Friday, December 21, 2007

Can a pot appear incongruous on a stove?

On the way to Paris I awoke all contorted, my face pressed to the flimsy plastic around the window. I tried to assess how I felt on all counts. Little sleep, bad food, booze, cold medicine. Echoes of a half-watched movie heard through tinny headphones. I decided I felt quite bad. I found that my forehead bore a film of cold sweat. I thought I was about to puke on a plane for the first time since I was a kid. I thought a while about this, whether it was likely to occur. I contemplated the scope of my misery and the consequences of losing control. There were no airsickness bags. I considered the terrible prospect of erupting helplessly into a convulsion, coughing and choking bile and airplane food onto my lap, my shirt, the floor, the seat in front of me. The humiliation. It’d be substantial. Less if I had something better to puke into than my hands. But this would require acknowledging the degree of my malaise, and so make it more real. Finally I turned and asked Sara for something to vomit into, and she produced a small and then – as if on second thought – a much larger Ziploc bag. Immediately I felt better, gripping it loosely between my fingers and my knees. And suddenly I felt the soft jolt, and heard the groan, of tires meeting tarmac, and we were taxiing in, and I was alright. And an hour later as we sat and waited for our flight to London, I was hungry.