Airport people are the best, if you aren’t a shitty person.
Before I offend everyone, I’m going to toot my own horn. I’m not a shitty person. I’m like, so nice. That’s because I’ve had to practice a lot. If I had it my way, I would hang out with the same three people every day and talk to no one else for the rest of forever. Because I am this way, I’ve taught myself to make eye contact, smile, be courteous, et cetera instead of just put on headphones and power walk past everyone. This extra effort makes the rest of the world seem a hell of a lot better, because people have this amazing tendency to reflect your attitude. If everyone is shitty to you, it might just be because you’re a shitty person.
More on that in another post. I’m here to talk about airport people.
They have a bad rap, but I blame stressed travelers who are too hyped up on adrenaline and fear of schedules to dismount from their high horses. Use the stirrups, idiots. Airport people are people who are in the service industry. Their entire job is to help you. They are capable of doing a damn fine job, but like most human beings, if they have to work with shitty people, they aren’t going to enjoy their jobs very much.
Today, I got to the airport the recommended two hours ahead of my departure time. I smiled and said hi to the TSA agent who took my ticket, and he sent me to the Pre-Check line. I forgot that I was Pre-Check, and he could have just let me wait in the long line to take my shoes off and laptop out and juggle all my stuff to get out of the next busy traveller’s way, but he didn’t. He smiled, told his buddy to let me through, and wished me a great rest of my day.
My flight ended up delayed, so I went to Starbucks to get food (I’m white and from California, judge me). I’m also a vegetarian and I eat mostly raw foods, so I got ordered a banana from the nice barista. I mentioned how awesome it was being tall (I’m 6’1”, she was probably 5’11”) and she gave me two bananas, free of charge.
Since my flight was so delayed, I was naturally anxious. I went up to the gate desk and asked the agent if she could assign my seat early (Delta does this at the gate, idk why but whatever). She smiled and said I would have to wait for the next gate agent, but told me to hang out near the desk for a minute. Her flight boarded, the agent for my flight walked up, they exchanged a whisper, and I ended up getting my seat confirmed early.
On the plane, the flight attendant accidentally bumped my elbow with her cart. She profusely apologized, and I made a joke about my praying mantis limbs getting in the way. She laughed and gave me a bag of cookies.
All it takes for airport people to do extra things for you is to be nice. It’s so incredibly simple, yet it blows my mind how few people do it. Smile at people. Tell them their hair is pretty. Wish them a good day. It’s simple and takes an extra 2 seconds of your day and could make your airport experience a million times better. I’m sitting in the terminal of my second delayed flight, smiling and making friends with the people around me, because I am in a darn good mood from being not shitty to others. Revolutionary.