Us vs. Them


It’s finally come down to it.

The big confrontration between a flight attendant and a passenger on a major airline. Gloves are on….DING! In this corner, Steven Slater is being crowned a hero for putting his foot down and fighting back when a passenger, who (in the other corner), got up to retrieve a bag in the overhead compartment while the plane was still taxiing down the runway. The passenger told Slater to “F*** Off!” when he asked her to remain seated until the plane came to a complete stop.

She then proceeded to pull her bag down from the overhead compartment and hit Slater in the head with it. That’s the end of round one.

What happened in round two?  Slater lost it. He shouted some profanities on the loudspeaker, grabbed a beer or two from the airplane fridge, then proceeded to open an emergency exit, swishing down the slide to escape any further wrath from the irate, luggage swinging passenger. And, I will point out that he happened to look outside onto the tarmac before launching the inflatable run, so he wouldn’t hit anybody with 3,000 pounds of pressure. Safety first, people.

No TKO’s, but with all the downgrades that comes with the rising cost of airline travel these days I’m waiting for passengers to be asked to remove their shoes prior to take off, when these little trap doors open up under our feet and all of us have to run, really, really, REALLY fast for the plane to take off in order to save on fuel. But, they’ll still charge us $50 for any additional luggage. I wonder if we get slippers for all that physical labor? They removed blankets, didn’t they? So, I guess no slippers….damn them.

Is this recent news story a surprise to anyone? Airlines have basically stripped any customer service and customer focused amenities that help to make air travel a more pleasant experience in order to cut costs. Let’s face it: Some of us are afraid to fly. Maybe we want our complimentary peanuts with our $10 8 oz. glass of watered down chardonnay….it takes the edge off and helps us forget about planes being hurled into buildings.

But, we don’t even get peanuts anymore (see one of my earlier blogs). We get to sit on tarmacs for hours and hours and sweat next to strangers who may or may not have a contagious cough. With all the surliness in the stale airplane cabin air, the flight attendants need to keep order and police those who want to bend the rules.

Why?

FOR EVERYONE ELSE’S SAFETY, THAT’S WHY.

Who the hell does this passenger think he/she is? This passenger swore at Slater because Slater told the passenger to sit down. Rules are rules, damnit! If you don’t like the rules when you fly in an airplane, then don’t fly!

Slater shouldn’t be the one to be thrown in jail – that damn passenger should be the one to be fined for breaking airline rules.

Everyone has a breaking point and Slater’s profanic rant and hasty exit from the airplane is a result of that breaking point. I guess you can say he just had a bad day at the office.

I’m sure there are two sides to every story, and perhaps we haven’t heard all of it. I guess I’ll just fasten my seatbelt and wait for what you have to say about it.

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