So it’s about nine o’clock at night and I’m sitting in at a bar in San Francisco International Airport, nursing a ten-dollar drink. Need more context? I’m off to a conference; not strictly speaking an academic conference, but a conference related to my day job. My camp job. Anyway, it’s a red-eye flight. Long story. There’s no need for this much context. I’m writing from an airport bar. There’s something singularly disquieting about the whole affair and I don’t think it’s the lousy, pop music blasting over the airport announcer — “all unattended luggage will be confiscated and destroyed.”
I think this disquieting feeling is a myth. A phantom. There’s always something a little — I don’t know, off — about drinking alone. And there’s something doubly sad about drinking alone at an airport. I suppose that if I were headed off to some romantic interlude with a cute girl or secret affair, that would be one thing. But I’m going to Milwaukee. Wisconsin. And for work, no less, so there’s really nothing romantic about this. I’m sitting at a bar at the airport waiting for a red-eye, drinking a ten dollar drink, alone. And they’re playing Norah Jones.
Here’s my plan, though. Since I’ve got my trusty computer (and I think internet access in my layover in Detroit) I’ll do my best to alert you all to my progress across the country. My own little window on sanity. To avoid the loneliness.