I’m writing this as I sit in the middle seat of a 3-seat center section of a Boeing 767-300 (at first I thought this was the new fangled 767…not the case). It’s a red-eye, so it’s all about just getting to the destination (not about chatting or anything like that), and to top off the dynamics of it all the people next to me are actually together. They just didn’t want to have an aisle and a middle seat, so it’s Allan in the middle.
Often, when one is sitting next to someone in a center seat, that person is with someone else. So when you deal with that person needing to go to the bathroom, or a little elbow fighting on the armrest, it’s annoying but you just lump that person in with other experiences you’ve had with these darn’ed “middle-seat’ers” who just aren’t sufficiently considerate. [hyperbolic, of course. But I will admit to be rather judgmental when I am on the aisle and sometimes see the person in the middle seat as just a cause for problems. Legit ones – not that they don’t need to go to the bathroom – but problems nonetheless].
Well, I’m presenting the case of the middle guy. I don’t know where to put my arms right now. The person on the left is very nice and friendly but she’s using a lot of the armrest and I have nowhere to go (typing position in helping for now). The person on the right (again, this couple is together) isn’t using the armrest at all, but I think I annoyed him earlier when I asked if I could change the direction of his air vent-tube-nozzle thing (it was blowing right at me, full force, but it also requires standing up to change it). He has been gruff since then.
I also sleep with fear that I will be “that guy” and slump over out of the vertical space of mine as defined by the confines of my seat. My headrest has “wings” but I sleep with one eye (or inner ear, cochlear balance sensor) open.
I just got back from the lavatory. I felt a bit of an urge to go earlier but waited to be absolutely sure so I only had to inconvenience one or the other of my row-mates once. Not that I would not have gone eventually out of fear of annoying them, but I have to be careful. Or at least I feel that way.
And finally the two of them do in fact talk over or in front of me, I guess, from time to time. I really feel like I’m in the middle then. It’s just awkward.