And I Had to Wonder …  
b y L y l e R . H i l l  
inter storms across the  
West and Midwest had  
caused hundreds of flight  
cancellations and the situation at BWI  
International Airport on this particu-  
lar Friday evening was somber, bor-  
dering on depressing. Most travelers  
had already given up and headed to  
the local hotels but I wasn’t ready to  
abandon hope just yet.  
The weary agent working the United  
counter had told me there was still a  
chance, however slim it might be, that  
I could get back to Chicago by way of  
Cleveland on what would be the last  
flight out. But I had also been warned  
that while I might make Cleveland, I  
may not get any farther.  
And I had to wonder … was I better Would he file a suit against them be- Mr. Obnoxious that I had not cut in  
off trying to get halfway home or call- cause the weather prevented the airline line and had indeed been there for  
ing it quits and trying to get a meal and from taking him to where he wanted to some time before he had arrived. Mr.  
some rest?  
I heard his voice long before I actu- co-defendant?  
ally saw him. His language was coarse With the exception of the loud and line-cutting scheme together. The  
as he screamed into his cell phone. obnoxious lawyer, it was unusually line moved along and ultimately, the  
Someone is going to pay for this,” he quiet in the terminal, but, because soft-spoken ticket agent announced  
yelled. “United Airlines has no idea there was only one agent, the line that we were going to board and head  
who they’re dealing with.” moved slowly. After a prolonged pe- to Cleveland.  
And I had to wonder … was this guy riod of inactivity, the obnoxious one And I had to wonder … will the night  
be? Would he name Mother Nature as a “O” grunted and mumbled some-  
thing about the two of us being in a  
simply having a really bad day, or had tapped me on the shoulder and as be spent in a rented bed in Ohio, or at  
he been genetically programmed at I turned to see what he wanted, he home in my own?  
birth to be obnoxious?  
The annoying man, who was now You gotta wait your turn just like the  
standing directly behind me in line, rest of us.”  
barked at me. “No cutting in line, pal.  
continued on page 69  
continued on with his cell phone con-  
And I had to wonder … does he  
versation, and it didn’t take long to really think I cut in line ahead of  
learn that he was a personal injury him, or had he been so engrossed  
attorney who was on his way to Chi- in his cell phone conversation that  
cago for a very important meeting the he didn’t notice anyone around  
next morning. He was also quite clear him?  
L y l e R . H i l l is the managing  
director of Keytech North America,  
a company providing research and  
technical services for the glass and  
metal industry. Hill has more than  
in stating that “if United knows what’s  
good for them, they’ll get me to Chi- gentleman in front of me, with  
cago tonight, or else.”  
whom I had made small talk  
And I had to wonder … or else what? when I first got in line, informed  
Before I could answer, the  
40 years experience in the glass  
and metal industry and can be reached at lhill@ You can read his blog every other  
Monday at  
USGlass, Metal & Glazing | April 2017  

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