United Flight 324

Every now and again, or rather, again and again and again and again I am subjected to the rather tiresome exercise otherwise known as flying.  The chore has become increasingly tedious as the mode of transportation has gone from a fairly selective to utterly pedestrian.  I am, in short, aboard the equivalent of a public bus 40 thousand miles above the ground.  The democracy of aviary travel is ruining my life.

This flight, in particular, has become particularly noteworthy.  Maybe it’s due to the fact I have woken up at 4 am, 1:30 am, and 3:30 am the past three days.  Maybe I’m being oversensitive.  But maybe, just maybe, this really is the flight from hell.
What I Am Currently Disliking (Strongly) About This Flight:

1.  There are two hours remaining.  
2.  Over the course of the last three hours I have been forced to listen to the child sitting next to me ask such questions as:
“Mom, why is she sitting here?” 
“Are we even moving?”
“Is my water going to be cold?”
And conversations similar to:
“How much longer do we have?”
“An hour and fifty minutes.”
“An hour?”
“An hour and fifty minutes.”
“An hour?”
“A little less than two hours.
“Less or more?”

The highlight being simultaneously entertaining and depressing:
“Are we going down?”
“Is someone going to shoot us?”
3.  I have had only two three ounce servings of water served to me since I boarded.  I am far too cheap to shell out $4 for a bottle of Desani from the airport and I forgot my empty 1.5 liter Trader Joe’s water bottle to fill up with tap water.  The ravages of dehydration are setting in and I am beginning to feel my lips recede past my gums like a Victorian corpse in a wooden box.  
4.  The Taiwanese man that I switched seats with when asked by his wife, “You switch with my husband, okay?” has left his seat reclined into my lap the entire trip.  The person in front of him (aka the person who I should have in front of me per my United Airlines e-ticket) has kindly left his erect.  That’s the last time I do you a favor, buddy.
5.  I am starving.  And no, Airlines, I don’t want your shitty hot meals.  The last time I got a treat like that, a female flight attendant threw a cheese burger wrapped in plastic, burger sweat fogging up the expanding container.  What I would like is a granola bar, a bag of nuts, something that I don’t have to pay for whilst in the middle of a five hour hunger pang.
6.  Rest assured, I am not naive enough to believe such fare will be provided for me.  Before boarding I bought my go-to trail mix which is now making me painfully gaseous.  I attribute this to the raisins.
7.  Our movie options were Horton Hears a Hoo and Gold Rush.  Enough said.
8.  I am close enough to the restroom to experience what I believe to be people passing gas en route.  I suppose the freedom I feel in having one foot of empty space to the right of me is only beneficial when said air is not full of methane gas.
9.  The state of the singular bathroom servicing sixty coach passengers was already in poor form one hour into flight.  The crevices in the floor corners collected piss like a rain gutter in Lilliput.
10.  While attempting to nap, a child stepped on my sandal-clad foot while running down the isle.  I am lucky he was young and light, not one of those super-sized children I read about in Time.  Children are quite fat these days.  Not to continue the barrage on the mother/son team next to me, but I was a bit befuddled when the mother tried to up sell Coke to her child and questioned his only wanting water.  He ended up with cranberry juice which I thought to be a sugary compromise.


Another Day in the Valley

I hate my apartment.  I can’t live in it, can’t exist in it.  I can’t walk in there and take off my sandals in the hallway anymore. I can’t stand to look across the 17 foot gap of air and concrete separating me from the 30 unit stucco piece of shit adjacent to my 30 unit stucco piece of shit.  And if I have one more dinner consisting of 1/4 cup of roasted garlic hummus, half an avocado, and some odd ounces of Trader Joe’s precooked rotisserie chicken, I will kill.   I. Can’t. Take. It. Anymore.

So when I have a day off from subjecting myself to castings and auditions, I drive the 25 miles to my mother’s house in Woodland Hills.  My Audi takes Premium gasoline.  So my premium trip to the outskirts of Los Angeles costs me roughly $4.37 each way.  Nonetheless, at this point in my apartment-existing life the benefit of a poolside coffee and web surfing bender is priceless.
12:08 pm
I leave a casting for a cheesy LA t-shirt company.  Will I get it?  Who the hell knows.  I get on the 10 West to the 110 North to the 101 West.  Traffic.  This city is ridiculous.  Traffic breaks up after people figure out how to merge.  I estimate that the process generally takes 2 miles.  It should take a matter of seconds, but the synapses of the people coming from Interstate 5 flicker on and off like the light bulbs in a trailer home.  Traffic backs up again around Laurel Canyon.  An accident.  I drive…and drive…and drive.  
1:01 pm
Arrival to Mom’s gated house.  I’m starving.  Her refrigerator is predictable, as is my diet.  I help myself to an iced latte with almond milk.  Over the course of my stay this afternoon I will have consumed 3 double shot iced lattes.  That is a lot.  By the end of the day the Costco-sized bucket of Sabra hummus is almost out.  I eat hummus daily.  Hummus with crackers, hummus with carrots, hummus with pita, hummus on a spoon, hummus on chicken.  I am turning into a chickpea.
1:35 pm
I frantically scour the Internet for reasons to live and things to do with my life.  Currently I am looking for apartments with my boyfriend which means I have an unhealthy addiction to Craigslist.
3:57 pm
Tyler sends me his friend’s user name and password for Westsiderentals.  The layout gives me a headache and the apartments similar to the one I am running away from.  I anticipate mild usage of the website.
5:02 pm
I realize part of the reason I travel to this godforsaken part of the San Fernando Valley is the cheap dry cleaner I’ve been using since high school.  I take in the sweater my mom stole from her ex-husband (my ex-step dad) and that I have now stolen from her.  I thought I would treat the fuzzy wool thing to a chemical bath.  My boyfriend is as cheap as I am so I have demanded that he give me his dry cleaning: 1 black Gucci dress shirt, 1 pair black Helmut Lang dress pants, 1 black Helmut Lang knit sweater.  When they tell me that they’re sorry they’ve lost the 2 dresses I left with them last time I don’t get mad because I can’t remember what the hell I left there.  My boyfriend will be mad if they lose his.  I hope they don’t.
5:19 pm
I drive to the cheapest gas station on Fallbrook to fill up.  I pull in as a man in a silver Jeep Grand Cherokee tries to attempt the same from the other side.  He gets mad.  He yells.  I tell him I will just back my car up.  I do.  He kisses my ass.  What an idiot.
5:27 pm
My mom left her reading glasses at the vet.  I’m picking them up because she works 15 hour days plus commuting time to downtown.  She will come home later and have 3 glasses of wine, 2 chocolate chip cookie “dunkers”, and frozen yogurt topped with strawberries and mangoes.  This is her dinner.  This is her life.
6:30 pm
Dinner.  Tuna.  I open the can and squeeze out the juice.  It sprays all over my jumper and gets on my feet.  At one point in my life I considered myself to be a gourmet.  This is one of my lower moments that presents itself with greater regularity.
6:45 pm
My car’s filthy.  I wash it.  
6:59 pm
Mom comes home.  I go buy the aforementioned frozen yogurt.
7:11 pm
I come home to my mom spying on the neighbors through the guest bedroom window.  The lights are off so they can’t see her.  She mumbles something about them removing the stucco under the eaves of their roof and calls them something along the lines of “fucking weirdos.”  She crawls off the bed and I hand her the white paper bag with her frozen yogurt inside.
7:48 pm
We sit outside and I show my mom all of the apartments I’ve been looking at on Craigslist.  I have my third and final latte.  My head hurts.