Windy City Media Group Frontpage News


home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor



by Jennifer Parello

This article shared 2241 times since Wed Mar 24, 2004
facebook twitter google +1 reddit email

I am writing this while seated in an airplane. I am in steerage class, squished between two large men in suits who are each digging an elbow into my kidneys. Across the aisle, a businessman with a pained expression is trying to shove a stick of gum into the bawling mouth of a neighboring infant. The baby's mother throws the gum back at the businessman and explains that babies don't "chew" gum, they "choke" on gum. The businessman pockets the gum and then offers the infant a small, rubber ball to gnaw on. The weary mother accepts the toy, ignoring the warning label that screams: "CERTAIN DEATH!"

A few rows in front of me, two other business travelers, who began flirting a few hours before in an airport bar, are drunkenly groping each other. A harried stewardess, who has obviously benefited from the airline's relaxed weight and attractiveness requirements for flight attendants, threatens to throw scalding water on them if they don't put their pants back on.

Such is the glamorous life of a business traveler. It's a world filled with adultery, alcoholism, and attempted infanticide. It is

populated by people whose gray pallor reflects too many trips to the vending machine and too much time soaking up the glow of the pay-per-view adult movies that are generously defined as

"entertainment" on expense reports.

For the past year, I've been spending most of my work week in hotel rooms with no mini-bars and views of parking lots. The reason for all of this travel, according to my boss, is because it would be in everyone's best interests if I spent as little time in the office as necessary.

"Is it because I'm a rabble rouser?" I asked, hopefully.

"No, it's because you're an idiot," he growled. "Now, get the hell out of here."

Every week, he hands me a plane ticket along with some vague orders to check on "the field." However, since I have no idea what "the field" is or where to find it, I spend most of my time in the

shadowy world of hotel lounges, drinking watered down cocktails under plastic palm trees, and

preying on the troubled affections of desperate and lonely businesswomen who are adrift from their family and friends and

disconnected from any sense of stability.

Oops, wait a minute! It seems that I've just confused my life with that of the sleazy, womanizing businessman played by Fred MacMurray in "The Apartment."

Although I aspire to be the type of amoral corporate executive who lives on maraschino cherries and cheap blondes, the sad truth is that I'm simply an incompetent middle-manager who spends most of her downtime on the road

dodging social obligations with colleagues and combing garbage cans for disgarded restaurant receipts to beef up her expense report.

The most daring thing I do on the road is lie about my profession. But that's gotten me into some unexpected jams. On the flight to Washington this week, I tried to impress the cute woman next to me by telling her that I am an astrophysicist at NASA. But, as luck would have it, she is also an astrophysicist at NASA and she wanted to know my thoughts on string theory. I quickly feigned an emergency bladder complaint and hid in the bathroom until a stewardess threatened to throw scalding water on me if I didn't come out.

This article shared 2241 times since Wed Mar 24, 2004
facebook twitter google +1 reddit email

Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.

Copyright © 2021 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.








About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.