Passengers From Hell: The Worst People To Sit Next To
By Aditi Kumar
From the many responses we received from our poll on what people are the most bothersome and least desirable to sit next to, we were able to put together a list of the worst traits of fellow travellers.
Frequent flyers have a decreasing tolerance for the quirks of other humans, especially if those quirks are not lovable idiosyncrasies but idiocies and other intolerable stuff… like BO for instance.
Most of us have encountered these people, but, like a bad dream, we tend to let it pass and forget about it. But hey, it is good to find something to complain about.
So, onwards, here’s everyone’s list of horrible travellers, in no particular order. I have taken the liberty of putting descriptions to everyone’s pet peeves. So the list is not entirely mine, but the angst entirely is.
The Armrest Pig: If you think that only the very tall or very fat are space invaders, think again. Armrest hogging is not the privilege of the large. I have encountered scrawny, bony ass dudes plonk their grubby elbows right on my part of the armrest. If I had a dollar for every time I wanted to poke someone’s funny bone…
Mr Full O’Beans: Please, please, please watch what you eat before you take a flight. I know there is no food like Indian food but seriously, must you step on the gas? A plane is an enclosed space. There are fellow passengers. In my earnest appeal, there are two excellent products in the market that will keep you from expelling your noxious fumes into the noses of hundreds of your hapless victims. Pudin Hara and Gastrina. They’re Indian. Ayurvedic, I think.
The Sadder Bladder: Maybe you have a peanut sized bladder, maybe you have a medical condition or maybe you consume diuretics in appreciable quantity. Whatever be your case for my sympathy, I am sure you know how frequently you need to go to the loo. Why then did you not request an aisle seat? Why not ask me to switch seats with you? Are you that inconsiderate that I must close my laptop, unbuckle myself when the fasten seatbelt sign is on and get up to let you through and again when you come back? And repeatedly?
The Deeper Sleeper: If you have a loud snore, there are products that keep your nostrils wide open and keep you from competing with the Pratt & Whitney twin jets for volume. I am sorry for pricking your arm with my pencil and drawing blood but I already have a good head on my shoulders. I don’t need yours, snoring into my ears.
Ms Au Natural: It’s called deodorant. “De” stands for removing and “odor” is that unbearable pong you call, “you” – the one even your Mom pretends to tolerate. And much as you believe in nature, civil society has some standards. In this civil society, we all agree on a code of etiquette and common courtesy. One such courtesy is the use of deodorant – to mask one’s own noxious fumes. Eating spicy beans and potatoes before a flight is one way to break the code. To smell naturally bad does not even pretend to excuse. Honey, use the eff’ing deo. I am not not your mum.
The Perfume Factory: Uh oh… you took my advice above a little too seriously. I said, “deodorant”. I don’t think I specified spritzing yourself with half a bottle of Poison by Dior. You choke me. Not emotionally.
The Door Whore: I have never understood the rush for the door. I do understand getting ahead of the queue for immigration and customs. But we just landed in Coimbatore airport. You asked for and got a window seat. I am on an aisle seat. How does elbowing me out of the way help you? This does not happen anywhere else in the civilised world. Here’s my plan. You wait till someone stops and lets you reach for your large steamer trunk you managed to stuff into the overhead bins and lets you out. If that does not do it for you, fly First Class. Or else, be polite to us fellow cattle class schlubs.
The Phoner Boner: It’s one thing to switch on your phone as quickly as possible when you land. You want to check your mail. Your social media. You want to instagram your selfie with the chick you just met on the flight. You can do all this quietly, without bothering your fellow passengers. Here’s the loutish way: “Hello?, hello” HELLO! I AM ON THE FLIGHT. JUST LANDED. DID YOU SEND THE CAR?…” No one thinks you’re an important guy. You sound like a total bollocks. Oh, and another thing… don’t fake a phone call. We can all tell. And we don’t really care.
Keeping Up With The Jones-eys: Ok, you’re really into each other. I’m sitting next to you and it’s adoring that you look deeply into each other’s eyes. And then you lean across and you kiss briefly. And then a little more deeply. And then it’s a mess of teeth and tongue. And then the groping. And then — someone help me here — the request for a convenient blanket. I would still leave well enough alone if I did not not have to put up with the moaning, the flight attendant having to talk to you across me and the occasional elbow in my ribs. And your giggling apology. Ok, I confess I am jealous. Whatever gets you to stop.
And my absolute worst nightmare…
Crying baby: No description required.