December 30, 2005


Airbus pilot maroons drunken passenger on desert island (Nigel Bunyan, The Telegraph, December 30th, 2005)

A drunken holidaymaker has been dumped on a desert island after launching a foul-mouthed tirade at the crew of a passenger jet.[...]

The unnamed passenger's difficulties began on Tuesday evening at 35,000 ft when he began abusing the cabin crew of flight ZB558 from Manchester. He refused to calm down and then turned his attention to the other 210 passengers.

Eventually the pilot decided that he posed a risk to safety and had to be removed.

Rather than continue for a further 45 minutes to Tenerife he diverted his Airbus A321 to Porto Santo. Within moments of the plane touching down the passenger was escorted to the terminal. Last night he remained a castaway on the Portuguese-controlled island. His New Year home is a mere 10 miles long by three miles wide with a population of 4,000. There is little entertainment apart from walking on the sand dunes.

How many hours of the average lifetime are spent dreaming of meting out some richly deserved summary justice like this?

Posted by Peter Burnet at December 30, 2005 3:24 PM

A few less people and there'd be no reason to ever leave the island.

Posted by: oj at December 30, 2005 3:43 PM

Is Porto Santo in Eastern Time Zone then?

Posted by: erp at December 30, 2005 4:50 PM

I found these gems on Tim">">Tim Blair's blog:

I was on a flight from Atlanta to Minneapolis, which may come as a surprise to James Lileks, is not the center of niceness in the universe.

In the seats behind me was a couple with their toddler who proceeded to kick the back of my seat. After several minutes of this annoyance I turned around and asked the parents politely to restrain their child from continuing this obviously highly entertaining activity.

The parents of course were shocked at this request and the father smugly replied, Im a lawyer, go ahead sue me, after which he and his wife heartily laughed.

I just smiled and offered the two people sitting in the seats behind the lawyer and his wife 20 dollars if they would exchange seats with my wife and me.

They did, and my wife, a real trooper, and I spent the remaining 90 minutes of the flight kicking the back of the seats of Mr. Im a lawyer and his wife.


A few years back, I lived in Hawaii and traveled frequently to the mainland, often getting enough frequent flyer miles to upgrade to business class or first class. On one flight from Chicago to Honolulu, with a plane change in LA, an extremely rude and drunk (and getting drunker) passenger in coach insisted he had an upgrade to business class. Since business class was full, he made himself a complete nuisance to everyone on the plane. While the plane was making the approach in LA (just before it touched down) he got out of his seat, took his luggage from the overhead and started making his way to the front of the plane, all before the wheels hit the ground. As we pulled into the gate, he was shoving his way past other passengers, claiming he had to make his flight to Hawaii (the same plane the rest of us were on). Total jerk.

As he made his way towards me, I stuck my big country ass in the aisle and he commenced to shoving me with his carry on. Im 62, 260, hes all of 55, 150. The law of gross tonnage was in effect. Not to be outdone, he threw his carry on over the seat to the left, climbed over (there were passengers in the seat) and proceeded to push his way forward. In the course of all this activity, it seems his tickets and boarding pass were slipping out of the jacket pocket he had slung over his shoulder. As he muscled his way past a young college girl, they fell out on the floor. She picked them up and tapped him on the shoulder and before she could say anything, he turned around and snapped at her, telling her to eff off bitch. She got a little red, but said nothing. I followed her off the plane and watched her dump his tickets and boarding pass to Hawaii in the first trashcan she passed.

Damn, that was one fine day.

Posted by: PapayaSF at December 30, 2005 7:31 PM


Did you get her name? Because I'm ready to sue her for all the inconvenience she caused me that day.

Posted by: obc at December 30, 2005 11:09 PM

Ha! But I must emphasize I am not the "I" in either story.

Posted by: PapayaSF at December 30, 2005 11:59 PM

. . . um. . . neither was I - honest!

Posted by: obc at December 31, 2005 10:23 AM