Another Flying Mystery *UPDATED*

Posted on December 22, 2008 8:55 am

On the Northwest planes I flew on this weekend, the overhead compartments all had a sticker on them that said “Latch Bin Closed.” The sticker is on the inside so it is concealed when the latch is closed, i.e., the overhead compartments have a sticker saying “Latch Bin Closed” that is only visible when the latch is open. Why?


I guess I was reading it wrong and it’s actually a command. “Latch [the] bin closed.” To which I say, “Who the hell do they think they are?” All that hassle with airlines, and now they have the overhead compartments bossing me around? Latch your own damn bins!

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43 Responses to “Another Flying Mystery *UPDATED*”

  1. No One of Consequence says:

    You know how when you buy things, they sometimes have an “inspected by” sticker? This is the same thing. It just so happens those particular overhead compartments were inspected by a Saudi named “Latch Bin Closed” (pronounced LAH-teh Bin CLO-sed)

  2. Robert Arvanitis says:

    Bureaucracy is parsimonious with words and meanings in a way it is NOT with money and regulations.

    You’ve seen the street signs – “Slow Children.” When I was in grade school, I thought that was unnecessarily cruel. But the bureaucrats REALLY meant “(Drive) Slow(ly to protect) Children (at play).

    Likewise the label save ink and hides the meaning, a double play for regulatory hacks.

    It SHOULD really say “Keep the latch bin closed once bombs and/or weapons are stowed.”

  3. ImperialDave says:

    You’ve seen that Twilight Zone episode with William Shatner, right? Well, that sign is for the Gremlin that lives on each plane. They put it in a different overhead compartment on every flight, and it needs to know for sure that the compartment is latched and closed.

  4. Big Al says:

    :) Look, just latch it when you close it. Everything will be just fine.

  5. MWFawbush says:

    Damn Frank, why didn’t you say you overheard some pinhead with an Obama/Ayers lapel pin scratching his graying faux dreadlocks in confusion over the “Latch” sticker? Now my sense of condescending superiority is confused and I hate that.
    I mean, why we don’t have an imperative tense in our language!
    When you want someone to do something, you have to add an interjection!
    “Hey s***head! Latch the f***ing door closed so it doesn’t pop open in mid-flight and let a 40lb. carry-on fall on the beverage cart before I get my m*****f***ing watered-down drink and I have to go monkeysh*t on you people.”

    Merry Christmas Frank, and to all you other whack-jobs too.
    Have a kick-ass New Year and God bless every last one of you whether you like it or not.

  6. James says:

    Frank, you know those bumper stickers with the tiny print that say “if you can read this you’re too close”? Same thing.

  7. Jimmy says:

    “Latch Bin Closed” means you can’t get in the Latch Bin. It’s closed. You’ll have to find your Latches elsewhere.

    “Latches” is actually Dutch for “The Bar.” Just like the Urban Dictionary defines the Dutch name “Fleming” as:

    1. Fleming

    One of the most straightest people in the world.
    “Wow i feel like a fleming.”

    2. Fleming

    One who doesn’t understand jokes and forever states the obvious.
    “That’s the joke, Fleming.”

    3. fleming

    A Homosexual obsessed with scat.
    “Did you hear Mike is a Fleming.”

    There. I’ve done my research for the day.

  8. ussjimmycarter says:

    First, you flew Northwest? Only Homosexuals and retards fly Northwest! Since you could obviously read the label might I suggest you spend some time in either the Loring Park area or the always lovely Gay 90’s nightclub! Either offers chances for a good Christmas “buggerin’ a plenty”!!!

  9. Wacky Hermit says:

    It’s a reminder to you to latch the bin closed when you’re done. Kind of like those labels on the blowdryer that say “Do Not Use While Sleeping”.

  10. DamnCat says:

    You read the sticker but did you actually close the latch bin? If the latch bin is left open you’ll have latches rolling around all over the place.

  11. TFM says:

    You read it wrong. It’s not telling you the Latch Bin is Closed, It’s telling you to Latch the Bin Closed. Latch is a verb in this case, not a noun.

  12. PaleoMedic says:

    Ah, great mysteries, like wondering whether the fridge light is on when the door is closed.

    Meh. I got nothin’ today.

  13. Rick says:

    I have a bunch of snow on my lot today. Good thing theres no sign that says Shovel the snow – cause that would be a lot of work

  14. Eric says:

    C’mon, this is an obviously simple thing. Just think like a damn liberal. As a helper, imagine not long in the future all buckets will be required to have an arrow and some stupid statment indicating which end is the open one. If the idiot moonbat messiah needs instructions on how to remove a bucket from his head, how much worse off are his minions when they get trapped in the overhead bin?

  15. cptnmoroni says:


  16. Fast Eddie says:

    I was actually tempted to reply with an explanation and an accompanying derogatory comment.

    Then I thought better of it (especially since others had already done a much better job) and decided to make a humorous play on words which I note has also already been done.

    That left only “commenting on others comments” (which I’ve sort of already done) or leaving a long rambling comment about how maybe I’m not so “fast” and should change my name (which I’m not going to do because I’ve already invested so much time in getting an avatar of Fast Eddie from the movie “The Hustler”).

    So I’m just going to do what any Liberal would do in a similar circumstance…

    ..It’s all Bushitler’s fault.

  17. PammyV says:

    This is what happens when we outsource anything written in English. Bad translators, that’s all.

    Latch (the) bin (to) close (securely)

    EVen if the plane was made by, say Boeing, the sticker was probably produced in China or another country where conjunctions, prepositions and the like don’t exists. (Not that I speak Chinese, I’m making an educated guess….having dealt with many people who speak English as a second language)

    Merry Christmas Translation: (Enjoy yourself on a) Merry Christmas (day….and don’t drink too much and embarrass yourself at the in-laws)

  18. Rubeus says:

    So the Overhead Compartment Gnomes know when it’s safe to come out.

