I don’t mean fat people, although they also take up a lot of room, but a lot of them can’t help it. I’m talking about the people who seem to take up too much room deliberately, like it’s their right to do so, as old (not old-old, but, like me, old as in baby-boomer) white men (as they almost always are, and yes, I’m sorry, I know they’re an embattled minority and shouldn’t, like any other minority (or majority) be stereotyped, but tough, they can take it since they take up so much room) so often do.
I was in the bulkhead window seat just behind first class on my plane today, and I moved to the other side to get away from one of them (I could tell he was one of them by his voice alone), who was shouting cell-phone instructions to his minions. Then, once cell phones had to be turned off, he loudly asked the flight attendant if he could move to that (and he pointed) seat. She assumed he meant the seat next to me and said “Sure,” whereupon he proceeded to move himself up to first class. She put him in his place, as she also did a moment later when he crossed his legs (incongruously bare from his shorts to his kayak-sized loafers) out into the aisle.
He opened his newspaper two seats wide. Even his writing, as he proceeded to make an old-fashioned list on notebook paper, spilled over the lines. As soon as we landed, the cell phone came out again.
“Get me Shannon.”
“What? She’s not in today?” Exasperated sigh.
“I can’t believe she’s not in today. Okay. Call her at home and tell her to call me on my cell phone.”
Poor Shannon – he’s even taking up room in her house.