INT. MELBOURNE INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, CHECK IN – DAY DANIEL (25, neurotic, high strung) weaves his way through the crowd of people and walks up to a counter. Behind the counter stands a 30 something, overly smiley male ATTENDANT.
ATTENDANT Hello Sir, how may I help you.
DANIEL Hello, yes, just hoping to check in.
Daniel hands the attendant his forms who takes them and starts typing on the keyboard.
ATTENDANT So what takes you to Perth today?
DANIEL A plane. Why do you think I’m here?
ATTENDANT No I meant- Never mind. Well, you’ll like this, I can get you a seat next to the emergency exit. It comes with plenty of leg room, always nice to have on a flight.
DANIEL Emergency exit? What does that involve exactly?
ATTENDANT Oh nothing. In case of an emergency you’ll just be in charge of opening the door. Don’t worry it never happens.
DANIEL It can’t never happen otherwise why would then even have the emergency exit? Why would they need me to man the door?
ATTENDANT I just meant it rarely happens, I’m sure you’ll be fine.
DANIEL Rarely happens means it does happen. What if I do it wrong? What if everyone dies because I can’t open a door?
ATTENDANT It’s fine the flight attendants on the plane will run you through some training for it. It’s not a big deal.
DANIEL Well it sounds like a big deal. How in depth is this training? I don’t know CPR. Do I need to know CPR for this?
ATTENDANT No, why would you-
DANIEL Is the door heavy? Do I have to wear a special shirt? What do I do with the door once I’ve opened it?
ATTENDANT A special shirt?
DANIEL Do I open the door before we hit we hit the ground or after? Oh my God we’re going to hit the ground!
ATTENDANT No, sir, you won’t-
DANIEL I am not prepared for this job. How can you put the lives of everyone on that plane into the hands of someone who’s not even qualified? If everyone dies they’re going to be so angry at me except they won’t get to be angry because they’ll be dead!
ATTENDANT How about I find you another seat?
DANIEL Okay, yes. Maybe that’s a good idea. I, I really think you should have a properly trained employee on every plane to open the emergency exits.
ATTENDANT I’ll be sure to pass that suggestion on sir. Could you put your bag on the scale.
Daniel does so.
ATTENDANT (CONT’D) Wow that’s a heavy one.
He picks up the heavy suitcase and places it in a pile behind him.
ATTENDANT (CONT’D) Okay and here’s your ticket. Your leaving from gate 12 and your seat number is 14B. Not in the emergency exit row.
DANIEL Thank you.
Daniel turns to leave when a thought hits him. He turns back.
DANIEL (CONT’D) Is it still near the emergency exit though? Because I would like to be one to the first to leave if something were to happen.
The attendant stares blank faced at Daniel for a beat before re-plastering on his smile.
ATTENDANT Have a good flight sir. Next please