Discover more from Three Minute Fiction
Seatback in the Upright Position
Don't you just hate that?
Kenneth knew he should’ve upgraded this leg of the journey. The website said he would have up to six more inches of leg room.
Sure. They always use those wiggle words.
The “up to” always depended on the kindness and consideration of the person sitting in front, one who believed it was her privilege to recline. Even though the normal seats technically reclined two inches, it always seemed like six or eight to the one behind.
Once in flight, Kenneth tapped the woman in front of him and asked her to not recline because he had a presentation to prepare for and he needed the extra two inches. He offered to buy her an adult beverage of her choice during the flight for her trouble. He was nice about it because he knew the act would inconvenience her.
The lady said nothing and did not bring her chair to the full and upright position.
After not getting cooperation and her chair now fully reclined, Kenneth pounded once on the seat with the back of his fist and said, “Oh, sorry about that.”
Two minutes passed and he did the same thing with the exact same apology.
When he rapped the back of the seat a third time, the lady unbuckled, stood, and turned around to look over her seat.
She said, “What’s your problem?”
“Oh, sorry. Am I disturbing you?”
“Yes, very much so.”
“Oh, I didn’t realize,” said Kenneth.
“Of course you did. You hit my seat on purpose three times. One may have been an accident, two clumsy, but three? That’s on purpose.”
Kenneth said, “No, I mean I didn’t realize you minded one way or another what I did back here. You ignored me the first time so I figured you’d ignore me again. Maybe you didn’t have any feelings or something.”
“You have a lot of nerve, you know that, don’t you?”
“I have? Really? Tell you what. Put the seat up and this problem goes away. Maybe I’ve been a little clumsy, you know?”
“That’s so childish,” she said.
“Kenneth. Kenneth! Our flight’s boarding,” his wife said. “Come on, let’s go.”
“Uh, uh, honey,” Kenneth said, shaking cobwebs of sleep from his head, “Think it’s too late to get an upgrade so we can get a bit more room?”