather chairs.

I walk.

I look down at my black sneakers. When your work life has more than ample amounts of stress, you de-risk all other elements.

Like my attire.

You don’t attract attention. Avoid stares. Avoid chance of conversation.

30+ years of business travel.  You could take snapshots, during each year of my travel as I age. But for the receding hair line, the thickening midsection, the dark bags under the eyes, and a different roller board, you would see the same Me.

Sport Coat. Dark.
Slacks with sharp crease.
Blue Shirt. Typically solid, maybe, maybe a stripe.
Black loafers, maybe lace-ups. Polished to high sheen.
Think mannequin at Brook’s Brothers.

I walk.

Today, I’ve decide to mix it up. You’re reading this saying: “How hard can this be?” Pretty damn hard.

4:30 a.m. at hotel before departing to airport. I’m sitting on the edge of the bed, agonizing over what to wear. Come on DK. Really?

So, here it goes.

Black Socks.
Black Lululemon stretch slacks, with skinny legs.
Black T-Shirt.
Black Ugg Sweat Shirt with Hoodie.
Black Addidas running shoes.
Think a casual Johnny Cash. Or Steve Jobs. But far less cool than both.

I walk out of the hotel room, take one last look around, and head down to the front desk. Anxious. Stomach doing backflips.

“Good Morning Mr. Kanigan” after lifting her head from the hotel reservation system. Was that an eye brow lift? Was that an up-down eye flick? 

I walk.

I’m approaching the Admirals Club.

I notice as I walk, my head is down, lessening the chance of recognition.

I walk through the entrance at the Club, neglecting to see the Club check-in on my right.

“Sir! Sir! Sir, you in Black!”

I look over my shoulder to see two attendants at the desk serving a short line. The two attendants and all of the guests standing in line turn to stare.

I feel a surge of heat rush up my body cavity to my face. I’m flushed.

I move into the right line, head bowed feigning attention to my iPhone messages. My line moves quickly. The other is stalled.

I reach the front of the line, handing her my I.D.

“Hey Sweetie. Good morning.  That’s one very fine leisure suit” which is followed by a soft chuckle from someone in the other line.

“That’s one very fine leisure suit.”

I turn away, walk into the club dragging my roller board.

“I don’t need this sh*t.”


Image: Airplane by x-inna

Comments

  1. Smiling… that’s what happens when you abandon a time tested routine. Skinny pants, David? My blogging hero, pillar of the financial world wears skinny pants? Please tell me it was some sort of auto-correct error. Please.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. ha ha haaaaa…… this is truly priceless. Hero Husband had NO problem after returning from the UK to terra firma (Europe) to get rid of his ‘business attire’ (shirt and tie at nearly all times). Now it stresses him out a bit when he is forced to wear a tie more than 3x per week….. Better times will come and you, the guy in black, will become ease into the ‘new look’. Fine article David! Keep your cool! But no sneakers just yet!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Laughing. So hard.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Black Lululemon stretch slacks, with skinny legs?

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Never easy to try something new. Kudos to you!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Who knew travel attire could be so amusing. Thank God you weren’t nabbed like the two girls in DC a year or so ago….https://wapo.st/2NVCAdW

    Liked by 3 people

  7. Unlike your other readers, I shall not mock you for trying to be comfortable on a decent-length flight.
    I will however, offer you kudos on sharing a vulnerable moment with us, your loyal following.
    Ok. Eff it. I can’t lie. I laughed.
    Lululemon, eh? Wouldn’t have pegged you as the sort to even own anything from their store!

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Good to hear that men, as well as women, sometimes agonize over what to wear.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. “I feel a surge of heat rush up my body cavity to my face. I’m flushed.” I know that feeling all too well…

    I wonder what your hockey buddies would think of your Lululemon pants…

    Thanks for the laugh!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Oh come on – I for one, am proud of you. And after 30 years of air travel, haven’t you learned that comfort trumps all else?

    Liked by 1 person

  11. i love every word of this as you lead us through your reasoning and thought process. kudos to you for dipping a toe in the water, even if you feel like you may have had a toe or two bitten off. good thing you had the skinny pants on, kind of like a wetsuit. )

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Oh I’m happy you mixed it up Mr K! Why would you keep doing the same thing? So boring. Go wild. Mary Oliver would be proud of you. 🙂 BTW Love your writing.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Anonymous says:

    The man on the move, took a momentary walk on the wild side…and the Rebel Yell, said More. More, More ahh that would be a NO… Ha!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Anonymous says:

    😉

    Like

  15. I’ll bet you looked way cool — like the Pink Panther’s wrestling buddy, Cato. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Back in the 8th grade mom bought me a orange sherbet colored leisure suit. I wore it with an orange shirt, white tie, white belt, and white shoes. I looked like a Dreamsickle.

    Liked by 2 people

  17. Agreed with your last line totally. Inappropriate. If living in Hawaii has taught me one thing, it is to accept people as they are. String bikinis up a not so flattering butt crack or shorts with white midthigh socks blend into the visitors landscape. I might do an inner eye roll, but keep it to myself. People have feelings, after all. 😘

    Liked by 2 people

  18. From skinny jeans over an expanding midsection …to orange sherbet coloured leisure suits with white accessories … to string bikinis up a not so flattering butt crack … the comments section from your readers on your posts is hilarious! It’s so funny to remember what we used to wear and then to think we thought it was cool back then! And tomorrow is T.G.I.F for all of us … hope your week was great and your weekend is even greater, Dave!

    Liked by 1 person

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