Wednesday, December 23, 2009

happy christmas!/attack of the green-inked monster

after a few days of recovery, i can share with you that Christmas at the Airport is officially the most fun thing i've ever done. who knew spending 32 hours waiting for a flight that never departed would be such a blast?

getting home saturday afternoon, i was surprised by how closely the physical and psychological experience mirrored an actual trip. i had picked the 30-ish hours timeline in part because that's the longest i've been in transit on a trip - when i went to egypt last year. Christmas at the Airport was preceded by the same nervous excitement of leaving your comfort zone and heading into unknown adventure, and the effects of arriving at the airport with my bags packed and spending the next day and a half eating airport food, drinking airport coffee, blinking under airport lights and sitting in an airport chair convinced my body that some journey was under way.

i was really happy with the final story, too, which i posted on my website. i'm still learning how to write short stories, and enjoyed this fact-fiction blend. spending 32 hours with dave in the airport, i got to know him quite well, although most of that didn't make it to the story. i felt the anonymous setting of the airport would be strengthened by leaving dave a little more unknown.

the final result is just what i was aiming for - a spiritual snapshot of the halifax airport over a 32-hour period, a sense of what was going on behind all of those stressed faces passing through security or waiting for flights to take off and arrive.

the reception was great, too - people passing by were excited about the project and tickled by the idea.

waking up sunday to see myself on the front page of the herald was exhilarating; let's just say i'm in the market for plaster to fix my ceiling after waking up to find myself on the cover of the globe and mail today. you can read my first-person wrap up for metro here, or check out the cp take on it here.

as a journalist, i am familiar with the green-ink letter to the editor: the unhinged reactions of deranged people with access to a pen. one of my favs was when daily news columnist steve bornais took an irate call from somebody threatening to 'cancel his prescription' over some story steve had written.

anywho, the herald comments section is lively today, with someone called george disapproving of my little project, and others weighing in on the various merits. my fav is this one:

Annoyed1 wrote:
Mr. Tattrie, to write a good book all you have to do is hang around the Chronicle Herald Site online and read all the comments posted by people. Happy people, nutty people, angry people, people that really seem to have come from other planet ...etc, etc .... It will bring laughter to your day .... Happy Holidays Nova Scotia ..

maybe that'll be my project for next christmas...
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