I just saw a monk wearing Nikes pick up his techno-ringing cell phone. That’s why I love the airport. It’s a little fantasyland where people are whoever they are, you only know of them what they show you for that second, and then they’re off to some place where you most likely will never see them again. You can break whatever rules you want, you can be whatever the hell you want to be, without the years or price of actually having to do it.
It makes me want to live out my dream of trying every single profession out there. I could suddenly be a resident thoracic surgeon who studied at Oxford, and actually treated Prince Harry once. “It was really weird,” I would tell the random guy at the Terminal Café, because it was during that time when there was tons of publicity about him wearing Nazi paraphernalia. Oop- there I go breaking HIPAA code again. Forget you heard that.”
Then there’s the opportunity to test out one of my fantasy favorites, which is working for a company that manufactures faux electronics, such as televisions and computer (and now even IPODs!) to be placed in various furniture stores around the continental U.S. “We’re looking to expand to Alaska and Hawaii by 2015.” When I think of people who actually do manufacture faux products, like building that fake giant-ass flat screen TV, I consider how exciting and then immediately disappointing it must be. It looks real, it’s complete with little fake rectangle buttons and everything, but it will never actually turn ON. That is sad. One time, I actually asked someone at Room & Board Furniture about the imitation gadgets and he goes, “Yeah, it’s actually kind of weird. People steal the styrofoam IPODs all the time.” I imagine someone’s apartment filled with all kinds of deceptively real-looking home equipment, and it spooks me a little bit. But in a good way.
If I happened to meet an Indian family in line at the duty free shop, it might be fun to go with one I’ve rehearsed in my head for a while. “What’s that? Oh- yes, yes I am Indian. Actually I’m living in Salem, MA, right now. You’re familiar? Yeah, it’s a great little town. I’ve been with Witch Way walking tours for…wow…has it been 4 years already? Moving up the ladder, though. I just got promoted to Purple Cloak, and if you don’t mind my saying, it’s only a matter of time before I get the Warlock’s Walking Staff.” And then, I get to walk away having done a good deed. Their 18-year-old daughter who is disappointing them by wanting study art history instead of medicine has no longer marred their lives in comparison to this poor, nearly-30-year-old, childless ghost-tour guide from Salem.
What can I say? I’m a giver.