  19. Plentyobailouts says:

    Because, if you could see the label when the bin is closed , it may mean the bin is open, then the label makes no sense.

  20. Max Shiraz says:

    I looked into this and apparently it was written by the same guys that writes “This page is intentionally left blank” on an otherwise blank page

  21. snarky says:

    Doesn’t anyone use proper English anymore?!?! It’s supposed to say “Latch HAS BEEN closed”! BEEN not BIN!

  22. RS Creed says:

    You have to understand that Latch Bin Closed is a distant cousin of Osama Bin Laden

  23. Fiftycal says:

    i think this is allah’s way of saying FINISH HELLRAISER!

  24. cincinnati_bob says:

    I think it should read. “Latch Bin Closed, Especially if you’ve just heard an announcement that the plane was delayed because of engine trouble, but It’s Fixed Now”.

  25. Harvey says:

    Glad to see I’m not the only person who hasn’t read the word “bin” without thinking of terrorists for the last 7 years or so.

  26. HCG says:

    Yo, 50 cal. Are you saying allah doesn’t know the difference between an old gore-filled horror movie and a great sci fi short story that has been cruelly dragged out for months on end? (HellRaiser vs. HellBender)

  27. Terry_Jim says:

    They bought the planes from the defunct SouthEast Airlines,
    whose stewardesses used stickers that said,
    “This here Latch Bin Closed, Sugah” and
    “This here Latch Bin Opened, Honey”.

    After painting over “This here” and “Sugah”,
    NorthWest just left the last stickers on the Latch,
    along with the gum under the seats,
    and chicken coops in the baggage hold.

  28. Al Maviva says:

    No more than 45 pounds can fit in the bins without compromising their integrity. The bins should reflect this, because it’s an important safety point. I’ve written to several airlines informing them that I think that when a bin is fully laden, a light should come on stating “bin laden.” Why they haven’t done this yet is beyond me.

  29. BadAndy says:

    Really, latch your own damn bins. Also from the overly possy department on flights: Why the hell does it matter if my seat is in an upright position for takeoff. I like to fall asleep while the plane is taxiing (sp?) and the upright seat causes my head to roll to the side and then I end up drooling on my leg or the leg of the person next to me. Done properly, this can be an amazingly effective pick-up tool but still, I’d be more comfortable if my seat was reclined.

  30. Plentyobailouts says:

    BadAndy, your seat must be upright and your seatbelt fastened so that you properly “squished” when the plane collides with the ground. The seat belt prevents your escape.

  31. BadAndy says:

    Plenty, you hit on the insaneness of all these “precautions”. When a plane hits the ground, water or large buildings in NYC at 300 MPH, the position of your seat, the locked and upright tray tables, the flotation device under your seat, the oxygen over your head, the exit door location all become pretty irrelevant.

  32. Dohtimes says:

    Written words CAN be confusing. And totally useless to the blind and liberals. Audio will help one, and a boxing glove on a spring will help us laugh at the other. Booiinnngggggg. Thump. Thud. Hahahaha, stoopid hippie.

  33. Aaron Horrocks says:

    Engrish 4 Airlines

  34. ussjimmycarter says:

    Have you seen the “flight attendants” on a Northwest flight recently? The women look like they just walked out of a Russian Gulog and they were the warden! The plane tilts from side to side as they move from their left leg to their right! And God help you if you request ANY service of ANY KIND! Their arms are too “plump” to reach up and latch the overheads…and then their are the boy attendants! If you get past getting your butt oogled by one of these nancers, they are unable to lift your luggage to the overheads so basically you are on your own! Again, only Homosexuals and Retards fly Northwest!

  35. Jimmy says:

    Merry Christmas, ussjimmycarter!

  36. 4 of 7 says:

    #34 – ussjimmycarter,

    Well, I’m not a homosexual.
    If I’m retarded, does that mean I get to board the plane first?

    How did you become so familiar with what goes on inside a Northwest plane, Hmmmm?

  37. 4 of 7 says:

    Just kidding!

  38. ussjimmycarter says:

    I live in Minneapolis and flew these losers for over 300,000 miles back in the late 80’s. I still don’t want to get on an airplane because of them! Terrible company with terrible planes run by terrible executive with terrible employees and terrible unions with terrible on-time records and terrible service and terrible lost luggage performance. Other than that they are great!

  39. ussjimmycarter says:

    Fly Southwest whenever possible. They are actually friendly at the gate and they don’t charge for a glass of water!

  40. ussjimmycarter says:

    Merry Christmas Jimmy!

  41. ussjimmycarter says:

    Merry Christmas to all the Snarksters here on IMAO who brighten my day every day! Thanks!

  42. BadAndy says:

    Merry Christmas everybody! Remember to stand uner the ‘missile’toe!

  43. Jimmy says:

    Christmas jokes:

    You Might Be A SCROOGE If:

    * You get your Christmas tree at a rest stop at night.
    * Your only holiday decoration is a rotting pumpkin.
    * You buy all of your Christmas gifts at a store that also sells gas.
    * You give kitchen utensils as Christmas presents.
    * You watch football games on Christmas day while eating nachos and drinking beer.

    You’ve Had Too Much Holiday Cheer If:

    * You tell your best joke to the rubber plant.
    * You start kissing the portraits on the wall.
    * You take off your shoes and wade in the jello salad.
    * You pick up a roll, and butter your watch.
    * You refill your glass from the fish bowl.

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