After waking up at 3 a.m. this morning in Denver, wading through lines of people, suffering insomnia while flying and exiting into the stench of cheap barbecue that permeates the Memphis airport, I wasn’t feeling much of a Christmas afterglow. My wife and I then had to move gates while we awaited our final connection to home, and at the new gate all the seats were taken, so we were stuck sitting on the hard and cold floor across from a woman reading a book titled: Elvis: What happened?.
Then, I turned to my right.
A boy, maybe 5 or 6, sat on the floor nearby, playing with what had to be his new Christmas toys — a large beetle with menacing pincers and what seemed to be a Decepticon that could transform into an even-more-threatening T-Rex. These very evil looking toys held sway over the grounds and skies of Gate 34 as terrified (or tired) fliers sat and hardly moved.
But lo, what was that in the sky? A flash of blue. A blurred shadow. Swooping from the heavens came our saviors, Batman and Superman, held aloft by another boy of the same age. Into this deliriously dangerous setting they descended, straight into a battle of epic proportions that waged on and on, delaying the departure of Flight 577 to Little Rock. There was too much flying debris, of course.
With a rain of blows, DC’s finest prevailed, though the owner of the Transformer and beetle remained wholly unconvinced. “I pinched you,” he said, even as departing in defeat.
“Whoosh!” the other boy shouted, sending his own Christmas gifts on to their next adventure — a recon into the land of pink-clad Amazonians presided over by that most dangerous of enemies, the young girl.