Pedro Ávila

Monday doesn’t always just encroach, as we are so used to thinking. It doesn’t always creep up from the shameful ashes of Sunday night with its tentacles of consequence and fault. It doesn’t always bleed unknowingly into your waking cells like warm liquor on a winter day.

…no friends, sometimes it smashes into our existence like a temporal eighteen-wheeler doing 90 down a one-way.

Sometimes, I’m standing right in front of it.

LA again. The Grid. Traffic for days.

The Desert. the Basin.

Fake plastic trees.


I put on my money face: best suit and straight posture with a stern business look on my face that could paralyze a rhinoceros.

I fly.

Fantastic vessels of perfect engineering, beautiful and exotic people, the majestic sky in style, with entertainment and a level of service second to none.

Yeah, fucking right.

My well-traveled body knows this drill. The slow realization that what is a hip-tight seat has somehow stretched to what I’m sure is more than triple its size to squeeze the sea lion that, of course, opted to sit next to me.

And if any of you are thinking, “Oh, a sea lion – that’s like a seal right? They’re so cute. Maybe a little bigger?”

No, friend. No.

A sea lion can easily reach a length at least equal to the diameter of the fuselage of a 737, with a girth that could easily clog its turbines…I know. I know because it sat next to me.

To be shoved against the window, not by the wide shoulders of a large man, but rather by the leg fat that creeps like liquid under the armrest…that was truly a new experience for me.

If you’ve ever seen a sea lion’s skull (or seen it yawn) then you know that there are 4 canines in there large enough to shotgun a Keg with no hands or flippers. Vulnerable? Sure, it’s vulnerable…to being hit by asteroids.

The slow realizations set in:

…that the tea I’m drinking is aged and fermented enough to put some whiskeys to shame…

…that the peanuts are as stale as Jimmy Carter.

…that the thing moo-ing instructions on seat belts into the mic is the flight-attendant and that the most service that I may get out of her is the cup of tea…

…that the most cleaning this old cloth seat – this sweated-on, farted-on, spilled-on, drooled-on, stepped-on, dandruffed-on seat – has seen, is a…well, it probably hasn’t been cleaned at all since there is still a copy of last month’s LA Times and napkin-wrapped gum in the pocket in front of me…

I should have been born in the 1920′s if I wanted the sky to be glamorous.

…ahh, hell. Where’s my tea?

Airlines suck balls.

Pedro Ávila Pedro Ávila

For a reasonably sane & productive member of society (arguable, but let’s not complicate things), I’m far too mobile and unrooted. I travel quite a bit for a job that is simultaneously my greatest privilege and my worst burden.

So I write. And I write. Travel pieces, political journalism (a stretch from ranting but, still), short stories, poetry and other such riff-raff. I contribute to a handful of publications and will probably just keep going until something gives out, or someone gives in.


The Site

"It's a fresh look, based on Google's material design. The design is responsive... see? It adjusts to your mobile or tablet device, so th...… Continue reading

Of smiles and roars