Gimme My Seat Back

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fat planeAs I walked up the handicap ramp to the Denny’s outside my hotel in Raleigh, NC, I cringed watching the sloth-like line of customers entering this marvel of American cuisine.  I’d never been to a Denny’s sober before.  I watched and judged these people wondering if I could possibly look like I belonged here as much as they did, but I had no choice, it was the only eatery for miles.  While waiting to be seated, I watched a man unsuccessfully try to fit into a booth.  His enormous pot-belly wouldn't clear the table.  This man would need a different seat.

A waitress named Rahnay, fresh out of her hair curlers, led me to a booth and served me a much needed coffee.  I mulled over the options, Lumberjack Slam, Moons over My-Hammy, how could I choose with so many delicious options? "Does the scrapple come with a barf-bag?", I asked.  "No sir, it does not." "Then I'll have the American Slam," I said begrudgingly. "Would you care for a side of spam?" "I'd better not."

Opening the USA Today which had been dropped at my hotel room door I saw a wonderful piece of news:  “Very obese fliers may have to buy 2nd seat .” “FINALLY!” I shouted, alarming the customers around me.  If they had been able to move their tree-trunk necks, they would have.  I quickly hid the headline realizing that these were the very people who would be affected by this new airline law.  “United Airlines is requiring extremely obese passengers who can’t fit in their seats to pay for a second seat when there is no way to accommodate their girth.”

I was so overjoyed I could hardly contain myself.  It’s finally happening, people who can’t fit into their own seat are going to need to pay for their pudge.  I can’t begin to imagine how many uncomfortable flights I’ve taken sitting next to the guy who’s arms are equal to both their one carry-on bag and their one personal item, and yet these don’t need to be stored safely under the seat in front of them, or in the overhead containers.  These items sit on the armrest between our seats and partially, if not fully, in my lap.  “Could I leave the armrest up?” says the guy next me. “No, no you may not.”

I’m not a mean-spirited person, when I fly I just want what’s mine.  A seat, a tray table, a friendly battle for the armrest, it doesn’t seem like too much to ask. But when I’m forced to use someone's arm as an armrest I simply can’t contain my disgust.  Critics will call me cruel and argue that “it's genetic, some people just can’t help their weight problem.”  Well, why are they sipping a 64oz Dr. Pepper and spilling a family size bag of Frito Lays in my lap? They aren't exactly on a diet.  The way I see it, justice has been served.  Hopefully this rule will spread faster than a Colorado wild fire, and Greyhound and Amtrak will follow suit.

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