Wednesday, August 13, 2008

There Once Was a Man From Nantucket

Plane's-eye-view of Nantucket.

More photos from terrifying altitudes.

The first of two terrifying planes I flew on this weekend.

The second of two terrifying planes I flew on this weekend.

Keep in mind that I was sitting in the BACK row.

Inside the airport. It's just like 'Wings'! Sorta.

This was our room at a local B&B. Bow before its quaintness.

Nick and I at the wedding

I was recently having a Relationship discussion with my boyfriend of two-and-a-half years when he burst out, “Why don’t you ever bring up marriage? You are, like, the only girl in the entire history of the world who doesn’t obsess over marriage. It’s, it’s…weird.”

“I dunno,” I shrugged. Truth be told, I have given some thought to my wedding, but mostly just the playlist and whether or not the wedding party should reenact the dance from "Thriller" at the reception (I’m thinking yes). I guess I don’t feel the need to bring marriage up all the time because the rest of the world does it for us. The subject comes up almost every time Nick is invited to a wedding because most of his friends have a “no ring, no bring” policy: guests are only allowed to bring spouses and fiancés. But when two of Nick's friends got married in Nantucket last weekend, Nick got a +1, which is how I found myself in Boston climbing aboard a (depraved) puddle-jumper plane about to fly into a rainstorm. Nick was coming from Albany so the plan was to travel separately and meet in Nantucket.

I call him right before I get on the plane. “If the plane goes down, you’re not allowed to move on and marry someone else,” I tell him. “You have to remain celibate and mourn me for the rest of your life. And if you don’t, I’ll haunt you and your wife like in that horrible Eva Longoria movie.” He laughs, a little too heartily for my taste.

I loathe flying, in case you couldn't tell. I find it to be a most unnatural practice. “Oh my god,” I say to the person sitting next to me as we take off. “This is like the end of La Bamba – only I haven’t done anything noteworthy yet!” With every new bout of turbulence, I inhale sharply and tense up. This is how I respond to unwelcome situations in life. I’m a clencher. When the going gets tough, I grind my teeth and squeeze my eyelids shut. My position of choice during turbulence is to grip the bottom of the chair and pull upward. A part of me truly believes that if the plane suddenly falls from the sky and I pull hard enough, I’ll be able to lift it up like Superman and save us all.

To take my mind off of my imminent death, I think about who will come to my funeral. I worry that my media friends won’t have anything to talk about with my investment banker friends, but then I remember that they’ll be talking about me so it won’t matter. “She always hated flying,” they will say tearfully to each other. “It’s just so…tragic.” I'm concerned that my death won’t have as much of an impact because Nick and I aren’t engaged. If we’d been betrothed my death might have made the cover of the New York Post (“Fiancé Recalls Last Phone Call With Plane Crash Victim: ‘Never Marry’”) but as a free agent I don’t have a chance. Nobody really cares if your girlfriend dies in a plane crash, but if your fiancée dies in a plane crash? Then you’re cooking with propane. As I’m contemplating this, the plane starts to descend and we wobble on down to the sweet, sweet earth.

Among the wedding guests are a highly likeable group of Irish people doing their best to fulfill every national stereotype simultaneously. One such Irishman is sitting next to us at dinner and drunkenly opens up the conversation by asking every unmarried couple at the table, “Why aren’t you married yet?”

“We don’t even live in the same city,” says Nick, who works in Albany during the week. “First we have to live in the same place. Then we have to move in together. Then we’ll think about marriage.”

Throughout the night, whenever the Irishman sees us, he calls out gaily to Nick, “Are you married yet, brotha?” Oh, and my boyfriend’s ex-girlfriend of five years is there with her fiancé, whom she is marrying in two weeks. It is a very comfortable situation, is what I’m trying to tell you.

But the wedding is truly lovely and we end up having a blast, as one always does when partying with the Irish. We head home early (by Irish standards). Back at our B&B, I shriek at Nick for Blackberrying in bed, and Nick gets mad at me for using too much of his saline solution and for taking too long to get ready for bed. See? We’re practically married already.


Luis said...

If you were married already, him farting in front of you would be a regular occurrence, ;-).


MIke said...

Marriage is fun! Me and my husband have burping contests. No girly girls to stop us from enjoying bodily functions here! ;-)

Anonymous said...

WIngs and Labamba references. Perfection. :)

Anonymous said...

At what point in a relationship is it appropriate to began farting in front of each other? O' the perplexing questions that plague all of mankind.

Noelle Hancock said...

I don't think it ever is, personally. Farting is the death of romance.

Anonymous said...

Hey, I was just randomnly reading blogs and ran across yours...interesting blog you got=) I especially had to write you after reading this blog and your fear of flying...I'm the same way, flying terrifies me and I agree it's so unnatural. I fly sometimes but I avoid it at all costs and when I have to fly I dread it...It doesn't help that I had family die in a plane crash in 1994. I've been known to greyhound it instead of flying to my destination. Just wanted to let you know you are not alone!