The person with a McDonalds bag
Uhm, can you not? I’m going to have to sit next to you for the next however many hours we’re on this plane. Your bag smells like warm cat puke and pretty soon your breath will too. Chances are that collection of dollar menu items you just ate is going to give you the toots real bad. Please do your seat partner and everyone else in
Hell coach class a favor by eating your food in the airport or in the boarding line like everyone else.
The cynical traveler
Hey, I get it. You’ve already been everywhere and done everything. I bet you’re all wise and shit but that doesn’t mean you need to rain on my parade because I’m enthusiastic about my trip. Being excited does not equal being naïve. I don’t care how many trips I go on I will always be excited about traveling because if you’re not, then why the hell are you going on the trip anyway? (Assuming it’s not a mandatory trip of some sort and you’re not Orlando Bloom flying home to get your dead dad’s suit). Further more, why are you talking to me?
One time I was on a flight to Central America and the woman next to me berated me the whole time for going to Nicaragua because Nicaragua was “so much better 20 years ago.” Cool. Whatever. I don’t care. I’m just trying to get my volcano boarding on, experience the local culture as it is today, hang with the locals, and enjoy a country I haven’t been to. I don’t care when it was better because that means nothing to me. Right now. On this plane.
Babies are adorable when they’re not your own. While I can appreciate a recently fed, changed, uncrying toddler like the next person, I genuinely disenjoy sitting next to an unhappy child. Or even a happy child. They have no filter. They stare at you until you’re so uncomfortable you feel obligated to entertain them. I have tons of empathy for parents who are trying to quiet their crying baby on a plane because no one wants to be them, but finding out the person next to you on a plane has a baby is like the opposite of winning a lottery ticket.
I don’t think it’s a big deal if someone wants to throw a couple back on a long flight, especially if flying makes them nervous. What I do think is a big deal is when the person next to me gets so wasted they’re slurring their words, being an ass to the flight attendant, and crowding my space because their drunkery has removed any sense of boundaries. Slow your roll on the drinks, partner.
The chatty Cathy
I loathe small talk. Something about it bores me to tears and the whole time I’m having it with someone I’m thinking, “why the fuck are we even having this conversation? It’s about nothing!”
This isn’t to say I haven’t met some really great or interesting people while in flight but people who talk just for the sake of talking need to chill out. I paid damn good money for this flight and I’d like to enjoy my tiny bag of pretzels and can of Coca Cola Classic while reading my Jodi Picoult novel I bought in the airport alone without your motor mouth ruining my secret travel behavior.
The guy trying to get laid
When I was 19 I was on a flight to Houston for a layover and this older man told me he was an Italian shoe designer and asked if I would come back with him to his house in the city to “hang out” and he would get me a ticket to my ongoing destination later. He had sexy George Clooney hair and I admit the words “Italian shoe designer” danced around in my head for a second but then I was like, LOL no. Not trying to end up on Dateline.
This is just one example of guys trying to get laid either in the airport or on the plane. Joining the mile high club doesn’t sound that exciting to me and certainly not with a random business traveler I just met who’s probably married or some backpacker on his way back from Nepal that likely hasn’t showered in three months.
Okay, so to be fair I’ve never actually flown with my mom. Any vacation we’ve taken together was by car and she doesn’t travel very often. However, I can already imagine her sharing her gum with me and touching up her Wet ‘n Wild hot pink lipstick in a little compact mirror right before spending half an hour debating on if the coffee she received in the airport Dunkin’ Donuts really was fresh or if the cashier was just full of shit. My mom is adorable but there are just certain tight spaces even the closest of people should not share for more than 20 minutes.