Flyover Country

A Passage from Luminous Airplanes, or Things As They Were: A Hyperromance


I use the term with a certain amount of irony, because in fact I incapable of getting on an airplane. I have been afraid of flying ever since 9/11/2001, for reasons which may already be clear. So this is the story, among other things, of a grounded person, not in the emotional or psychical sense (which I can’t stand), but in the literal sense that I refuse to leave the surface of the earth—except to go below it. When I have to travel, I take the train, or, in a pinch, I drive Norman Mailer’s car. The expense of the former and the extreme old age of the latter go a long way towards explaining why I have spent almost all of the last six years in New Haven.


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