Culture

Snakes on a plane? How about a scorpion on United?

Commentary: A man says he was stung by a scorpion that fell from an overhead bin while flying the friendly skies.

Technically Incorrect offers a slightly twisted take on the tech that's taken over our lives.


Hitching a ride on United?

"Mike" Michael L. Baird, Getty Images

You never know what you're going to encounter on a plane these days.

It could be a member of law enforcement desperate to drag you off and break your nose. Or it could be some sort of dangerous creature that you wouldn't normally expect to find.

We're used to snakes on a plane. However, a man flying on United Airlines from Calgary, Canada, to Houston, Texas, on Sunday says he was descended upon by a scorpion.

As CBS News reports, Richard Bell says the scorpion fell from an overhead bin. Had the scorpion encountered some especially odorous hand-luggage up there?

The scorpion, perhaps dazed by the idea of being among the masses -- even though this was business class, allegedly stung Bell under the fingernail.

"It was lucky that it hit my nail more than my skin I think," Bell told CBS News,"so maybe my thumbnail saved me a little bit."

Bell's wife, Linda, told CNN: "My husband felt something in his hair. He grabbed it out of his hair and it fell onto his dinner table. As he was grabbing it by the tail it stung him."

United didn't immediately respond to a request for comment. The airline told CNN, however: "Our flight attendants helped a customer who was stung by what appeared to be a scorpion on a flight last week. Our crew immediately consulted with a MedLink physician on the ground who provided guidance throughout the incident and assured our crew that it was not a life-threatening matter."

It seems that the scorpion wasn't dragged down the aisle and removed from the plane. Instead, it was euthanized in the toilet, says the Washington Post.

It's been a week in which the friendly skies have taken a turn for the hostile. Perhaps the scorpion is a symbol of an airline stung into action.

One can only hope that Bell recovers fully from his trauma. And that next week a boa constrictor isn't discovered trying to bump a paying passenger from their seat.