Monday, September 9, 2013

9/9/13 out, out, damn coffee

Are there not those moments
Those breathtaking, ferocious moments,
When the impossibly slow moving glacier
Heaves itself majestically into the ocean, 
As though all of that time melted away,

I'd forgotten I'd typed this on my phone the last time I was on a plane, flying home from Houston and reunion weekend. I found it again when I'd pulled the Notes app up on my phone riding on the plane yesterday, wanting to jot a couple of things about the Harper's article I'd been reading down before they slipped away. (Fail.)

I read through that previous thought and at that moment, my coffee cup, as if to prove coffee knows what glaciers do,  leapt, or seemed to leap... (apologies to Robert Frost for that one)

majestically into my lap, almost full, and still very hot. 

The thing about spilling coffee into your lap on an airplane?

There is nowhere to go. 

You can't move, belted down into a seat, with a tray table ergonomically designed to roll every drop towards your wriggling and nonetheless immobilized thighs and two inches from a window and another person, who is equally anchored.

You are helpless to much more than let the wall of liquid wash over you and track the temperature, hoping you aren't met with any scalding sensations (thank you creamer.)


I sat the rest of the flight in coffee-drenched jeans, luckily a very dark wash that showed no color change, and all of the paper towels supplied by the attendant went largely unused, since the denim is also a very nice, thirsty fabric that didn't allow a drop to end up on the seat beneath. For future reference? Trying to  sponge out coffee with flaky white paper towels really only makes everything worse. 

The flight attendant also resupplied me with coffee that I didn't ask for. (She'd magically found a lid for this cup, though.) 

An hour and a half later, mostly dry, smelling delightfully rich, I was off the plane and had stopped into the restroom before the drive home. I had to laugh when I washed my hands and then put them under the hand blower because I wouldn't want to get my pants wet wiping them dry.


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