The flight from philly to phoenix on us scare, i mean air, is about 5 hours. It's so long, in fact, that you can actually take a nap, get all your client work done, do some reading for pleasure, and take another nap. I've flown this route for 2 years. When I boarded the flight, I was so exhausted on Thursday I fell asleep the second I buckled my seat belt. Many of you have done the same after a long week (read: beating) at the client. Somewhere after takeoff but before a much-needed drink service, I groggily awoke to what felt like a jackhammer to the back of my seat. Once I came to my senses, I realized it was a kid kicking the back of my seat. GREAT. Ok - maybe it will stop...(BANG, BANG). Give it time (BANG, BANG). Nope. I decide there's no way I'm putting up with that (did I tell you I'm wedged between two ginormous people who shouldn't be allowed on the flight due to weight restrictions?). So I unbuckle my seat belt, get up on my knees and lean over the seat. "Excuse me" I say to the mom. "Your son keeps kicking the back of my seat. Do you think it would be possible for you to make him stop doing that (smile)?" The mother apologizes and tells her little devil spawn to stop. “Thanks” I say, as I strap myself back in and begin to relax. Just as I start giving myself props for confronting the issue while being nice at the same time, BANG, BANG! Here we go again. I give it another few minutes hoping he would stop. This time, I feel my neck and face becoming red with fury. The kicking continues. Once again, I unbuckle my seatbelt, get up on my knees and lean over the seat.
Me: “Hi.” I say directly to devil spawn. I would guess he’s about 5 or 6.
DS: -no response-
Me: “Do you know how you keep kicking the back of my seat?”
DS: -no response, but solid eye contact-
Me: “Well…(with one eyebrow raised)..if you don’t stop, I’m going to tell the boogey monster.”
Mother of DS: “That is uncalled for! I can’t control my child, I asked him to stop.”
DS: starts tearing up, and subsequently crying loudly about the boogie monster
Mother of DS: Trying to console DS, “Honey, there’s no such thing as the boogey monster.”
I slowly turn back and buckle myself in, but not before giving DS a final look to let him know I’m serious. Sure, I feel like a low-life playing on the deepest fears of some innocent kid, but we all deserve a kick-free flight, no? A few minutes later, DS is still crying but starting to simmer down. I could care less...not only do I have a fierce pair of earplugs, but the soles of DS’s shoes never again touched the back of my seat.