I have the greatest clients in the world. The only problem is that they are literally around the world, which means I have had to travel via airplanes in order to show those clients some love.
For the last 10 years I’ve been on a different plane an average of 8 times per month, which has provided me an unwelcomed, all-too-intimate knowledge of the average “flyer”. In turn, I’ve developed a shorter-than-ideal patience level for clueless flyers and so you’ll forgive this little rant as I list my reviled 12 Most Annoying Airline Passenger Personalities.
1. The Costco Shopper
Seriously? Is it really possible that you don’t know you cannot bring the 2-gallon, family-sized bottle of Pantene hair conditioner through security? Do you plan to wash the hair of everyone in the country you’re visiting? If you don’t want to use the hotel’s shampoo, pack 1-oz bottles or step aside and get out of my way, you’re holding up the queue.
2. The Red-Neck Parrot
Yes, we all know you don’t want your “junk” touched. Do we really need to hear you mimicking the over-used: “dude, don’t touch my junk”? Do you think no one has heard this before? Do you think it will get you through security without any other issue? Do you really think anyone WANTS to touch your junk?! Get the scan or just shut up and move out of my way before they haul your ass off to jail!
3. The Fashionista
As if it isn’t bad enough that I have to wait an additional 15 minutes in a security line for you to unknot the laces in the high-fashion, knee-high laced up boots that you just had to wear for the paparazzi that are undoubtedly waiting for you on the plane…do I also have to wait for you to put on your belt, necklace, 3 bracelets, jacket and a British-wedding-wannabe-hat on the other side of the X-Ray machine? Dress appropriately for security checks or grab your bin and re-accessorize out of my way!
4. The Zoned-Out Flyer
What part of “please wait for your zone to be called” don’t you understand? Even the insane system used by Southwest Airlines has some form of “boarding order”. Those in wheelchairs or with kids under 2 years old board first, then business class, then frequent flyers, then coach starting from the BACK of the airplane, the middle and then the front. Simple right? Then why do you 40 people in the first 10 rows of coach insist on crowding the gate 20 minutes before they call boarding? And then show surprise when I purposely, er, accidentally shove my brief case in your back when I have to climb over you to board with my business class ticket? Wait your turn and move out of my way!
5. The Hoarder
“You can only bring ONE ‘carry-on’ bag and ONE ‘personal bag’”. Has the public education system failed us so badly that we don’t know how to count? Why do you insist on lugging 2 full-sized, over-stuffed suit cases onto the plane? Then hold up the line while 6 people and a flight attendant use power tools and a tub of Vaseline to try and jam them into the overhead bins? I’ll give you the $25 to check your bag…just get out of my way you tight-wad.
6. The Directionally-Challenged
Stand on the Right, Walk on the Left. What is so difficult about this concept? Is it not written in English, like, everywhere?! So why then do you and your 5 girlfriends insist on having an Oprah-Book Club meeting on the escalator? I’ve got places to go, people to see; stand to the right for your meeting and get out of my way!
7. The Chorus Line Dancers
You know who you are. You’re one of a 12-member family who insist on walking in a chorus line, side-by-side and at a snail’s pace across the entire width of the terminal corridor blocking my ability to make a connection at the opposite end of the airport in less than 5 minutes. Walk in a single line and get out of my way or risk you child being run over by my carry-on.
8. The Foodie
I understand that airlines are not known for great food, if they even serve it, and the food they might serve does not meet your advanced-culinary tastes. But do you really have to bring the over-stuffed burrito-to-go lunch on the plane with you? Do I really have to smell your lunch for an hour and a half on route to NYC? Or worse, watch you shove it down your gullet? Stuff your face in the terminal and let me enjoy my flight!
9. The Farter
Um, not sure what country you’re from but here flatulence is not a compliment to the chef. Do really think it was “a silent-one”? You may have noise-reduction earphones on but WE can hear the burrito-inspired music you’re playing! And even if we didn’t hear it, do you really think there’s no other way for us to detect what you just did? Take that bewildered, whodunit look off your face, skip the burrito and have a salad. You’re too fat anyway and encroaching on my space (see point #12).
10. The Chatty-Cathy
OK, so your girlfriend shouldn’t have left you alone at the bar; yes, she’s a tramp. Yes, your vendor is a jerk for not picking up the tab last night…the tight-ass. Yes, your wife is pissed that you’re travelling so much and you need to make up before you get home. I get it. I feel for you. No, actually I don’t really care yet I have to hear your stories from the other end of the plane. Why? The poor sap you’re talking to (see point #11) is just a few inches from you, you don’t have to yell. And if you’re talking on the phone, do you realize that it magically transmits your normal speaking voice across the country? You don’t need to scream your life-story in order for them to hear you. Keep it down, or better yet, shut up and let me sleep!
11. The Lonely-Heart
For the record, ear-buds in my ears means I don’t want to hear your lonely-hearts-club story. I’m forced to sit next to you, I did not choose to do so. See the ear-buds? Take the hint, shut up and let me sleep!
12. The Over-Eater
They don’t teach a college-course on this subject so I’ll forgive you for not knowing and I’ll educate you now. See the skinny bar of metal & plastic between our seats? That’s for our elbows, not for that part of your ass that does not fit into your seat. Once again, skip the burrito, get your ass to a gym and give me my half of the arm-rest back!
The business professional in me apologizes for any offence I’ve caused you. But the over-worked, always late for a flight because of traffic, weather and airline screw ups road-warrior in me doesn’t care and just wants to slap you silly! Now get out of my way!
Anybody with me?!
[Note: This was originally written as a featured post on 12Most. Check it out here. ]
By Sam Fiorella
Feed Your Community, Not Your Ego
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