So, I’m TRE to NYP yesterday (that’s train talk for heading to New York from Trenton) and I hear the little “ping” telling me I have a text from Johnny. Johnny is a male corporate traveler who is now apparently serving as a third party agent for me in gathering blog stories. I have encouraged him to just write a story directly for my blog, but he thinks the blog is “chic” or rather “chick”. (Maybe he means both!) So, on his behalf, I will tell you his travel tale, but first some background.
I met Johnny PHL to PBI in November 2008. I know this because we were heading to an industry conference that is always the first week of November and I was studying for my Series 7 exam. For those of you outside of financial services, the Series 7 is a mind numbing 3 hour exam with 250 questions about securities, securities law, compliance, options, and how and when one files or doesn’t file offerings with the “administrator” (whoever that is!). When taking this test, one must never make the mistake of thinking, “hmmm…well, if this situation were to happen at my firm, I know we would do ‘B.’” That’s a sure mistake. Never apply reality with the questions posed on the Series 7. Oh, and if “ask the administrator” is in the answer, pick that one. (Reminiscent of Beckett, if you ask me.)
In any event, I was in 3A and Johnny was 3C. As a rule, I don’t talk to people on planes (unless of course they are a nine time pro-bowl safety). 95 out of 100 times you will regret talking to your seatmate. On this flight, my seatmate had the flu. He was miserable and talking on the phone to someone saying how he wouldn’t make the dinner because he was too sick. Something told me we were going to the same conference: a high-end 401k conference held at the Breakers Hotel in West Palm.
I did what any female corporate traveler faced with a flu-ridden companion would do: I positioned my 4 inch Series 7 binder directly up and to the right blocking any wayward saliva or errant achoo from getting me!
But something beckoned me to talk to him and shortly before landing we struck up a convo. We quickly established that we are in the same industry, were going to the same event, were neighbors, and go to the same gym. Plus: we have the same birthday (9/11!), we go to the same street on the same NJ beach, and we both go to Denver regularly. We suck at golf but we don’t care (unlike our partners!)
As I said, Johnny’s been a bit ambivalent about my blog. This doesn’t surprise me too much. He is the kind of friend who tells you when you’ve gained three pounds but not when you’ve lost ten. Or, if you do lose ten, he wants to know when you’ll lose the next ten. I support him in kind.
So, yesterday found Johnny PHL to DEN when he realized he was next to someone famous and started shooting rapid phone pics. The text he sent had the guy’s profile pic; the second one shows him without shoes. Turns out, Brad Lidge (aka: Lights Out Lidge) was his seatmate and Johnny needed some professional advice. Who else to come to when talking Phillies trivia? In July 2008, we (uh, that’s Phillies for those of you who don’t know me) signed Lidge from the Astros and he recorded 41 for 41 saves for Philadelphia that year – the same year Philadelphia won the World Series.
Please! Talk to him, I begged! Ask him: what would you do to turn the team around? Why is Papelbon so weird? Why didn’t you accept the announcer job?
But, truth be told, Johnny wasn’t going to talk to him and I knew it. He was just having some fun seeing someone famous, texting someone not famous who writes a chic chick blog about the adventures and misadventures of (female) corporate travel. And, to my delight, our texting digressed into gym gossip and praises of mutual adoration….an easy way to kill time TRE to NYP.
So, that’s one person’s response to my question after I met Dawg (#20) about meeting someone famous. If you’re a traveling mole and want me to tell your story, let me know!