Thursday, August 24, 2006

do you understand the words that are coming out of my mouth?

Tonight's ABC World News had a follow up story from investigative reporter Brian Ross. Thanks to one of his earlier reports, federal air marshals no longer have to adhere to an easy-to-spot dress code while flying. I was reminded of a time when I spotted some air marshals before they leapt into action.

It was October, 2001. I was on my way to New York for my cousin's funeral. As I waited to board the plane, I saw two guys who looked like air marshals check in and board first. Here's the paragraph I included in my Christmas newsletter that year:
On my first plane trip after September 11th, I saw two people boarding the plane who could have been plain-clothes police officers or air marshals or something. As the plane is taxiing to take off on our cross-country flight (actually Phoenix to Baltimore), a man in the seat in front of me gets up and desperately heads to the bathroom at the back of the plane. One of the flight attendants, who reminded me of Chris Tucker, starts screaming at the guy to return to his seat. Turns out, the guy doesn't speak English but really needs to get to the bathroom. So the flight attendant starts yelling, "the cabin is not secure, the cabin is not secure!" The two people who I thought were air marshals jump up and run to the back of the plane. They grab the guy and drag him back to the seat in front of me and start yelling at him in Spanish. The guy is still not responsive, so they drag him to their seats near the front of the plane. Oh by the way, the plane is taxiing this whole time. The air marshals get the guy into a seat just as the plane starts accelerating for take-off. An hour later, one of the marshals brought the guy back to the bathroom and then to the seat in front of me. The flight attendant who sounded like Chris Tucker comes up and says slowly and loudly to the guy, "I don't have anything for diarrhea, but I do have Alka-Seltzer. Do you know how to do this? 'Plop, plop, fizz, fizz, oh what a relief it is?'" Meanwhile the Hindu guy next to me says, "usually I'm the one who gets hassled" and gives me the beef stick from the snack the airline served.
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Blogger Heather said...

Jesal Patel. That's the Hindu guy u were sitting next to. Small World

Anonymous Pam Mc said...

Did the guy speak Spanish or what??

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love the way you write. I can just hear Chris Tucker saying "plop, plop, fizz, fizz..." And then the part about the beef stick...You make me laugh.


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