Do I have a sign on my forehead?

I’d swear I do. And that sign reads, “Talk to me and I will talk back.” Yes, this is a very lame sign and not very creative but it’s early on a Monday so what do you expect. I have had other signs on my forehead in the past. There was, “If you are a manipulating momma’s boy feel free to marry me” and who could forget, “Give me all the work you can possibly pile on but don’t worry about paying me anything for my efforts.” Ah, good times.

But I figured out the new sign this weekend when I flew back to Arkansas to visit my daughter on her 8th birthday. The ex and his family were complete assholes to me but that’s another blog. Getting to Arkansas required two flights with a long layover in Charlotte. On the first flight I ended up in the middle seat between a couple of talkative women. I was all set to read. Even had the reading material on my lap and was looking directly at it. You would think this is the universal body language for “I’m reading” but apparently not.

We ended up talking for most of the trip. I know the girl on my right was traveling to Miami, had been bounced from a previous flight and is a fan of that Age something or other reality show with the tennis player picking between the bimbos and the cougars. I know the woman on my left worked for the airline, was going home to visit her mother in Charlotte and I don’t know for sure but I’m thinking she might play for her own team if you get my drift. But eventually airline lady pulled out her iPod and Miami girl took out her own book and I could go back to my pages. But instead I fell asleep. I’m pretty sure I caught myself with my mouth wide open at least three times. I seriously hope I didn’t snore.

After a 3 hour layover I boarded the plane that would take me into Little Rock. On this plane (a much smaller one) I was seated next to this nice lady whom I figured would just look out the window or nap. Nope. We talked the entire way. This woman now knows more about my life than most of my co-workers. And I know her name, her age, the age of her children, she’s divorced, why she’s divorced, that she’s also a widow, has a friend who wants to be more and what she does for a living. I learned all of this in less than two hours. I swear I was put on this earth to talk.

You can imagine my relief when I then, two days later, boarded the plane to leave Little Rock and found myself seated next to a man. Men don’t talk, right? Uh…wrong. Southern men talk up a storm. And this one started right away – even though I was once again reading. At one point he even asked me what I was reading. I learned this man’s wife’s name, that she recently changed jobs, that his 16 month old daughter is precious but knows how to work her mother. I also learned he works as an insurance adjuster, was traveling to South Carolina on business, where he grew up and where he lives now.

When did people change this much? I have flown many times in the past but never carried on conversations with any of my fellow passengers. Until this weekend. Then I couldn’t get away from them. On the last flight the girl next to me was nice enough to only bother me twice. She asked for the time and then asked if she was snoring. She wasn’t by the way.

So now I’m home and back at work where I pretty much spend all day by my self. Ah, good times.

How about you? What would you do if the person next to you just started talking? Are you like me and can talk to anyone? For hours? Or would you actually explain that you would prefer to be left alone to read? Or sleep? Or snore even? What sign do you have on your forehead?

30 thoughts on “Do I have a sign on my forehead?”

  1. TiffinaC says:

    You know damn well I will ignore them if they talk to me… I do it so well… I’m just to shy to share my life story with someone! You’ve seen me in blatant ignore action Terri… There is no turning me! LOL

  2. terrio says:

    I’ve seen you in a crowdes store when your husband and I were there to talk to the talkative patron. Sitting next to the person on a plane is totally different.

    I know you are not mean or rude by nature so I know that you will at least listen and nod. And withing 10 to 15 minutes, you will talking like old friends.

    In fact, I’d put money on it…LOL!

  3. MsHellion says:

    I’ll talk to a wall. So yes, if people start talking to me on a plane, I would talk to them. If they annoyed me, I would probably turn the conversation to something where they hated me and would cease speaking with me–I can make that happen–but otherwise, I’d just talk. It passes the time just as well.

    Though if I have the last HP book with me on the plane, and the guy who plops down next to me says, “Hey, I just got done reading that. It’s awful when he dies, isn’t it?”, I will be escorted off the plane in handcuffs for homicide–weapon clearly a 7 pound hardback.

  4. terrio says:

    I’m back on the “he’s not going to die” bandwagon now. As someone mentioned (I can’t remember who or where – see title of blog) it would really hard for them to promote the HP themepark with a dead HP. Therefore, no dying for HP. It’s a given.

    I think she should just blow up the entire place killing everyone but Harry. Then you’d still have your beloved little wizard and still no other characters to include in future fanfic crap. It’s a win win.

    And it’s one thing if I have to bail you out for flashing a cop or something but I don’t think I could swing the bond for homicide.

  5. midwestgal says:

    LOL . . . I love this blog. Terri – maybe there’s something about your personality that makes others feel comfortable enough to share their life’s stories with you, haha.

    Gosh – I thought we already know that Harry dies? I haven’t ready any HP yet – saving this for my son to read with him.

