Why You Don’t Want to Sit Next to Martha Stewart on an Airplane

updated May 24, 2019
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If you’ve ever been forced to endure a flight seated next to someone who decided to bring a tuna salad sandwich as their carry-on item, then congratulations — you’re fully prepared to be Martha Stewart’s seatmate. The OG lifestyle guru recently told the New York Times what her travel essentials are, and for the most part they’ll make you hope you never have to share an armrest with her.

“I try to avoid plane food most of the time,” she harrumphed to the Times. “I just don’t find it very appetizing. And my hard-boiled eggs are just so much better than any eggs on the plane. They’re from my own chickens. I take them for everybody I’m traveling with.”

While I have not traveled as much as the First Lady of Impossibly Perfect Handicrafts, I have never been handed a hard-boiled egg on an airplane. The only thing that sounds worse than one person eating a mid-flight hard-boiled egg is being surrounded by an entire group of people who are all eating eggs. Just because you know the chicken by name doesn’t mean that its eggs don’t smell like the humid armpits of a sulfurous hellbeast.

“If it’s a long flight I’ll take some very good food that I know I’ll want to eat on the plane,” she continued. “I might make a delicious smoked salmon sandwich on seven-grain bread.”

Oh, good! She saves the fish sandwich for the longest flights. If terrible airplane etiquette was a criminal offense, salmon sandwiches and hard-boiled eggs would pretty much guarantee that Martha would be back in a numbered jumpsuit. (OK, admittedly, she also said she sometimes packs tabbouleh salad and homemade yogurt with applesauce.)

I’m not the only one who disagrees with her choices. Anna Post, an etiquette expert and spokesperson for the Emily Post Institute, told CNN that air travelers need to be considerate of everyone who’s sitting within sniffing range of their meals. “You don’t want to be eating the hot meatball sub,” she said. “You don’t want to be having tuna salad or an egg sandwich or really heavy, saucy foods.”

So basically, if your seatmate looks vaguely familiar and seems to have very strong opinions about baking pie crusts, you might want to wait for a later flight.