Traveler Stands Up to Troublesome Passengers

October 26, 2014

in Passenger Stories

Fight back. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.

1. Say “NO.” Flight attendant asked me to move so two lovebirds could sit together – I was in left side on aisle with a broken right foot in a cast! I looked at my foot, then her, and said adamantly, “NO!”

2. Some naive French woman asked to change seats so she could be with her – clearly adult – daughter. I was in an aisle seat and she wanted me to take her middle seat. “F– NO!”

3. Southwest from San Jose – smarmy tech exec asked me to move so he could sit next to his colleague. I answered that there were plenty of empty seats behind us for them to cozy up together.

4. Got in trouble for this one – screaming meemie behind me; I had one of those miniature marine air horns and blasted it. “Oops, didn’t know I had it in my pocket! How it got through security I’ll never know.” I hope the Helen Keller foundation has found new members.

5. The guy/gal with the tuna fish or Asian slop lunch they decide to open next to you. I’ve been restrained, but visibly holding a cloth to my nose. Two plans not yet acted on:
a. Start retching in the vomit bag – if there is still one available.
b. Bring aboard a tightly sealed sandwich of liverwurst, onions, and Limburger cheese. Open and slather over when assaulted by neighbor’s lunch bring-aboard. Cough out some tidbits during your demonstration.

6. In airports as well as on tarmac – obnoxious cell guy/gal. I had a guy in my space high-decibel yeehawing on his phone with obnoxious white-trash (they all like to talk “southern-like”) accent. So I called my wife who was in another part of the airport and started yelling in the same obnoxious accent. Example: “Git back over here, gal, damn plane is gearin’ up to leave yer ass alone here and me done gone leave!!” I noticed that the guy soon shut up.

{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

Aaron October 27, 2014 at 4:12 pm

You certainly sound like a flight from hell!


Zombie October 27, 2014 at 4:15 pm

So — here we see how an intransigent passenger makes the experience worse for all.

(1) A smart traveler might have noted the broken foot to the flight attendant, and managed to get an improved seat. Mr. Intransigent instead just says no.

(2) French speaker gets nice story to tell friends and family at home about rude American — asked to change seat, and rude American uses obscenity instead of politely declining.

(3) Mr. Intransigent adds insult to his denials.

(4) Mr. Intransigent is clearly proud of his auditory assault on everyone around him. You should have been escorted from the flight for that one.

(5) Nothing like a little racism.

(6) Airports are noisy places — may as well add to it.


Daivd October 30, 2014 at 1:53 pm

TOTALLY agree. What a pighead.


Chollie December 2, 2014 at 6:49 pm

“…and managed to get an improved seat.” What the…? Are you serious? People who work for the airlines don’t care if you’re a qudrapalegic. They aren’t giving out squat, no matter how much honey is in your jar. Money is the only way anyone gets anything. If broke leg guy didn’t pay for it, he isn’t getting an “improved seat.” BTW – I wish they would improve all the seats on these freaking thirty plus year old jets.


Zombie December 22, 2014 at 3:30 pm

I've seen it happen — but I avoid cattle airlines like Spirit, United, etc. I still see decent customer service on Virgin America.


CloisterBelle October 28, 2014 at 5:56 am

I’m not sure if the poster thinks people will be impressed by his antics. I think the overwhelming opinion will be “douchebag.”


Creeper October 29, 2014 at 4:22 pm

OP is an ass.


Robert October 30, 2014 at 12:22 pm

He obviously had pissed-upon Cheerios that morning……


Daivd November 3, 2014 at 3:33 pm

Can we say entitled, arrogant, ugly AMERICAN. I mean who keeps an air horn on their person when traveling. He was just looking for an excuse to use it. Just Pathetic.


RJ November 4, 2014 at 6:40 am

I’m a very polite person and I actually do not disagree with the poster except for the air horn if that part were really true.


Laura November 11, 2014 at 12:58 pm

Considering the OP never mentioned that he was from America, those of you making the assumption that the OP is a "rude American" are perhaps being slightly assumptive and therefore — shocking — rude. Calling someone ugly and rude based on an assumed cultural background and a racist affinity toward said cultural background makes you just as big of an ass as the OP. Well, maybe not. But it makes you an ass.


Ludo July 29, 2015 at 3:47 am

Well it happens that if you work with turists you'll notice that, although most people are polite regardless of their origins, the impolite ones have a way to be impolite that is often specific to their culture.

It's simply not true that a jerk is a jerk, nothing is universal.
For example, American jerks often speak loudly, just like Chinese jerks. Thai and Japonese jerks however don't raise their voice, even when they are angry and self-righteous, because their culture prevents them to.
According to your culture, you will have a bias that will make you think (if you're a jerk) that speaking loudly always makes you wrong no matter what (Thais) or that screaming is "normal" when you're wronged (USA).

This has nothing to do with race. As far as I know, there is more than 1 race in USA, yet being loud when angry is clearly a rather common behaviour.

Hopefully, there are more nice people than jerks in every country I lived in, so I do agree that no one should have a negative opinion of a whole country – but work with turists and no matter how patient you are, you will, believe me, start to classify jerks as well.


Turbofixer December 22, 2014 at 1:26 pm

I fly over 100 times a year due to commuting. I have been doing it for five years. People trapped in a pressurized tube need to be civil to each other. Sure, you get the random idiots who don't have a clue how to conduct themselves on an airline flight but they are the exception and not the rule. If they realized how ridiculous they appeared to others (which they do not) I assume they would not do those annoying things. I just assume that they do not fly very often or they would know better.


Michael L.S. December 30, 2014 at 7:50 am

I don't see why so many are dumping on the O.P. Air-travel is stressful and tedious enough as it is, without jerks bothering you with B.S. Let me sit in my seat, use a half the armrests, and mind my own damn business; you do likewise. I do NOT want to be bothered with seat-change requests and the like.


Zombie December 30, 2014 at 3:16 pm

It depends on the way one is approached, and how one responds. In this case, it seems to me the original poster is politely requested to make an accommodation for the benefit of a fellow passenger — and responds rudely. That's how I read it, and I think that is how others are reading it. If you politely decline, I think you'd get more respect.


PESMITH August 5, 2015 at 3:36 pm

Sounds like a load of crap to me- 6 stories like this from 1 person? Flights From Hell is heading back to the bullshit abyss that plagued it a few years back-


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