September 24, 2008
The Biggest Ass
So in my dream Dante Alighieri, the greatest Italian poet and writer, comes back to life and he gets himself a literary agent.
Naturally the first assignment the agent gets him is to rewrite and update his greatest work: La Divina Commedia.
Dante is encouraged to concentrate on the section about "The Inferno," which depicts the suffering of those who are in hell.
"Danny," says his agent, "concentrate on the hell part of this because I can sell it as a movie. There's a good horror flick in this and Hollywood will eat this up. You know, souls burning for their sins . . . No exit. Combine the horror part of it with the title The Divine Comedy and this could be another J-Lo comeback movie. Ben Stiller can be her boyfriend in hell and naturally we'll get Bobby DiNiro to play the devil."
In my dream Dante (a.k.a. Danny), who hasn't been on earth since the day he died in 1321, comes to visit me to get my advice as to the place that best represents hell on earth in this, the year of 2005.
Without a second's hesitation I said Kennedy Airport, American Airlines Terminal #9.
In my dream Dante and I are transported to American Airline Terminal #9 and as we watch the thousands of lost souls milling around trying to get a boarding pass and get through security in time to catch their planes, Dante turns to me and says in a shocked voice, "This is far worse than the hell I envisioned when I wrote La Divina Commedia in 1310. What have all these poor lost souls done to merit this kind of horrible treatment?"
"They bought an airline ticket," I answered. It was worse two weeks ago when I tried to fly on a business trip. It was a nightmare . . . nightmare . . . a nightmare. With that I woke up and remembered the trip from hell.
It started in East Hampton two weeks ago Sunday. I was going to make a presentation for the advertising account of the British Virgin Islands on the island of Tortola. I had to catch a plane for San Juan and connect for a flight to Tortola. I missed that flight and every other flight on that trip because the airline business is so totally screwed up.
Since the flight to San Juan was at noon I decided to leave East Hampton at 7:30 a.m., giving myself plenty of time to catch my plane, or so I foolishly thought.
I even stopped off at the McDonald's in Manorville for my favorite treat, a delicious Sausage Egg McMuffin. Little was I to know that the McMuffin was to be the highlight of my trip.
Now I'm so old that I remember when getting on a plane was a pleasurable experience.
I'm so old I remember when American Airlines made money.
I'm so old I remember when United Airlines didn't have to try to screw their employees out of their pensions to stay alive.
I remember when American Airlines put a piano in its 747s so that you could enjoy your cross-country flight listening to some passenger, whose mother paid for piano lessons so that he could impress the other passengers by playing "Melancholy Baby." I remember when they served caviar and lobster in First Class and they would roll a cart with filet mignon and ask you if you wanted your steak rare or perhaps medium rare.
Then came deregulation. The government decided to stop fixing the prices of airline tickets. The airlines had to fend for themselves in the old-fashioned free enterprise system. Unfortunately the airlines were filled with boobs who couldn't figure how to survive in an unregulated world.
Add to that the security concerns after 9/11, and now a trip to any airport is a trip to hell.
I arrived at the airport two and a half hours before my flight. I still had to run to get on my plane in time. The airport was filled with thousands of people trying to get their boarding passes all at the same time.
Only five or six clerks were there to service thousands of passengers. Since most of the flights were overseas, one woman from American Airlines was just screaming, "You must have your passport ready."
She screamed at a young man standing in front of me, "Do you have your passport ready?"
"But I'm going to San Francisco," was his confused answer.
It took me one hour and 15 minutes to get a boarding pass, another 45 minutes at security, and then a dead run to my gate. So there I was, out of breath. I stumbled on board with my carry-on bags. There were more than 300 people on this thing called an Airbus — all going to Puerto Rico. It was a Sunday in May, why the hell would anyone want to go to Puerto Rico? I thought to myself.
I looked around and there was not a Puerto Rican in sight. Just these random people heading for Puerto Rico. So I stumbled down the aisle looking for 34A, my window seat. That's when I spotted her. She was a woman in her early 30s. She was big. Very, very big. But it wasn't her shoulders and breasts and waist that amazed me. It was her ass. Three quarters of her ass occupied seat 34B but the other quarter of her ass was on my seat, 34A.
She got out into the aisle so I could get into my seat.
I couldn't take my eyes off of her ass. Then she sat down and her ass was on my lap and hip. You must understand I was trapped in my seat. Then I started to think, should I introduce myself? Should I comment on it? Should I say, "Miss, that's one amazing big ass you have there. We're going to be riding for three hours and 55 minutes and it's clear I am going to be in constant contact with your ass, so let me tell you it is an amazing ass. It is the Godzilla of Asses."
My mind was racing. Should I ignore it? Should I try to synchronize my breathing with hers for maximum comfort? There was no way to bring down the armrest because her ass was in the way. I fidgeted for five minutes under her ass and finally found my seat belt.
We were about to take off when the pilot announced that the plane had a mechanical problem and we would have to wait for another plane to be brought out to take us to San Juan. Just enough time to miss our connection to Tortola. An hour and a half later I was on another plane with the same seatmate and the same ass. The flight was a nightmare. The woman, perfectly comfortable with the seating arrangement, spent the entire flight reaching into a Starbucks bag and eating cakes and buns. I was fearful that if her ass got any bigger I would be pushed out of the window and sucked out of the plane.
When we were a few minutes out of San Juan I realized that I have been married to the beautiful Judy Licht for 23 years and in all those years I haven't touched Judy's cute butt for the sum total of time I was spending touching this stranger's ass. The thought made me giggle uncontrollably and the woman stopped munching on cake to give me a dirty look.
When I got off the plane I realized that I had my Blackberry in my right-hand pocket that her ass was perched on. I said a thankful prayer that I hadn't received a message during that time. My Blackberry vibrates when I get a message and if it had gone off and vibrated under her ass at anytime during the flight I might be rotting in some San Juan jail or, if she liked it, my seatmate would have picked me up and carried me off in the same way King Kong had carried off Fay Wray.
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