4 Notable Things That Happened While Flying Last Week

4. Look, at this point, it's cliche to say that the TSA molests you. I know that. But also: the TSA molested me. I went through that x-ray thing, and when I came out they said my right shoulder and my left pocket had been "flagged". At first I got what kind of felt like a brief shoulder rub/massage, which, I won't lie, was kind of nice. Then the dude felt up my thigh and smooshed my testicle against my leg. So I guess my ball was the threatening thing they saw in my pocket? Wouldn't be the first time it terrified someone, truthfully.

3. Waiting for a red-eye at an airport is tiresome, but waiting an additional hour and a half because of a delay is downright exhausting. Thankfully, there was a dude who took out his guitar and sang songs at the gate. Normally, this could be annoying when you're just trying to nap, but he was legitimately good. Great, even. Me and the people nearby just kind of quietly sang along. I even applauded at one point to show we were appreciating it.

Only after he was done playing and some fellow passenger asked him his name did I realize I actually knew who the singer was: Tim Urban, a finalist on American idol from a few years back. I actually used to vote for Tim… not because he was good, but because he was notoriously bad. As a fan of VoteForTheWorst.com, a recently defunct website with a mission of keeping the worst singer on the show.

It's a little surreal to sit there and genuinely enjoy a singer only to realize he's someone you once thought was laughably bad, but, you know, consider me a convert.

Oh, and the older guy who asked him his name? He kept misunderstanding and calling Tim "Keith Urban" because he didn't know who he was. But he still asked for a picture with him anyway. Reality TV fame must be the worst.

2. And speaking of reality TV fame, Tim wasn't the only reality star on my flight: Gervase from the first season of Survivor sat a couple rows up from me. The reason this is particularly noteworthy is because he's (more than) rumored to be on the upcoming season of Survivor. In fact, I looked it up, and filming apparently JUST ended, so it made sense that he was now flying back to Philadelphia.

Later, I wrote it up with some pretty pertinent details for a Survivor spoiler message board and got called a liar and troll. Fine, guys, fine! Don't trust me!

Also, thank goodness our plane didn't go down, or it would have been a sad day for reality television junkies.

1. Okay, but the craziest thing of all was this granny/awkward ~25-year-old grandson that sat immediately behind me on my connecting flight (or rather the flight I got put on 5 hours later after missing the next two connecting flights thanks to the first flight's delay). Granny was blind or at least legally blind, so her grandson was reading SkyMall magazine to her. Except instead of reading the provided captions (which some copywriter worked hard on!) he was just interpreting the stuff based on the picture.

The shit in SkyMall is extravagant and bizarre, and to have someone sum up all the goods without a hint of irony was absolutely trippy. Part of me wanted to turn around and tell him to shut up, while the other part of me wanted to take out my phone and record it because it's the kind of WTF nonsense that should go viral.

I fly again Friday. Undoubtedly, more stories to follow.

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