UNFRIENDLY SKIES

Flight Plan: Nosy Stewardess Outs Canadian Airplane Passenger

After reading about the gay couple who had their sex toy removed from their luggage and taped to the outside of a checked bag, Canadian writer Donald D’Haene was inspired to pen a column about his embarrassment at the hands of airline staffers when he and his hubby were just trying to get to Toronto:

One time Maurice and I used our Air Miles and took an 8:50 a.m., 43-minute Air Canada flight to Toronto. I was on the phone up until the last minute so we boarded separately—in fact, I was second last—but it didn’t matter as we had preassigned reserved seats together. When I finally walked down the aisle of the plane, Maurice was still trying to fit something in the overhead compartment. As I stopped at our seats, I heard the stewardess’s voice: “Sir, can you sit at the back of the plane.”

Notice the punctuation. Yes, said like a statement, not a question. I quickly glanced at my ticket.

“No, I have the right seat number. I’d rather sit here.”

“I’d rather you sit at the back,” she continued in an imperative tone.

“Why?” I asked in exasperation.

“It’s best.”

I was not a happy air miles flyer but I didn’t want to make a scene. “Okay, then!” I retorted in frustration. Picking up my carry on bag, I took two steps towards the back when I was interrupted by her voice again: “Is there some reason you want to sit up here?”

Oh, other than the fact that was my assigned seat? Even though the entire plane could hear this conversation, I kept my cool. ”It’s okay.”

“No, tell me why you want to sit up here!”

“You don’t want to know. Trust me.”

“No tell me!”

Remember the old E.F. Hutton commercials, “When E.F. Hutton talks, everyone listens”? There was dead silence on the entire plane until my always-silent Maurice finally spoke.

“He’s my partner!!!!”

“I’m sorry. I didn’t know you were together. Of course, you can sit with your partner.”

“That was weird,” Maurice said under his breath.

“I know. I don’t feel like coming out this early on a Tuesday morning!”

We hope Maurice and Donald at least got a free upgrade for their troubles.