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Late Night With Samuel L. Jackson

I am currently flying from Montreal home; my last trip for Parasoft. Tomorrow is my last day in the office. This is the last time I’m ever going to fly through Chicago, if I can help it.

My flight left Montreal at 5:30pm local time. According to my schedule, I was supposed to arrive at Santa Ana at 10:03pm local time. Not bad.

The flight out of Montreal was delayed about 40 minutes by a storm that was threatening my layover point, O’Hare in Chicago. So we sat in the plane and I read, getting increasingly hungry; the cafeteria hamburger (oh, how I shall not miss cafeteria food) from six hours ago was running out on me. But we finally did land, and once inside O’Hare I found it as crisp and clean as I recall it being the other time I was there… last week. The dinosaur skeleton doesn’t appear to have aged any in the ensuing hours.

There is a subterranean tunnel in O’Hare that connects Terminal B to Terminal C, and it is filled with neon lights of various hues, moving walkways ferrying hurried and harried people to an fro, and a soundtrack straight out of an early video game. In short, it is the first five minutes of any science fiction movie, where they try to give the viewer a taste of the world the ensuing hours will inhabit. I would not be surprised in the slightest if the movies I am talking about were filmed in said tunnel.

So I arrive at my flight, and it is being delayed 20 minutes by the selfsame inclement weather as my previous flight. A boon, really, because I was running late, and this brief respite allowed me to procure a sandwich of some sort from the TCBY stall not a few yards from my gate. I passed on the drink because I was getting directly on the plane.

We stood as the clocks came closer and closer to the twenty-minutes-late mark, and just about that time they started boarding. Now, my previous travel experience has led my to the impression that there is supposed to be some time between the passengers getting on the plane and the plane leaving. Indeed, this trip was no different, which leads me to believe that the ‘twenty minutes late’ line was a gigantic lie from the outset.

This position is reaffirmed by the fact that, as soon as we had pulled away from the gate, the captain informed us that the entire airport was running a little late, and that we were moving into the queue to take off. Oh, and we were number 22 in said queue.

I finished Hero with a Thousand Faces (review forthcoming; I promise). I began Time.

Almost two hours after our original departure time we managed to trick the earth into letting us get away for a while, and southward we headed. Shortly into the flight “Coach Carter” began playing, and every time Samuel L. Jackson blows his coach’s whistle all the headphones leak enough that it’s heard throughout the plane. Whoever thought of that one was a real smarty.

I finished Time just as the captain came over the intercom informing us that, since our estimated arrival time was now 11:45pm, Santa Ana/Orange County/John Wayne Airport would be closed, and we couldn’t land there. The solution? We’re going to land at LAX, and the airline will ferry us down to the other airport.

Have I mentioned that this is my last trip for Parasoft, and that I’m very happy about that?