So it’s possible that I watch too many crime dramas. Or that I’m within the margins of clinically insane. But if you ask me, I’m pretty sure last night I was this close to being murdered in the middle of the night at Newark International Airport.
Let me explain.
First of all, something you should know about me is that I have a growing number of people who have sworn never to travel with me ever again. But not for reasons you might think, like that I’m completely high maintenance or a total drag and no fun. It’s because nearly every time I travel, it’s like someone’s filming a low budget “Punk’d” episode, except Ashton Kutcher never comes out at the end with his Tom Hardy hat on sideways and lovingly hugs me while I tell him how much I’m gonna’ get him back for this.
Instead, you just end up feeling a little weird about life in general for a few days after your return from said Trip With Becky and wonder why I ever leave the tri-state area at all.
And while last night’s experience wasn’t the worst I’ve ever had, there was definitely a moment where I thought “it’s possible I might get hacked up into little pieces and/or have my face eaten off by a copycat Cannibal Cop. Better email work and tell them I might be late.”
So after boarding the plane and then sitting on the tarmac for an hour while a baby cried next to me in a really soothing tone, I completely settled into that super relaxed feeling I’d had earlier on the beaches of Miami.
Also, when I say “super relaxed feeling,” it’s possible I mean that I sat on the beach after all of my meetings and returned work emails while the tops of my feet and hands burned because nobody EVER remembers to put sun block on those parts of their bodies, right?
Anyway, once the plane finally took off, I closed my eyes, moved my seat back a quarter of an inch, and then got into a passive-aggressive kick-war with the guy behind me who clearly did not appreciate the fact that I moved my seat back just enough so that my face wasn’t squarely planted in the seatback of the person in front of me.
Ahhh, air travel.
So just as it was safe to use my portable electronic device again, an announcement came over the loud speaker asking if there were any physicians on the flight, and if so, could they please ring their call button?
Obviously, everyone immediately turned to see what all the excitement was about, which isn’t as easy as one might think when you’re buckled down in an airplane. So basically what I saw was a lot of nervous flight attendants running up and down the aisle, some even more nervous passengers, and a bunch of people motioning to the guy laying unconscious on the floor.
So, naturally, I turned back around, put my headphones on, and turned the music up.
What? I’m not a medic!
Anyway, fast forward three hours to when we landed (and yes, he was fine and walked himself off the plane with an actual medic, so I was right not to worry, guys) and it was nearly one in the morning. I’d been up for 19 hours and really ready to get home, so when the car service I always use for business trips arrived within five minutes of my call, I was feeling pret-ty good that sleep wasn’t far away.
Until I got into the car.
Me: Hi there.
Driver: Hi. Can I ask you a question, if you don’t mind?
Driver: Do you have any cash on you?
Driver: Do you have any cash? I need fifteen dollars for the tolls.
Me: Uh… wait, what tolls? There aren’t any tolls between here and Hoboken.
Driver: Yes, but I don’t have any cash on me, I left it all in my other coat at home. I know exactly where I left all of the money, too.
Me: Oh, I’ve totally done that, that’s so annoying!
Driver: So if you could please give me fifteen dollars, I won’t charge you for the tolls.
Me: Um….I’m not sure I understand. There aren’t any tolls. And also, I don’t get charged for this, my company does. I never see the bill…….and, again, there aren’t any tolls.
Driver: Yes, but I don’t have any money.
Me, shuffling through my bag now, shaking, worrying that I’m about to die in some weird $15 hit: I only have four dollars. Is that good?
Driver: You don’t have any more money? I twenty, perhaps?
Jeez, dude, I don’t have $20! Take no for an answer! Also, please don’t murder me.
Me: I swear, this is all I have.
Driver: Ohhhhh, no, no, no……
Me, panic-sweating: What?
Driver: I cannot take you home.
Me, barely keeping it together, just in case there were cameras around and I was on national television: Wait, why? There aren’t any tolls!
Driver: I don’t have any money.
Me: Ok, but there is an ATM inside. You could get money there.
Driver: No, I can’t do that.
Me: Um….ok, you know what? I’m going to call the car service again and have someone else come get me. I’m really sorry I don’t have fifteen dollars.
Driver: No, no, I’ll call them, you just sit there.
|"Please don't chop me up. I really|
don't have $15."
And so he did. And so I did. And also, I started going through all of the things I still had yet to do in my life that now I’ll never get the opportunity to do because I’m about to become the latest cold case on “Dateline.”
Fast forward to ten minutes later, when I’m panic-emailing my boss about what is happening JUST IN CASE I DIE.
Me, nervously: So is the other driver coming soon?
Driver: Yes, he’s 6 minutes away.
Um, there’s no way you know that, dude. Please don’t murder me.
Me: I’m really sorry, again, that I don’t have fifteen dollars.
Driver: Me too.
I’m going to die.
But just then, the other driver arrived, I hopped out of the murderer’s car and into the other one, closing the door without even saying a word.
New, non-murderous driver: What just happened?
Me: I have no idea. He needed money and asked me for fifteen dollars-
NNMD: He asked you for money???
NNMD: For what??
Me: I’m not sure? He said it was for tolls, but there aren’t any tolls between here and Hoboken. So maybe for gas?
NNMD: No, they give us gas cards.
Me: Um…..I don’t know. But he really wanted fifteen dollars.
NNMD: I’m so sorry he asked you that, that should never have happened.
Me: It’s ok. I’m just glad I didn’t die.
Me: Oh, haha, no, I’m just kidding.
NNMD: Well, you never know who you’re getting into the car with.
Me, nervously: Haha, yeah, I guess that’s true……
And then I think I passed out from the anxiety and woke up in Hoboken, safe and sound with four dollars in my wallet and all of my limbs and face still attached.
Welcome to my life.
PS As some of you know, Stories About My Underpants got voted one of the Top 25 Humor Blogs on SkinnyScoop – thank you! But now I have to choose a post that best exemplifies this blog.
Some of you have given me your feedback on the blog’s Facebookpage - and keep ‘em coming! – but I need more! Right now it seems to be between the one where I sang that Two Princes song to the boy I liked in high school, the Valentine’s Day post, or that one where I got all of my underpants stolen.
What do you think?