Wednesday, January 23, 2008

i'm not heavy - it's my luggage!

the husband and i have just gotten back from a ten day vacation. it was the kind of trip that required the wearing of a bathing suit - never my most favorite thing - but we were headed toward a beautiful island and meeting up with a group of friends, so displaying my thighs seemed a small price to pay for a week in paradise. in preparation for the baring of the thighs, i had invested in cover-ups of every type and color. i must admit i had more cover-ups than i had days at the resort but, when it comes to packing, better safe than sorry is my motto.

when we checked in at the airport in los angeles i was feeling excited. this was an unusual feeling for me, as i am one who usually approaches airports with a sense of dread and impending doom, but i was really looking forward to this trip and the husband kept reassuring me that i was curvy not fat and that i looked great - with or without my ten thousand cover-ups. while i didn't really believe him, his positive thinking was rubbing off on me and i was actually smiling when we checked in our luggage at the american airlines counter.

"hi" i said to the man behind the desk - we are on the 9:30 flight to miami". he nodded, took my bag and then without looking up said "you're overweight". how could he say that? i thought i looked quite slim in my favorite black jeans and all forgiving black sweater. i felt my entire body blush - i knew it. i was too fat to go to st. barth's or for that matter anywhere. this total stranger was the only one to tell me the truth. i could kid myself all i wanted - american airlines man knew where i stood and was not afraid to say it - out loud. "what?" i heard myself say. "your bag - it's fifteen pounds overweight. that will be $50." i was so happy to hear that he was talking about my suitcase and not me, that i gladly handed over the money - only to panic, once again, when he adhered a bright orange tag to my luggage that proclaimed, in big black letters, HEAVY.

american airlines really needs to rethink it's policies. walking around with anything announcing that i, or anything that belongs to me, is less than perfect is more than i can bear. it is a good thing that they no longer serve food on airplanes because i didn't want be tempted. as long as i had to walk around with a scarlet letter of over-indulgence attached to my luggage, there was no way i was going to let anyone at american airlines ever see me eat.