The other Sanders

Last night, on a flight to LA from Houston, I met the ‘other’ Sanders — Ray Sanders, the virtuoso turkey-baster player.

That’s right, he plays the turkey baster (like a flute).

He was on his way to LA to be on the Jay Leno show (this Friday, May 23). We quickly found out through conversation that we had a lot in common: both from Texas, both love music and he knew a few of my in-laws.

This guy is a hoot! You have to visit his website to appreciate his sense of humor, and how seriously he takes his turkey-baster playing. He loves to play The Flight Of The Bumblebee or the William Tell Overture. He was a sweet, interesting and entertaining conversation partner over the three hours we sat together.

Actually, I needed to do some email catchup work and finish some light editing on my new book. In retrospect, I’m glad I spent the entire flight talking to Ray Sanders. His attitude and energy invigorated me, and I’ll have a friend for life.

The experience reminded me of a few things:
1. The work we do on planes is of marginal quality, given the horrible environment of cramped corners and distractions – so invest plane time in something more rewarding – like conversation.

2. If you don’t start the conversation, it may never happen. Ours started when I asked him what was in his little music instrument case and he responded “My turkey-baster.”

Business travel is getting harder and harder each day, due to airline policy changes. But one thing never changes: There’s a lot of interesting people flying the friendly skies if you take the time to notice.