Gays must leave the plane

Posted recently by Tobester in the Hoax Forum:

I couldn't resist doing some research on this. Here's what I found.

a) It's definitely an urban legend.

b) I can't find any record of it ever appearing in the New York Times.

c) The earliest mention of it I can find in print dates back to July 10, 2000, when it was discussed in the Sydney Morning Herald. Apparently, in a version circulating back then, they were identified as the source of the tale. They denied this, pointed out the tale was an urban legend, and noted that in earlier versions of the story American Airlines was referred to as the carrier.

d) Despite being an urban legend, it has occasionally been reported in papers as real news. For instance, the Belfast News Letter reported it on April 19, 2003. The Scotsman reported it on February 2, 2001. And The Gleaner reported it on March 13, 2004.

Exploration/Travel Literature/Language Urban Legends

Posted on Tue Jul 29, 2008


That's a pretty old story. Jan Harold Brunvand collected it in one of his books. I know it's in one of the ones I have.
Posted by Nathan Filizzi  on  Tue Jul 29, 2008  at  11:54 AM
I never thought this story was even remotely believable. People with names that have meanings in other contexts do not use their names casually (people named Gay or Gaylord don't go around in formal contexts saying "I'm Gay!". No "ticket agent" would ask "Are you Gay?" either. This is obvious setup for a joke turned into urban myth.

Now, maybe I could write my own urban legend about enraging a plane of passengers on the way to a *Lord of the Rings* convention. I could be rudely awaken by flight attendants who say I was making too much noise while asleep. Then I could confusedly shout I was "talking in my sleep" (which gets misunderstood amongst Tolkien fans on the plane and I get pummeled for heresy and disrespect).
Posted by Floormaster Squeeze  on  Wed Jul 30, 2008  at  12:18 PM
"People with names that have meanings in other contexts do not use their names casually (people named Gay or Gaylord don't go around in formal contexts saying "I'm Gay!"."

Well, I actually did know a guy with the name Gay, and he really did go around introducing himself by saying something along the lines of, "Hi, I'm Gay!". And it did cause some confusion and misunderstanding. Granted, the guy wasn't exactly all there mentally, and seemed confused as to why people were getting all confused.
Posted by Accipiter  on  Wed Jul 30, 2008  at  12:43 PM
My name means "evil" in German. So if I say, "Ich bin Böse" it literally means "I'm evil."
Posted by The Curator  in  San Diego  on  Wed Jul 30, 2008  at  01:03 PM
Right Alex, but to say "I am named Bose" you would not say "Ich bin Bose" but "Ich heise Bose" so there wouldn't be the problem.
Posted by Christopher Cole  on  Wed Jul 30, 2008  at  02:50 PM
I often encounter a similar situation... we here in Amurrica have a strange, hybrid retail/petrol animal called The Convenience Store, where you get many odd things, but pay much more than usual... After putting some motion-lotion in my tank's tank, I'm often asked by the clerk at the register, this stupid question: "Did you have gas"? My responses range from: "Yes, but I farted just a moment ago, and you should be smelling it soon", to: "Yes, and I'd like to pay you for giving me gas, gas-lady"... I don't get out much
Posted by Hairy Houdini  on  Sat Aug 02, 2008  at  01:42 PM
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