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A Spectacular Exit For JetBlue Air Steward As He Turns The Air Blue

August 11, 2010

There are times, as any worker dealing with the general public knows, that the urge to tell a difficult customer about themselves, or slap them cold is overwhelming. But being a professional means you have to swallow it. And the arse that calls him or herself a ‘customer’ knows it. Well one such arse got the flip side of the professional coin and the person to provide it was Steven Slater, flight attendant of JetBlue Airways. He endured one bad passenger too many and had had enough.

Howard Beale from the 70s film Network

I'm as mad as hell and I'm not going to take this anymore!

His plane from Pittsburgh landed in New York. As it taxied, one passenger decided to go for their luggage in the overhead locker even though they had been ordered to remain seated. Slater confronted her and received a torrent of abuse. He was hit on the head by the open door of the locker. He demanded an apology. Miss thing wouldn’t give it. Cue the meltdown.

An Aeroplane in the blue sky with clouds

The sky wasn’t the only thing that was blue

First, he walked to the front of the plane and made the following announcement over the PA system: “To the passenger who called me a motherf***er, f**k you. I’ve been in the business 28 years. I’ve had it. That’s it,” he then grabbed his bags and a couple of beers from the galley, opened the emergency chute, slid down, went to his car and drove home. Absolute class. I would love to have been on that plane. It certainly would have made for an interesting end to the journey. Unfortunately he could be facing jail on charges of criminal mischief, reckless endangerment and trespassing, but hopefully it won’t lead to that. According to some news reports, he’s caring for his mother who has cancer. That’s an enormous stress. No wonder he lost it. He’s grappling with a life-changing event and he’s supposed to put up with that petulant little madam? I don’t think so, and neither do the thousands who have joined Facebook pages in support of him, because they’ve either witnessed this kind of nonsense or have been on the receiving end and are sick of it. This could be the future, ladies and gentlemen, where Ninja public workers will no longer take shit – bring it on!

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13 comments

  1. Working with customers like that on a steady basis would turn St. Francis into a misanthrope. Sounds like Steven needed a break-it’s good he went home.


    • You’re right about St Francis. Even Jesus and the Buddha would’ve had their work cut out keeping calm in the face of such awful plane passengers. We’ll have to see how this one plays out. Perhaps he’ll receive a light sentence, but regardless of what happens from this point on, he has made his mark on the world. His fame is assured.


  2. I’m not sure why there aren’t calls for the head of the passenger that gave him trouble.


    • I think everyone is still locked onto Mr Slater. When the dust settles, there’ll probably be a call for the fool to be given similar charges since she decided her needs were more important than the safety of the other passengers.


  3. […] Flight Attendant Steven Slater’s meltdown has been fairly well publicized in the media and by bloggers from around the web. […]


  4. Steven deserves a lot of support, but that cow of a passenger will be laughing herself silly. How can we pressure the airline involved to act like a decent employer?


    • Do you mean a decent employer to Steven Slater? Would you expect the airline to support him 100%? Perhaps they should, but I imagine as a business, they don’t want to be seen to be supporting someone who lost the plot, when airline staff are supposed to be unflappable. We don’t really know if they are supporting him, or not. I certainly don’t remember reading about it one way or another, online or elsewhere. Still, in the apparent absence of this support, the Facebook community has started the ball rolling. I read in some reports that one person in the group has even set up a fund for him, I assume to cover his bail and maybe his lawyer’s fees.

      The person who behaved in this manner on the aircraft is but a small example of what you can encounter anywhere, if you’re unlucky. However, let’s try and put it into perspective, because most of our travelling and general daily living experiences are nondescript and even pleasant. So when we’re stuck on flights with muppets who are beyond unreasonable, I think the most useful thing we can do as a passenger is support the airline staff when they come across it. Become a community. If enough people stand up and tell people like these to get a grip enough times, they will have to behave and it will send a clear message that the general public will not tolerate tools like these.

      Thanks for visiting my blog. I hope to see you again.


  5. I LOVE what he did: the fact is he did exactly what everyone has wanted to do at some point in their life. Besides, the woman was an ignorant, arrogant idiot who deserved to have abuse thrown at her down the plane tannoy – nobody blamed her for it though did they? And yet loads of people must have done this to him at some point in time, otherwise he wouldn’t have snapped so easily.


    • We still don’t know the identity of the person who started the trouble as far as I know. Perhaps she’s been hidden away for her own safety! Ooh, ooh, I know, she may be in talks with some paper or TV thing and will eventually tell her side of the story – for a fee. Let that fee go towards the bail she’ll need to pay if and when she’s eventually charged for putting other passengers in danger and possibly common assault.


  6. Bravo for Steven!

    Speaking as a mall cop, there are times when I wish I could do what Steven did. There’s a PA system at the mall I can use. And I would have a larger audience! 😀

    I don’t know if the airlines will support him. Probably not. Since he (Steven) himself violated protocols and walked out while on the clock.

    At work, I try my best to avoid difficult customers because on my first day, I was specifically told by mall management that in the event of any sort of conflict between a security guard and a paying customer, the management will almost always support the customer.


    • Being a mall cop is a bitch, isn’t it?


  7. The poor man, he got it all wrong! He should have chucked HER ass out the emergency chute. The service industry takes way too much abuse, if they were allowed to respond, there’d be way less bitter customers!


    • You’re not wrong, SBC, you’re not wrong.



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