  6. I can’t say I have this problem. The people I sit next to usually scare I think my sign says: “If you’re creepy and ya know it talk to me…” Although one time a little boy spent an eight hour flight explaining to me the inner workings of pokemon. Whatever! Glad your flight was safe,Ter!!

  7. terrio says:

    MWG – Maybe you’re right. I’m thinking I should have either been a shrink or a bartender. I’m leaning more towards bartender.

    And I haven’t read any HP yet either. I would say I’m waiting to read them to Isabelle but it’s more like I’m waiting until she can read them on her own and I won’t have to read them ever. *g*

  8. terrio says:

    Kelly – did you mean for that to be in the tune of the song? Because now I’m singing “If you’re creepy and you know it clap your hands…” LOL!

  9. Quantum says:

    Great Blog Terri!

    When travelling and wishing to quietly think, I pretend to read something to do with my work, eg cosmology or quantum physics.This is pretty well guaranteed to destroy any conversation. If I’m feeling chatty however, I tend to do a crossword or play with some toy or other. Very few people can resist correcting my crossword blunders *g*

    I suspect though, that if I lent you Steven Hawking’s ‘Brief History of Time’, just to place on your lap, you would end up sitting next to the great man and get an un-brief life history….you lucky girl!

    Tiff, I didn’t get an impression of shyness when I encountered the Goddess. Just shows how wrong one can be!

  10. terrio says:

    Great advice, Q. And you’re right, I would love to talk to Hawking for a two hour trip. I would feel like a complete idiot and not understand anything he tried to explain but I’d still love it.

  11. Terri, my kids have always teased me that EVERYBODY talks to me and I talk right back…on line at TJ Maxx, the guy at the gas station, grocery store aisles, etc. When we flew back from Las Vegas last week I sat next to a mom who wound up nursing her 9 month old daughter (not at all a problem for me, but she apologized instantly). Then: I now now she’s on her second marriage, her husband’s from Australia, she never thought she’d have kids, she’s 42, she has two cats and a dog (the cats were being cared for by a catsitter but the dog was in a kennel), she took her in-laws to Vegas to celebrate her 5 year anniversary, she was an executive assistant before she “retired” with her 2 kids, she has over 2 acres in Connecticut and there are coyotes, her husband likes to play roulette and poker and is a “high roller…you get the picture. People take one look at my face and before I know it they’re telling me about their rehab experience or their last mammogram or their cheating ex-husband…I am not kidding. I should have become a therapist. There is something calming, though, about conversing with someone you’ll never see again and just unloading. Of course, I don’t do it!

  12. terrio says:

    Maggie – you do realize what this means if we ever meet. We’ll never shut up. This could be dangerous…

  13. Beth says:

    Hey Terri, the funniest experience I had with this was with a woman I hired for a part-time job. She didn’t stay but a couple of months, but within the first hour of working with her I had her entire life story. Her name was Mia (oh so appropriately, just like Mia Farrow). Her husband and her adopted a girl from her church whose parents died. She was a teenager. The husband, who is in his thirties starts an affair with her – she is about 16. Mia finds out, all hell breaks loose. Bottom line – hubby and daughter end of living together, he is not prosecuted for statutory rape because they both deny there is anything is going on. Mia is forced to leave the house and the real kicker – I’m sure you can guess – she has to pay child support for her husband’s underage mistress who is her adopted daugthter. Too much information! I found all this out the first hour, the next hour was spent listening to her gynecological issues.

  14. terrio says:

    OMG! Beth that is hysterical! *throwing up hands* You win. I can’t top that one.

    Though I did have this neighbor that if she cornered you you just knew you were going to hear about her horrible ex-husband and all the ways he’d done her wrong. That woman is the poster child for bitter ex-wives. LOL!

    Gah! Gynecological stuff? *shiver*

  15. Beth says:

    Gynecological stuff! I once received a Christmas letter from a friend – you know the kind of mass produced photocopy that goes to everyone in the Christmas card – that listed all her gynecological woes during the previous year. There apparently were a lot of them and everyone got all the details. I have never laughed so hard in my life, just picturing her grandfather reading it.

  16. Lindsey says:

    Glad you had a safe trip, Terri! Funny how some people just invite confidences. I am not one of them – I think I must give off some sort of “I’m really shy so please don’t talk to me” vibe. That said, I don’t really mind it when people talk to me. And I actually like people who are chatty – it saves me from having to talk!

  17. terrio says:

    Beth – now you’re just skeaving me out. Who puts that in a Christmas card?!

    Lindsey – I can’t imagine you not talking. You always have so many great ideas running through that head of yours. I’d be happy to talk to you through any plane trip. It would be so interesting!

  18. Anonymous says:

    LOL! Terri, I swear, people from the South love to chit chat. Me, I’ve got a sign that says “NO” on my forehead, because people always say i come off as a bitch. I’m not a bitch, I just don’t want to talk to you. That’s not difficult, is it?


