I had a flight of about four hours Friday night, and ended up next to a guy who couldn't stop talking. I enjoy a conversation and music more the average person but find it hard to explore four hours worth of nuance on the topic of 80s rock bands. My knowledge of acts like Cheap Trick and Billy Squire is paltry but is still much greater than my curiosity about them. I cannot remember when a conversation actually made a flight seem longer, but this one did.
For the next flight, a mercifully short hop from Phoenix to San Diego, I boarded after my buddy and co-worker Bill who, it turned out, was seated in the window of the same exit row with my aisle seat. In the middle seat was a man I'd never met. As I took my seat, both Bill and this stranger already had their books out and were engrossed in reading.
As I sat down, I leaned forward, looking back into their faces, and said, "Uh, were you guys just going to read the whole flight? Because I was kind of hoping that we could sing campfire songs together to help make this flight go faster."
The poor guy beside me barely looked up from his book, made a smile that very quickly turned into a grimace of fear, and then quickly tucked his head back into his book. He didn't say a word for the entire flight. Left free to read my book, it made me wonder why I hadn't thought of this 5 hours earlier.