At a gate at Midway, as I waited to visit my Phoenix publisher, a mid-50s guy in jeans and a pressed shirt called someone and started talking about the other person's golf plans for the day, and the weather where the other person was.
And the big Alabama game from two nights before. (The other person, I gathered, had been rooting for LSU. "Yeah, those kids were just completely outcoached and outprepared," our man said with an easy authority that's common in people in jeans and pressed shirts.)
And an e-mail the other person had sent out that morning.
"I have to tell you, that was hilarious," said Jeans-And-A-Pressed-Shirt, without laughing. "Just great stuff. I'm going to send it to a few people who will appreciate it."
"Say look," he said, "I think I'm going to make it out to the January meeting, but probably not February. Yeah. We're going to have to look at revenue and operations, and make sure we're doing as well as we should be. Yeah. Because revenue is gonna have to be the cure-all, obviously, and revenue is soft. And if we don't have a plan for improving it, it's just not going to be enough for us, frankly. So maybe you'd like to get together before the meeting? Whatever's convenient for you, yeah, whatever works. Great, fine, that's perfect. yeah, I'm in Chicago, and they haven't had any snow here at all. Yeah, just a weird winter, yeah. Okay, well thanks, and we'll talk to you soon."