The manspreading debate rears its ugly head on Reddit’s “Am I the A**hole?” page from time to time and here we are again!
And this time it happened on a plane…
So did this guy act like a jerk for what he did?
Let’s take a look at his story and see what’s going on here…
“A few months ago I (26M) was alone on a long flight, ~6 hours.
I had a middle seat between a young woman (20sF) in the window seat, and a woman (30sF) on the aisle. I’m tall and am never comfortable on planes. My knees always dig into the seat in front and it can be quite painful. I usually try to take a walk around the airport before flights to stretch my legs, but neglected to this time. It was Spirit airlines so even less legroom than usual.AdvertisementAdvertisement
About half an hour after takeoff I found my left knee inching to the side for the sweet relief of open space — specifically, the no-man’s-land in between seats, level with the shared armrest. But I wasn’t paying attention to my knee the entire time. I’ll concede it’s possible that at some point I was occupying space that rightfully belonged to my window seat neighbor. All was well for ~2 hours.
At this point, the woman in the window seat called over the flight attendant. She asked her something like “Could you tell him to keep his ****ing leg in his own ****ing seat.” With horror, I understood she was talking about me. I instantly retracted my leg in deep shame.
She added something about “his enormous d**k” — my understanding was that it was meant to be a snide reference to the idea that spreading your legs is about male genital comfort. But she wasn’t speaking very clearly, and the flight attendant (50sF) didn’t seem to understand her. The FA asked her some sort of clarifying question but she didn’t answer and eventually the attendant went away.Advertisement
I had been shocked into silence, but when the FA left I frantically began to apologize. But she refused to speak to me. She acted like she didn’t hear me. Instead she started furiously texting on her phone (yeah, texting during a flight. I thought it was weird too). Aisle Seat woman said she had some extra space on her side I could use, but then promptly went to sleep. Oh well.
I tried again to apologize to Window Seat woman, but again she ignored me. I went from embarrassed to confused. I kept replaying it in my head, wondering why she didn’t simply ask me to move my knee instead of calling over the attendant.Advertisement
I started sneaking peeks at her phone. My defense is that I was baffled by her behavior and wanted answers. I’ll admit that I was being judgmental, too. Here’s why: she spent the last 3 hours of the flight watching tiktoks about shaming obese people and texting someone she called papi. I didn’t see all of it but a significant portion was definitely about me; she wrote “Men really do be too much sometimes” with a laughing emoji.
She ignored me the whole rest of the flight and I ignored her. I got a good but painful workout of whatever muscle it is that keeps your knees together.”
Check out what folks had to say on Reddit.
This reader said he’s an a**hole and he needs to pay for more legroom.
And this Reddit user offered up some other options for him to consider.
And one individual said this guy is an a**hole and that he doesn’t deserve the benefit of the doubt in this situation.
The manspreading thing is a real issue, but it sounds like this guy really didn’t mean it.