I was on an aeroplane for the majority of my waking hours yesterday. Rather than make a coherent narrative, I’ll just make some notes:
* Whenever I fly with BA, and they mention their One World Alliance, I can’t help but think of it being a good name for a fascist empire.
* Going through the yummy security checks at Heathrow wasn’t half as bad as I’d feared it would be. Still a pain in the arse, but, at least I was entertained by the abnormally tall dude behind me in the queue who was just bursting to chat. Bursting to chat about having a first class ticket; bursting to chat about having just been to the Belgian Grand Prix; and then while we were randomly discussing ice hockey and baseball, he just came out and said, “well, at least we don’t have to queue like this when we die.”
* As I was going to the plane, there were dudes doing random security checks. They say random, but seeing as though the only people who got checked were white men with beards and men with brown skin: I’m guessing that the checks weren’t as random as they want us to believe. Needless to say, I was one of those who had some humourless dick riffling through his bag, having to take my shoes off again, and having his rubber-gloved fingers run along the inside of the belt area of my jeans.
* It’s a grubby subject, but one I’ve not discussed before: do we all get the horrible non-stinky, but slightly painful, wind on long flights? I thought it was just my rotting guts, but I mentioned it to my pal Derick last night, and he gets it too; which makes me think that a lot of people must get it.
* James Blunt was on my flight. About the same height as me, and with hair that desperately needs conditioner, darling.
* The dude next to me on the flight was slightly odd. Not odd in an outward way, but odd in a will-kill-everyone-at-his-office-one-day odd. He was already settled into his seat when I got on the plane; settled like he’d been there for a good long time. And he had his iPod in a little black case. His fancy headphones in a little black case, his DC power adapter in a little black case. He was reading home cinema magazines. Note the plural. And he looked like a younger Eugene Levy. In an effort to be friendly to the dude who I’d be sitting next to for 8 hours, I offered him my Guardian newspaper when I’d done with it; he just shook his head and mumbled “no.” So, okay, there’s nothing particularly incriminating about all that, but if he turns up on the news one day, I for one won’t be shocked.
So, anyway, I’m in New York for a short trip to hang out with my friends Derick and Jennifer, and see some Yankees games. Unluckily, I had a new outbreak of iritis on Sunday night, and didn’t have a chance to see an eye doctor before I left Berlin. With memories of Sicko floating around my brain, I went to see a doctor here in Brooklyn. And what a lovely lovely man he was. Because I didn’t have any travel insurance, he gave me some eye drops that he had as samples from the manufacturers, which saved me – get this – one hundred and sixty dollars. I still had to pay $150 for the time I spent in his office, but, that’s the lesson one learns when one doesn’t have travel insurance.