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F*** Travel

That was far more of an ordeal than it needed to be.

Capped-off by the fact that the Hyatt — despite TWO WEEKS NOTICE and the efforts of Warner Bros., Wizard, and myself — fucked-up on the room.

The guy seated next to me on the flight was a reader. Reading the new Fareed Zakaria book. Normally, this would elevate him in my estimation immeasurably.

Except he read OUT LOUD for the whole fucking flight.

Seriously. Headphones on. Reading out loud.

Couldn’t make it up if I tried.

Edited to add that, at the request of my bride — Happy Anniversary, baby — I am to blog while at the show. “So I’ll know how it’s going,” she said to me on her way out the door this morning.

28 Responses to F*** Travel

  1. crisper

    I don’t think I could let someone read a book out loud next to me. I’d have to stop them. Maybe kill them. Or I’d have the flight attendants move me somewhere else. “Excuse me, is there a deaf passenger I could switch with?”

  2. lithera

    Wow. I would …. Wow.

    Man, I think I would probably be one of those in flight violence people. That or put my headphone on REALLY LOUD. It is bad enough I can’t sleep on planes as it is.

    I can feel myself twitching in anticipation of my flight tomorrow.

  3. admin

    The thing that amazes me is that I was wearing a noise-canceling headset. And it’s a good one, too!


  4. crisper

    Apparently, what you need is a speech-canceling headset.

  5. crisper

    Yeah, I’d probably crank the ‘pod up louder and louder. Of course, eventually the dude reading would probably become distracted by the shocking quantity of Dead Kennedys leaking through the ‘phones and then he’d have the gall to ask if, you know, you could please turn down your music because he’s trying to read. And then there would be blood all over the cabin and they’d have to divert the plane and that’s never, ever good.

  6. davidwynne

    I would start reading aloud myself, just a little louder than him. Hopefully I’d have something like a Hunter Thompson book with me to read from, otherwise, just random stuff out of the in flight magazine. Perhaps doing voices and stuff.

    I suspect that might achieve something…

  7. stealthbunny

    Oh, that’s just…. painful.

    …and he’s still alive to talk about it? Or even in one piece?

    And you didn’t, in pure reaction after such a flight, go over the hotel counter at the reception person when you found out about the room mix-up?

    I am in awe of such control. Truly, we are not worthy…

  8. stealthbunny

    Or humming. The same tune. Over and over. Like “It’s a Small World”. C’mon, Greg, you’re from Cali, you KNOW how infectious THAT one is!

    ..course… then you’d be infected too…


  9. jesterwitch

    That’s pretty inconciderate of that person. Did you say anything to him?

  10. sweetdragon

    I read Warren Ellis’ blog about his travel experience right above yours, and I shouldn’t be laughing at the contrast but I totally am and I’m so sorry.

    I also apologize harder for the run-on sentence.

  11. rantcomics

    Actually, that sounds like my daily subway commute to work. Dudes reading out loud while their iPods are cranked to eleven, shuffling between Kanye, trance music and what sounds like fifty hungry pigeons being brutally raped by Bobcat Goldthwait.

    I empathize.

  12. supermachodude

    It never fails. The Hyatt has messed my room up every year for the last four. I either have to change rooms, mid-convention, get charged for something I didn’t order (usually porn [which is always fun to argue your way out of with a lobby full of onlookers], or there aren’t enough beds. But, if I change hotels, I miss the chance to see Mark Millar right after he poured whiskey in his eye. For that chance, I will endure a thousand scheduling conflicts.

  13. jeditigger

    How did you put up with that for the whole flight, Greg? That’s like justifiable homicide or something. Yikes.

    And never underestimate the ability of the travel industry to screw up arrangements no matter how much preparation and warning you’ve made and how many reassurances you’re given. :P

    Enjoy the con. Wish I were there, etc.

  14. jjgalahad

    My God. That’s just horrible. What kind of grown man reads out loud? Jesus. Why- I can’t even get my head around it. You poor guy.

    I’ve guess I’ve been blessed when it comes to air travel. The only bad person I’ve ever sat next to on a plane was just a loud little girl and her loudness wasn’t really so terrible – it was just my massive, soul-destroying hangover that made it so.

  15. jjgalahad

    Clearly, Warren Ellis has transferred his Improbably Nasty Travel Curse onto Rucka via Dark English Magicks he learned from Alan Moore at a garden party.

  16. supergodginrai

    I’m wondering, when one reads out loud to himself, does one say “Chapter X” when coming across a new chapter ?

  17. will_eslinger

    wouldn’t have happened… on a plane to Charlotte ;-)

    Just kidding.

    Seriously, reading out loud? That’s like barbarism of a whole new level.

  18. jeditigger


    I approve. It’s divine justice for blowing us off! ;)

  19. lithera

    It never works well with the blood and the death…

  20. lancescott

    “”So I’ll know how it’s going,”

    Translation: So I know you haven’t killed anyone and are rotting in jail.

    Always a concern.

  21. gregmce

    If you are ever seated next to him, might I recommend the correct response of singing (on infinite repeat) the Dead Milkmen’s “Punk Rock Girl”? Because by the third time you belt out, “Punk rock girl, pleeeease look at me!” (in that wonderful slightly off-key way that it is sung) he will stop. Or you will be hit over the head and then be unconscious for the rest of the flight.

    Either way can only be considered a victory.

  22. edkaye

    Wow, I don’t think I have read out loud since I was about 3 years old. It sounds like he needed a noise canceling bag over his face :)

  23. stacyx

    Ouch. That’s just painful to read about. Can’t imagine what it was like sitting next to him. This is why I always carry my iPod. I can block everything out with it.

  24. oilyrags

    reading aloud to oneself can be delightful, especially if you’re into the work of a master prose stylist. Twain and Joyce are especially good candidates in my experience.

    Presently I’m in the middle of War and Peace (this recent edition) and the translators prose is uh…pure poetry! I often find myself orating the text in especially good passages.

    Now, that’s not to defend the practice of doing this on a plane.

  25. nealbailey

    On the thirty-hour bus to LA, I had a big black dude next to me who sang early 90s grunge at the top of his voice between 3 and 6 in the morning, obviously high on something…

    The hardest part about that shit is being able, physically, to turn to the guy and say, “SHUT THE FUCK UP!” but not knowing if, given that he’s obviously so far beyond social moray that he’s talking to himself, you should.

    It’s why I didn’t get much reading done down for Wizard World LA months back. And balls on that. People are not getting crazier, but they’re finding it more acceptable to be crazy in public where it affects other people.

  26. edkaye

    You should visit Victoria B.C. in Canada. We have a huge amount of metals who shout at them selves in the street. I think it is because it is the only part of Canada where you don’t freeze to death 9 months of the year. We are below the 49th parallel, so it is essentially next to Seattle.

    It gets to the point where you don’t want to go down town any more, in case the crazy trolley lady throws cats at you!

  27. jjgalahad

    Found this fun little video over at Neil Gaiman’s blog recently. I thought it might make you grin, considering Whiteout and all.

  28. jmorse

    Let me know when you’re ready for a trip in a Gulfstream, Greg. I’ll hook you up with a great rate.

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