The Literary Giant

or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Alaina

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Location: West Hollywood, California, United States

Saturday, August 19, 2006

The Recognition Scene

Anne Niesenbaum voiced her concern. "I can't figure out what it is exactly," she giggled. "You're wearing it as a dress but what was it meant for?" I had on a long-sleeve, beach towel-material experiment from Adidas, printed with the New York skyline and a disproportionately-large but captivating-and-blond flying woman, and there was one vertical zipper that kept it on and closed.
After I explained it as a sarong for fat people, I admitted my fear. "I was worried this morning at the airport that when I went through security, someone would say, Excuse Me Ma'am, You'll Have To Remove Your Jacket."

I had put my two carry-on items in separate bins. My shoes were with my pocketbook, and my laptop occupied a third bin. As my group of property entered the X-Ray machine, the conveyer belt was stopped. A woman who easily filled the rounded design of her chair was in control. She began yelling for someone to walk over for a screen check. The attractive guy in front of me, whose bins of belongings were also being held up, could hear me sighing, "Fuck."

Upsetting my prediction of watching my large carry-on item being emptied and swabbed and then left for me to re-pack, a woman from Airport Security handed me my shoes [for dignity purposes] and then rifled through my pocketbook. She smiled in victory as her two fingers emerged with my moderately-expensive mascara.
"We ruled out mascara at the briefing last night, right?" she asked her nodding coworker.
"God, you're right. Mascara's a liquid."
The Airport Security guard dangled my makeup as a hypnotic pocket watch. "Would you like to put this in a bag and check it?"
I shook my disappointed head so she tossed it into the confiscated-goodies pail. I had banked on touching myself up with it after the flight.

Terry and I pulled up to the crowded curbside at 5 a.m. He declared that I should go inside the airport to check-in. Althought vechicles must be attended at all times, one of my duffle bags weighed 49 lbs and the other was a little less. With one for each of his hands, Terry speed-walked me into the terminal. Dropping them onto the line, he needed to leave immediately.
"O.K.," he rasped, pulling the large bills from his wallet.
Recognizing that I wouldn't see him for the next three months, easily the longest Terry-less period in my life, I started chirping little tears. Some of them were projected onto the hand that was holding my change purse.Terry's nose was running and there were cracks in his voice as he held out a wad of cash. I packed the money in and squeezed his stomach goodbye.


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