Saturday, March 1, 2014

Another Airport Rant, With Qualifications

Xólotl: Dios Perro, by Óscar Becerra Mora

          I've spent enough time in airports in the last decade and a half to regard them not as portals to a destination but rather as shrines of despair.

          Airports are not so much about travel as they are about making you deeply deeply sorry you ever chose to step out your front door in search of adventure. Their sole purpose is not to help you get to where you're going but to prevent you from ever getting there, in this world or the next.

          And while they're preventing you, they like to make sure you're fully miserable. I still have nightmares about the underground corridor between the international and domestic terminals at O'Hare. It was a very long corridor, and they played awful music in it every step of the way. Not "The Worst of Disco's B-Sides" bad; but music that was physically painful to listen to. Music that made you long to gnaw your fingers off. Music that had you wondering: razor? or pills? Because making people who have just suffered through 8 hours in coach next to a screaming baby wonder if a simple act of suicide right here right now might really be the best of all the possible options is the reason airports exist.*

          So imagine my surprise when I was recently in the Denver airport and saw this beguiling creature.

I am made of papier-mâché, and I like to snack on TSA agents.

          This guy's name is Xólotl, and he is an Aztec dog-god. You can read more about him here. He is enormous and cheerful-looking and people stop to take many photographs of him as they pass through the Arrivals area. They smile when they see him. You can see them shed their heavy cloaks of airport despair for just a moment.

          He is not, alas, a permanent addition to DIA. Word on the tarmac is that he's making too many travelers happy.

*Or at least the reason O'Hare exists.

No comments:

Post a Comment