C'bawnnnnn, Lady . . .

Sit down. Please. Just have a seat. This will only take a minute. I have something to tell you. You ready? I'm an obese person.

I know, I know. It is stunning. Truth be told - since I was eight-years-old (31 years ago) I classified as obese. I've also been morbidly obese almost the entire time of that and "super" morbid obese for a long part. It is what it is.

I'm aware of why I'm fat (food is DELICIOUS and goes with every mood) and I'm aware of my being fat.

What does that mean? It means I don't wear tube tops, I don't buy artificial fabrics, I don't run without some lotion or powder (depending on the relative humidity), and I don't board an airplane without my belt extender (truth be told I don't always need it - and when I do I need like an INCH of it) and I never, ever, ever eat or drink ANYTHING on an airplane (when you're the fat guy - you don't give people ammunition by stuffing your "fat face" in front of them).

Yet, a week or so ago, there it was . . . me (belt extender in hand and nothing else in tow) walking down the long, boring aisle of the plane watching row after row deeply exhale in sighs of relief as I continued past them like so many deathmate inmates getting stays at the 11th hour and I made it allllll the way back to row 31 (the last row on the plane) where something befuddling happened.

There, in 31 D (I was 31 E (I know, I know - my flight was cancelled so I got stuck in the middle seat), was a woman who seriously weighed as much as I do (NO judgement - big is beautiful (or whatever) and I'm certainly no sizist) looking at me with sheer horror in her eyes at the very thought that she was, as the fat lady, would be stuck next to the fat man.

I get it. I really do - there is a certain assumption we (the obese) make that no one will be next to us on the plane and, if they do, it will be a toddler who takes up way-less-than their otherwise "fair" space on the row. I'm not naive to that. I'm not an idiot. I'm not even mildly obtuse.

But, c'bawn lady. When you're the fat lady on the plane . . . you can't always presume a toddler is coming down that aisle.