People of Vacation

7 Feb

You see some pretty fun stuff when you travel, especially at the airport. It’s a great place for my favorite game: People Watching.

There are the schlep rocks who can’t be bothered to get out of their pajama pants and slippers, as if the airport is just one more stop on their international sleepover. Thanks for making the effort, guys.

And once in awhile you get the glamour girls, who somehow manage to look perfect, sitting on that uncomfortable black plastic chair like they’re headed to a last minute shoot in Milan. You have to admire the commitment it takes to decide on the 5-inch stripper heels when  you’re going to be spending the day walking through an airport. Mad props.

And of course there are the rest of us, trudging from security to gate (still wrestling with our belts and shoes) to baggage claim in jeans, sweatshirts, sneakers and flats.

But aside from the regular stuff, I noticed a few things in the last two weeks that made me sit up and notice; things that really made me stop what I was doing and scratch my head.

Kind of like People of Walmart for vacation.

I know this one may be controversial, but here goes. Ladies, if you’re planning on having your boyfriend or husband carry your bag, do everyone a favor (especially him) and take one that’s plain, or at least simply decorated. For God’s sake, please leave the man some dignity and do not expect him to carry a fluffy duffel covered in cute little chickens and roosters. I wish I had a picture of this one, because I saw it happen. That poor man, rushing through the airport with his wife, his slumped shoulders loaded down with three quilted, hand-made rooster bags. It was not cute.

And I’m sorry to say, but Vera Bradley bags are out too. Nope. I can hear you groaning from here but I’m with the men on this one. If you’re going to make him carry it like a shackled beast of burden (which is perfectly acceptable) then it should at least be gender neutral. Ask him. Look him in the face and say, “Hunny, do you mind carrying my pink paisley bag?”

Of course he said no, you’re married. That question is second cousins to: “Hunny, do these jeans make me look fat?”

Come on, people! Really? I know I don’t want to see grown ass men strolling through the airport with bags covered in cute puppy dog applique. It’s a little pathetic and smacks of desperation. I don’t want my husband looking like that, no matter how much I like my bag.

Exception: If you are a grown ass man carrying your own frilly bag with cute little appliques, go on with your bad self. Like Emily Litella said, “That’s different. Nevermind.”

This one is pretty simple, and also something I discovered at the airport. We were probably more disposed to it in Hawaii, flying between islands where the Freebird, Dirtbag Surfer lifestyle is more prevalent, but still. When I can smell you and your family, as in your reeking BO is crawling around the plane on legs of its own, growling at everyone, then your organic, whole wheat, alternative lifestyle has crossed into my world. Now your perfectly acceptable choice has become an intrusion; call it an invasion of my sinuses if you want. Take a shower or stay on the compound.


This one I caught out of the corner of my eye as we were heading to dinner one night. Yep. That’s matching hawaiian print. I get it. You’re all worked up about being in Hawaii. Maybe it’s even your honeymoon. Good for you. But take a deep breath; your souls have been joined for eternity, not your closets. Here’s the thing. Matching outfits don’t work for a family headed to the amusement park, they don’t work when it’s day-glo safety orange golf shirts on the 4th of July (you know who you are) and it still doesn’t work on your honeymoon in Hawaii. Sorry.

Exceptions: If you are in 2nd grade and planning a matching outfit with your best friend. Maybe.


Different island, different resort. Same bad choice. Actually, in this case, the old man pulls it off. But I’m presenting it as an example of what not to do. Wearing pastel pink slacks with socks to match (obviously purchased together) is not a wardrobe decision to be taken lightly. Most men will never make it work.





Exceptions: If you are the original Brooks Brothers Playboy, Thurston Howell III or Evan R. Lawson (CFO of HankMed) from USA’s show, Royal Pains.

Come on, you know this is what iPhones are for.


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