So we were on the plane coming back from the Youth Specialties in Austin last night, enjoying what was about to be a very full plane from Dallas to The OC. They flight was oversold, so they offered several people $300 and a hotel voucher to stay behind and take a morning flight. This thing was going to be packed.

So we all got on the plane, that lovely “human” smell gathering thickness before they turned on the airflow to those turn nozzle vents (why can’t they just leave them on? that nasty garlic-armpit-BBQ-throwup air kills me). There were like 4 seats left empty on the plane with just a few minutes to go – and one of them happened to be next to me. I mumbled something to Andy about the possibility of my seat staying open on a jammed flight – speculating on what the odds were in that really happening.

“Two to one,” a stranger in front of me said. He was mid-fifties, and clearly enjoying our conversation. Since I only had $1 left from my per dium, I put it on the line.

A few more passengers got on the plane, filling 3 of the 4 seats left. One large man speculated that it might be his seat, and a lady looked at me and that seat from row 2 to 22, but it stayed empty the entire time. American had paid someone $300 to not get on the airplane, and then there was an empty seat. That, of course, was fine by me, since I got to spread out while everyone else was packed in like a sardine.

As soon as the plane started to taxi, the man opened up his wallet and handed me $2. That was one awesome flight.