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Airline Passenger Spit On After Asking Guy Next To Them To Use Headphones While Watching Videos

Philipp Nemenz/GettyImages

Vacations do not technically start until people arrive at their destinations and their suitcases have been unpacked.

The journey can be the most stressful part of any getaway – especially if boarding a plane is the mode of transport.

After enduring traffic getting to the airport, checking in, going through long lines of security, and finding your gate, the flight itself should be a relatively comfortable experience.

Unfortunately, that is not always the case.

Redditor tiuchingtheowiay just rode a plane for the first time and found themselves in a tense situation.

The Original Poster (OP) turned to the “Am I the A**hole” (AITA) subReddit and asked:

“AITA for asking a guy on a plane to not play videos without headphones?”

The OP wrote:

“Pretty self explanatory, the guy next to me on a 5 hour plane ride kept playing let’s play gaming videos without headphones, disturbing the peace of everyone around him.”

“I asked him politely if he had any earbuds and he said no, so I asked him if he could stop playing the videos.”

“He said that it’s a shared airplane and he can do whatever he wants. I told him that there are people who don’t want to hear his videos and to be more considerate.”

“He then told me I was being inconsiderate to him wanting to watch. I flagged a flight crew member and asked to get another seat because of him, and she instead asked him to turn it off.”

“When we got off the plane he spit at my shoes and told me to f’k off if I ever see him again. This was my first time on a plane and I don’t know the etiquette.”

“AITA here?”

Strangers on the internet were asked to declare one of the following:

  • NTA – Not The A**hole
  • YTA – You’re The A**hole
  • ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
  • NAH – No A**holes Here

Most Redditors declared NTA.

“I don’t know what country you’re in, but spitting on you is considered assault in a lot of areas. And no, this dude was totally the a**hole by every culture’s societal standard. NTA.” – godrestsinreason

“spitting during a pandemic lol – that could have landed the guy in jail immediately.”

“OP why didn’t you tell the staff??” – Mesapholis

“NTA, people playing vids without headphones in public makes me rage, I can guarantee you everyone on that flight was pissed off.” – missiontomedicine

“Yeah, the rules on public transport are very similar to the rules for men using urinals:”

“Eyes front”

“No talking”

“No making unnecessary noise”

“Stay within the boundaries of your space”

“Keep a 1 spot gap between you and anyone else when possible” – daemin

“NTA. It’s universally an a**hole move to play videos out loud on public transportation without headphones. He was 100% the a**hole and I’m sorry you had to deal with him.” – swingmadacrossthesun

“NTA, the guy should be banned from flying, assholes of this size might seriously unbalance an airplane, causing it to crash land.” – Obakewriter

“Woah NTA. It’s common courtesy to have headphones in a public area. He was extremely rude, and spitting is not only horrible, but during a pandemic???”

“I’m sorry someone made your first flight this unpleasant.” – akoudagawaismywaifu

“NTA. Pretty basic stuff; if you are listening to a video in an enclosed space you use earbuds. Spitting on your shoes was outrageous behavior.” – zwergschnauzer

“NTA. Shared space means to be considerate of others and try not to do anything obnoxious.”

“Your videos might be hilarious, but I want to read my book/watch my own videos/take a nap. Please but on some headphones or hit the mute button.” – NotSoAverage_sister

“Nta- the classic case of interacting with humans. Plant etiquette is pretty much the same as bus etiquette.”

“Nothing wrong with getting someone to stop doing something annoying, sounds like the guys just a buffoon.”

“Sorry this happened on your first flight! I’ve flown a couple times and never experienced anything like this.” – goosefishduckman

“NTA You are my hero. People listening to their devices sans earphones is incredibly rude and disrespectful to all others in the space.”

“Requesting them to stop was to the benefit of the majority.” – LeahKitekt

“NTA. It’s actually listed in some in flight magazines (when available, thanks to the pandemic) that headphones are required when watching entertainment/listening to music.” – NotaDogPersonBut

“Oh hell no. That is way out of line. You are NTA and you handled it very well.”

“Polite ask, then get the pros. When you are on an aircraft, the goal is to use the resources available without anyone else being aware of it. Enjoy your meal, watch a video on the inflight with headphones or earbuds, and grab a nap.”

“Too bad you weren’t filming the guy when he went after you. Spitting on another passenger could be a no-fly list thing these days.” – atomicalex0

“NTA playing any music, videos, games etc out loud has always been a d*ck move, particularly in a small space where others can’t leave such as planes or public transport. You had every right to say something.”

“But next time you encounter such arseholery be more mindful of your safety please! If someone is that willing to be an arsehole and ignore social norms and everyone’s (likely very obvious) discomfort and annoyance then they are not going to suddenly be a kind, reasonable, helpful person when you call them on it.”

“Next time call the attendant (or authority/employee) earlier, or at least catch the eye of a few other annoyed nearby passengers to make sure you have back up first.”

“I learnt this lesson when I was 15ish on a long distance public bus ride. Someone a few seats back was playing pretty explicit gangtsa rap as loud as their shitty 2000s phone would go.”

“It wasn’t a packed bus but there was an elderly couple and a young mum with two toddlers nearby who in particular were looking annoyed/offended but studiously avoiding looking his way (this should have been a clue for me to not say anything, in hindsight!).”

“In my teenage righteousness I decided to say something and was politely but firmly telling him he needed to use headphones before I had even fully turned to look at him.”

“Unfortunately he wasn’t the disgruntled, moody, rude but harmless teenager I was expecting but a (frankly scary looking) guy twice my size. His reaction was explosive and I was (rightfully) frightened I was going to be attacked.”

“It didn’t help that he was yelling that he was on his way to his court hearing and was going to jail so these were his ‘last hours of ****ing freedom so [he] can do what [he] ****ing wants.'”

“Thankfully enough passengers stood up for me then and he was forced off at the next town, but I have no doubt that if he’d had an opportunity to corner me without witnesses afterwards he would have, just like your guy did.”

“Spitting at you was obviously horrible (particularly now) but it could’ve easily been worse in both our cases too.”

“Arseholes can and will be unpredictable arseholes when confronted, no matter how polite or in the right you are. Assess the situation and take care of your safety before speaking out in future.” – Kindly_Narwhal9251


“Flight attendant here! Its actually a rule (at least at the airline I work at) that you use headphones – we even mention it in our announcements.”

“Agree with other commenters about contacting customer support – all they need is a seat number and what flight you were on to get the other person’s info.”

“Their actions of spitting at you were wildly inappropriate and shouldn’t be tolerated, especially during a pandemic.” – ltgooseman

Overall Redditors thought the OP was not the a**hole and hailed them as a hero for speaking out.

Based on the reactions in the subReddit, the post was a good reminder to be considerate when traveling onboard any public transport.

And it would be appreciated to refrain from spitting if a concerned traveler asks a person to keep the peace for the sake of fellow passengers.

Written by Koh Mochizuki

Koh Mochizuki is a Los Angeles based actor whose work has been spotted anywhere from Broadway stages to Saturday Night Live.
He received his B.A. in English literature and is fluent in Japanese.
In addition to being a neophyte photographer, he is a huge Disney aficionado and is determined to conquer all Disney parks in the world to publish a photographic chronicle one day. Mickey goals.
Instagram: kohster Twitter: @kohster1 Flickr: nyckmo