Faux Pas,  Wanderlust: Travel Tales

No Class

We were seated in first class on our flight from Atlanta to Newark on our way to Portugal.  The boys were ecstatic and I took (undeserved) credit for the situation because I had spent a lot of time chatting up the Delta agent as we both tried to make sure that our family and our bags would end up in Lisbon.

From then on the boys were convinced that all it would take to escape the confines of coach class was a smile and a wink from me, and when we checked in at the Lisbon airport yesterday they hollered, “Get us seats in first class, Mom!  We want to sit in first class!”

I just might have been able to do it, too.  The Portuguese loved the boys’ light hair, and the whole family was reasonably clean, or at least we weren’t smelling overtly like clams.  Finn’s snarl had temporarily disappeared, I’d put on a swipe of lipstick and Bill was his usual hot self.  Drew and Porter happened to be wearing matching pants, and were walking through the airport and reading at the same time, looking like studious little princes.  I imagined that someone could have mistaken us for a cultured European family returning to London after a Lisbon sojourn.  I smiled with pride as I presented our passports at the airline counter.

The ticketing and check-in process was lengthy, and I had a number of documents to keep track of.   As I looked for a missing ticket, the agent began to frown and look at the baggage scales where our suitcases were.  The twins were standing on top of the suitcases engaged in what I can only describe as redneck repartee:

Drew: Guess what?

Porter: What?

Drew: Chicken butt!

(manic giggles)

I looked behind me; Finn was staring into space with his mouth hanging open, listening to his iPod.  Bill was leaning against a column surrounded by all the boys’ backpacks, reading 1776, oblivious to his offspring’s antics.  (This should be interpreted as unequivocal praise for the book.  Bill has little patience for long books or poultry jokes.)
Meanwhile, the guys continued.

Porter: Okay, now my turn.  Guess who.
Drew: Who?
Porter: Chicken poo!

Drew laughed so hard his face got red and he started coughing.

“I’m sorry,” I said to the agent. “Perdao,” I said, while I swatted the twins off the baggage and sent them back to Bill.

We sat at the very back of the plane.


  • KLee

    I think it’s a prerequisite of the job that most travel/ticket agents have to have absolutely no personality. It’s a testament to your fabulousness that you got one somewhere on that trip that still had shreds of individuality left. And, as far as jokes go, those were fairly benign. It could have been SO much worse.

  • Leeny

    Lol! Oh my goodness, but I’ll bet it wasn’t funny at the time! Blame it on Bill – he should have been watching the twins. 😉

  • Lin Haraway

    Nanny-nanny-boo-boo; I’m DONE with the chicken poo! My boys, however, quote old BBC shows ad nauseum. If I hear the “Dead Parrot” bit from “Flying Circus” or the “Dream Turnip” bit from “Black Adder” one more time I will put somebody in the ground.

    Are these bits obscure to you? You just wait, little missy. For a preview, just ask your husband. He’ll at least know Monty Python. Bet you a gin and tonic he can quote either “Dead Parrot,” “Ministry of Silly Walks,” or “Nudge, nudge, wink, wink; say no more.”

  • Clearlykels

    ha ha– no amount of charm was going to get that lady to put your charming family in first class after chicken butt jokes. I mean, you can only subject coach to that :-p

  • Karin B

    Several years ago I was scheduled to fly coach from one of the European cities to NYC. They had overbooked so I got to fly business. It was wonderful, wide leather seats, better food and free drinks and gifts.However,ever time they brought me something free I felt like saying sorry this doesn’t really belong to me…I was not supposed to fly in this class etc…
    When my baby was 1 we flew from Amsterdam to elsewhere in Europe. There was so much cigarette smoke around us that we complained. They moved us from very good coach seats to the very back.

  • Karyn

    I am thirty six this year; my brother will be 33. He STILL calls me up…

    Me: Hello?
    He: (Excited) Guess what??
    Me: (stupidly getting excited for him) What?!

    And hilarity ensues. Or something.

    Then again we were chastised recently for flicking peas at each other during dinner too, so maybe I should not be so quick to say who’s immature…but come on, Chicken Butt? How is that even funny? (Little does he know I now have Chicken Poo to lob back at him, mwa ha ha…)