sometimes you’re not in the mood for Reba-singing strangers

Mobile Airport terminal - the only terminal

Allow me to deviate from the “big-ness” of previous posts for a second. (Craigslist, tandem bikes, Bad Girls Club – all big.) Something that’s not big: Mobile, Alabama. I happen to be in the lovely town, situated squarely in Confederate Flag Land, for work.

Now, I can surely appreciated small-town America. (Hell, I’m from Ohio.) And the people here are DOLLS. So sweet – like sugary sweet. They say “ma’am” for God’s sake! I’ve been hugged by strangers more than once in the 24 hours I’ve been here. And Alabama boys are adorable, in that gentlemen-ly, conservative way.

But I’m struggling to grasp some of the norms of Mobile culture, most of which are related to the Mobile Airport. First and most shocking, please imagine this: The airline personnel that staff the ticket counter at check-in are the same people that staff the desk at the gate and take your ticket upon boarding. They run back and forth! No big deal, you say? Well, for a passenger that may have slept through their alarm and arrived at the airport 10 minutes before take-off, this poses quite a problem. Without someone at the ticket counter, the passenger can’t get a boarding pass. Without a boarding pass, he or she can’t proceed through security. So despite his or her efforts to haul ass to the airport, they would miss their flight. However, at any other airport this person would have at least have a glimmer of hope, that with some ass-kissing and sprinting, they could be on their way home. (I just so happened to find myself in this situation this morning.)

Then, as I hunker down for my five-hour wait until the next flight, I hear singing. There’s lady with her husband, and she’s singing Reba McIntyre songs! (Please don’t question why I know they were Reba McIntyre songs.) I assume this was some off-beat attempt to keep herself amused, but she wasn’t exactly using a 12-inch voice, as my third grade teacher Mrs. Claypool would say. So surely the whole terminal can hear this broad’s mediocre Reba covers. The terminal is in the pic above, but this is essentially the whole airport right here.

So Mobile, I love ya’ll. But it’s time to turn off the southern charm and just get me the hell home. I miss Chicago! And I promise I’ll never curse O’Hare ever again.


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