I’m not a fan of LAX. Last time I flew it was out of quiet, quaint Long Beach Airport. Okay maybe quaint isn’t quite the right word. Is anything really quaint in lovely ghetto and smog infested Long Beach, California? California’s Long Beach Airport was so quiet and small when I flew out to Colorado Springs in April; it was really lovely compared to the hustle, bustle and cigarette sweaty crowds of Los Angeles International Airport. I haven’t flown out of LAX in three years and now I remember why. That is I mean,l besides the fact it’s a two hour drive from my home. That’s two hours without traffic, and I have to be at the airport by 10:30, so early morning commuter Los Angles traffic I was well prepared to hit. It actually was not as bad as I expected though. I even had time to stop in the city I was born in, Whittier, California, and grab a iced latte at Starbucks. I also drooled over Tommy’s Hamburger’s (Best burger ever!) and Clearman’s Restaurant, our families favorite steak restaurant of all time, as I drove slowly past, on Whittier Boulevard. Traffic was a bit heavy once I crossed the L.A. County line, but I still made it to the airport long term parking with plenty of time; like three hours until my flight was set to depart.
I don’t mind getting to the airport early. I was prepared to research some horse racing past performances and decide who I would be betting on at the Las Vegas sports books. I was also planning to stalk Zooey Deschanel through her blog. Check it out, its addicting. As I wandered through the terminal towards my gate, I noticed one thing. I think I’m the only person at this airport typing on a lap top and not a iPhone. Maybe because this fucking airport doesn’t have free Wi Fi! What the H? Most coffee shops offer free Wi Fi if you buy a cup of Joe for four dollars, but I pay two hundred bucks to fly to Las Vegas instead of commuting there four hours in traffic and I can’t even get free Internet access? Annoyed I am.
Sigh, looks like next time I’m back to driving for the next Vegas trip, it’s okay this time because for the wait in the airport I had podcasts and talk shows to listen to, there is even a Paul Byrom interview talking about all things Las Vegas, which seemed very appropriate! Flying to Las Vegas seems like it would be easy and so much more relaxing. In theory I guess that is true. I got up 6 A.M. with my heart set on going for a run this morning before I left. Didn’t happen. One cup of coffee later I was running late and had to head out the door with minutes to spare. Of course my boarding pass wouldn’t print, so I had to leave early enough to deal with that. Getting up at 6 A.M. if I had left right away I would already be in Las Vegas and I could have brought a Subaru’s worth of crap with me. I wouldn’t have to stress out about the restrictions about exactly which way to pack the alcohol I’m bringing with me (Wrapped in bubble wrap, in a sealed bag, in a box, in wrapping paper with a bow and a name tag written in cursive please. Okay maybe I made up that last part.) It annoys me that I can’t bring my cooler full of healthy snacks to keep in the room. Also, there is the fact that I know there is a Whole Foods located a mile from the strip and I don’t have a car to drive me there. Okay, yes I could take a cab if I really had a craving for sixteen dollar a pound cheese, but really? Do I need to pay for a ten minute cab ride to buy myself some French cave aged Raclette? If I say yes to that I really am going to hell for loving cheese in an un natural way.
So I actually arrived at the airport very early, yea me. This is nice as I don’t have to be one of those stressed out people at the gate, crying, pulling her hair out and getting wrinkles. Yes I’m talking about Ms Seattle in the queue in front of me. As soon as I got in line for South West I could see Ms Seattle was having issues. Her bright green hair was very frizzed out (Not used to So Cal humidly, I guess) her flannel was wrinkled and her cigarette and B.O. stench was wretched. Also ALL the contents of her three huge bags was spread out in disarray EVERYWHERE. Of course, I was told to get in line behind the North West’s mess. Obviously, I couldn’t put my two carry on bags up on the scale as her shit was every where. I tried putting my credit card and ID in the electronic computer and neither worked. No one working with South West would meet my eye and help me, I think they thought I was with Ms Seattle, maybe I was her social worker? How could I be with that girl? I dress like a Californian, long tshirt and leggings and my bags are from Victoria Secret and a Kielty backpack. Hippie’s can’t afford luggage like this! They spend all their money on drugs! So, in my eyes it wouldn’t look very likely that I would be traveling with this sweaty, green haired, flannel wearing hippie girl.
I guess I have to say boo for my first flight with South West as I had to wait for ever to get some help, but I wasn’t in a hurry and I had the best of Seattle to entertain me. So I didn’t mind waiting, really. Finally, after being slightly amused by hippie girl, I managed to catch the eye of a very nice employee and she printed out my boarding pass all business, still managing to glare at my life partner, I mean my hippie friend, who kept backing into me, also glaring at ME, while I had to inhale her stench.
I guess she spent all her money on pot, because the story I heard her telling the gate keeper (Worker? Whatever) was that her bags were over weight and she couldn’t pay extra so she was trying to throw away as much as her thrift store life as possible. I was a little entertained as I watched her throw out thrift store clothes, some bongs (just kidding, not really) a huge mirror (Why would you bring that on a plane? To admire your green hair?)500 flannels, hemp under ware and some hummus? The gate keeper kept asking her to move, she was obviously unpacking her bags and spreading the North West’s best all over terminal one, but she just kept saying
“I can’t! Cant you see I’m doing something here? Um, if I give you my Visa card will you go rent me one of those luggage carts?”
I swear, this girl, okay she was young (And obviously not bright, please don’t do drugs…) had just offered her credit card to a complete stranger! Mean while the gate keeper was urging the girl to move along as other passenger’s had flights to catch, hippie girl was shooting me dirty looks left and right with her sad, red, stoned eyes, I just wanted to check my bags and finish my beverages before going through security. I can see how in a normal situation, yes I would be stepping on this girl’s toe’s, being all up in her green haired business, but she was a mess! A dirty, smelly hippie mess every where! I just wanted to scream
“Yes, it is 100 degrees in Southern California, please buy some f ‘ing deodorant! Tom’s is all natural and they sell it at Whole Foods! They take EBT!” Finally my bag’s were taken, and I was free to go through security. I don’t fly often, and sometimes I feel like a complete embarrassment at airport’s, but at least today there was someone a bigger mess then me. Yea.
I’m finally, finally getting ready to board my flight to Las Vegas and I’m just wondering; why are there so many screaming, crying children? If there is one thing that does not belong in a Las Vegas Airport, it is screaming toddlers. This is why I packed the vodka. One Grey Hound on the rocks, please….