Since I now spend most of my waking hours doing work that only seems to serve the purpose of keeping me from doing that which I enjoy–and yes; I do wear a name tag while doing it–this is my first opportunity to wax eloquent about two-week old backlogged material. Fear not; the information has been kept from spoiling and is indeed ready to be loosed onto the world.
So, two weeks ago, I found myself in the Lenexa Triangle, a region of the middle western United States in which life as we know it is relegated to second chair in the symphony of the bizarre. One must fight to keep the mind’s autonomy for only then can they truly appreciate the strangeness of this business. Did my two buddies really just get married? This indeed was so. Can I now say I have stood in an orchard in Missouri to witness the nuptials of people I know? Yup. Did someone really show up falling down drunk to the wedding? If I said no, you sir must hold me in contempt of this court, for I have perjured myself. Had I seen Amelia Earhart or Jimmy Hoffa in the buffet line of this buddy nuptial in an apple orchard in Missouri, I’d have thought little of it, other than to calculate how much free booze their stomachs would be denying mine.
For cert, there is more to know about this -than-abominable-but-still-rather-bizarre Triangle, but I must forge on to inform thee farther of the most treacherous demonstration of its temporal stranglehold: The airport.
While over the course of two and a half days I’d grown accustomed to the delicate temperance of the Triangle–Yes; I guess you can have a Pflumm Road and expect people to be able to pronounce it–it was from the airport that this deadly shrew displayed her most unmitigable rage. Only a Triangle such as this would allow an airport to be run by the criminally insane and the old timers that couldn’t get that Wal-Mart greeters job. Only a wench nonpareil would replace my one-stop flight with a non-stop flight…on an airline with run decidedly less precision than the evacuation from Saigon. Oh, I got my direct flight. Thirteen hours later.
Finally on a coast that makes sense and having been thoroughly flagellated by this Triangle, this demidevil, I found myself on the train home drafting some notes on how best to save my time and wallet from the clutches of the world’s other Triangles, known and unknown, that sit with maws wide open, waiting to strike.
Thusly, friends, I give you the Quahog Corollary, a formula and set of guidelines to help determine the worth of a leisure adventure involving the support of a friend or family members happening or event. Obviously, the final arbiter in the situation is the individual applying the Corollary, so the outcomes in every different circumstance are different. Even more obviously, this Corollary is based upon those of us with tight financial circumstances and/or time.
To help you better understand it, I will apply it to my own life and circumstances.
Translation: The Degree of Difficulty must be directly proportional to the Import of Relationship.
Note: It’s simple: The harder the execution of the adventure, the more I need to care about you personally. In these days post-Triangle, if the event is not Rhode Island-centric or in a nearby metropolis which can be reached fairly easily, said event will be placed under intense scrutiny before a judgment is rendered.
Below are some guidelines to better help you render a verdict. Again, these are not deal breakers, but rather, things to consider. In the below instances, “Situations” refers to the events one is considering undertaking.
- If you cannot afford it/ It consumes a significant amount of your monthly income
- If it necessitates checking a bag
- If it is a locale not worth being stuck in should an emergency arise
- Inconvenient hotel to airport distance
- If arriving at said destination requires use of another airport (because the airport closest to you does not fly to that locale), thus adding transportation hassle on the front and back end of said trip*
- If you are not in a position to figure in hotel/car rental as a pre-trip cost
- If an in-trip adjustment (flight delays/cancellation) would cause a serious disruption in your professional life**
- Time of Return: If you are not able to set foot into your home and have a reasonable amount of time to prepare for the next day***
* Not applicable to those in the New York/ New Jersey metro area.
** Not applicable to weather/ natural disasters/ airline debacles that make network and cable news
*** Not as applicable if you don’t have work the next day
- Affording: Easiest to review because it’s the situation to which the Formula can most easily be applied
- I really hate checking bags, so that hatred can truly factor in.
- Being stuck in the middle of nowhere = Not tight.
- Too much distance from the hotel to the airport makes me nervous and said distance should be reckoned with.
- If I can’t fly out of T.F. Green Airport in RI, I’m probably just not going to go. Getting to Logan Airport is, very likely, not worth the transportational orchestration.
- Falls under the heading of being able to afford it, specifically with regard to when you can figure out your financial situation for a trip and how much that will affect your monthly income. If you can’t plan/ afford the cost of said trip and have enough time to make some of that money back….pobreci.
- If your planning has you cutting it close enough that you might lose the job that allowed you to take the trip in the first place, scrutinize further.
- Time of Return is a biggie. Assuming that I have work the next day, I like to get in and be at least nominally ready for the next day. Since I’m not much of an unpacker, my rule of thumb generally evolves around feeling, on the energetic level, that I have ended my trip and am back in step with my real life.
No Excuses Clause: Reserved for those few individuals and events that transcend the Formula and situational guidelines. If you have to take three bicycles, a seaplane, and rotted out canoe, you do it and feel somewhat more gangster for having done so.
Spontaneity Clause: Sometimes in life, a buddy from Boston will call you in Rhode Island at 3:30pm and see if you want to go a Mets game at Shea stadium that starts at 7:15. Don’t be so lame as to apply the Formula here.
There you have I friends, and from the mire of the Triangle’s filthy wretchedness, a lotus has thus blossomed and spread a new gospel onto the world. Amen. Peace to Sycorax.
Penultimate Thought: If you have stretch marks about the tum tum, feel free to never wear midriff-bearing tops.
Final Thought: Though I prefer curly or wavy hair, I’m still a sucker for the slick back.