The Nightmare Passenger

I read a somewhat controversial blog post recently that consisted of a real tossbag complaining about being stuck next to an overweight man on a flight. 

Whilst it made me question the decency of humans and the availability of the blogging medium for people whose ignorance is best unheard, it made me realize that there are much worse people to be stuck next to on a plane.

Like me, for example.

Despite having caught many flights in my life, I am absolutely hopeless at being a functional passenger.

Firstly, I don’t shut up. It never occurs to me that people might want to sleep on an early morning flight, or that – God forbid – they actually brought that books with them with the intention of reading it.

My advice is for people not to engage with me at all. Once you show the slightest crack by making a non-committal grunt or an affirmative nod, I assume all you want in this world is to hear the sound of my voice uninterrupted for five hours or more.

Headphones don’t deter me, and I don’t pick up on loaded glares. I just take it as a challenge.

I’m acutely aware of my own character flaw of being accidentally self-centered. If I don’t stop myself I’ll tell you my life story and even add embellishments if we have time. All to avoid the awkward silences.

So on flights I try my hardest to avoid talking about myself. Instead I pry into your life. By the end of the flight I will probably know your bank account details, home address and your darkest secret. I should sell my interrogation techniques to the secret service.

I don’t mean to be so talkative. It’s the byproduct of my outgoing personality when mixed with my intense fear of flying.

I’m that passenger who gasps and grabs your hand every time the plane slightly bumps. I have been known to cry and say my goodbyes in turbulence. Worse, I like to share my fears by telling you the flight horror stories that frighten me. If you’re not just as scared of flying as I am before the flight, you sure will be by the time we land.


I am more scared on a plane when I can’t see what’s happening. Needless to say, I love the window seat. More specifically, the window seat just behind the wing. I can watch the world go by peacefully and be the first to see the plane’s wing fall off in the case of an emergency and thus be quick about getting a safer vantage spot. It gives me some kind of sense of control in a huge metal contraption that should not be able to fly. 

If I don’t get the window seat, I will lean over into your lap uncomfortably to watch outside the plane. It’s certainly not the kind of lap dance one hopes for. 

All in all, I am a much worse passenger to be stuck next to in the air than an overweight person. 

Personally I’d rather be stuck next to the overweight person than the cruel guy who wrote the post. 

But that’s just me.

He might even be worse than the guy I sat next to who watched porn on his phone, or the lady who kept telling me about how she was flying to and from Brisbane in one day just to ride a horse that she felt she had connected to telepathically when she saw his picture on the internet.

Yours truly,

The Nightmare Passenger


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