  19. Anonymous says:

    People talk to me all the time. I never start the conversations but, inevitably, they feel compelled to tell me their life stories. I can’t tell you how many people have told me when they lost their virginity, where and how….yes, how.

  20. terrio says:

    Di – I don’t think your sign says NO. LOL! I just think you talk too fast and change subjects so much people can’t keep up.


  21. terrio says:

    OMG! They tell you how? That’s only slightly less gross than the gynecological stuff. But I think I’d rather hear about an encounter in a back seat than an encounter with the stirrups.

    *Ick!* to both.

  22. Santa says:

    BTW, that annoymous poster was me! I don’t know why I forgot to post my name. Oh, now I remember….CRS which is another reason folks tell me everything. I can’t remember a thing about it afterwards!

  23. TiffinaC says:

    I almost forget people that I know more as acquaintances then as ‘friends’ love talking to me…and guess what they always feel the need to share?

    Their sexlives, there sex sorrows…hell anything sex…I guess that is the vixen shining through

  24. irisheyes says:

    These posts are cracking me up!

    Beth, you definitely win with the lady paying child support for her husband’s mistress. How absurd!

    I’m rather quiet day to day, but when I’m on vacation I sort of let loose. I’m a people watcher and I love to observe and watch people. I’m fairly well versed in small talk and keeping a conversation going, but will rarely start one. Unless of course I find out the other person is from England, Scotland, Ireland, etc. In that case, I become very talkative.

    I developed a great attitude about meeting strangers about twenty years ago. When I was in my early twenties a group of friends and I took a cruise. They messed up the seating arrangements for dinner and we were “stuck” with 2 elderly gentlemen. Those dinners were a blast. Sitting next to Ian from Scotland and George from NYC was absolutely the best. They were the consummate gentlemen – pulled out our chairs, bought us drinks, sat only after we sat, etc. I always managed to grab the chair next to Ian. I loved listening to him tell of his homeland and give us youngsters advice on all the young bucks on the ship!

    I’m not very talkative, but I do love to listen and learn about new people. I think it’s great fun!

  25. terrio says:

    There you are, Irish. I’ve missed you lately. I went on a cruise years ago and I was stuck with the other girls in my room. It was a HS band trip and I’m thinking it would have been much more interesting had we gotten to share the table with strangers. Of course, even then I could talk most people’s ears off.

    Santa – I see you trying to be all sneaky. It doesn’t work if you out yourself. LOL!

  26. Janga says:

    I actually like the talkers too. Like Lindsey, I am shy, and the talkers take all the burden off me. I have discovered over the years that some people can ramble for hours with only an occasional “Really?” or “How interesting!” from me. If the person turns out to be a bore, I cal always tune them out and inhabit my own thoughts.

    I admit that I have a couple of friends who inspire me to do the same thing. One repeats her stories ad infinitum, and one we affectionately call “the Mouth of the South” with reason.

  27. irisheyes says:

    Hey Ter! It’s nice to be missed. 🙂 RL has been taking up an extraordinarily huge amount of time lately and I was on vacation last week.

    Someone mentioned a while ago about it being slow on the boards since summer started. I think it’s true. Ever since the kiddies got out of school I don’t seem to be able to surf the net as much as I’d like.

  28. alcoment says:


    I’ve just started reading your blog, I think it’s great, well done!

    I’m one off those people who other people will talk to all the time. In shops, taxis, on buses, anywhere. I also get asked in shops to get things down off shelves. I’m not sure why but I seem to attract people who want to talk. I don’t have a problem with this and am usually happy to talk, though am often reluctant to say if I’m not. I often think that I may be the only person they talk to that day, so don’t mind giving a bit of my time, and you never know, you might meet a new friend!

  29. terrio says:

    Janga – if you didn’t talk then think of all the knowledge and wisdom you would be depriving us.

    Irish – yep, kids and vacations seem to be keeping people away. This fall should get crazy. *g* Glad you found the time to pop in.

    Alcoment – welcome! Thanks for stopping by. I never thought about the “only one they talk to that day” kind of thing. But I don’t mind when people talk. Unless it’s obvious not a talking situation. Not long ago my pizza delivery guy stood at my door telling me about some show on television he liked to watch. It was awkward to just stand there with the door open holding the hot pizza. I thought he was never going to leave!

  30. Stephanie says:

    LOL…hilarious stories! Terri, you and I would likely have the longest conversation known to man simply because we have the same ability to talk to anyone on a plane! I don’t ever intend to get into conversations yet it still happens!

    I do try to appear as though I want to quietly read but usually I’m the one that makes a comment about the weather that leads to what type of tea one prefers. Dangit!

    Beth…I don’t think any plane story will ever top the child support mistress! And Hellion…I’ll be your accomplice should said Guy spoil the end of HP.

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