Fed up Flight Attendant!

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iVillage Member
Registered: 02-21-2003
Fed up Flight Attendant!
76
Tue, 08-10-2010 - 1:20pm

Slater (the fed up flight attendant) has become an overnight symbol of the fed-up wage slave who's just not going to take it anymore.

personal note:

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iVillage Member
Registered: 07-12-2005
Wed, 08-11-2010 - 8:13am

Flying sucks. But I am not sure I understand your comparison between your husband, who presumably flies twice a week, every week, as a passenger, and a flight attendant, who flies twice a day and is expected to solve or address the complaints and discomfort of every passenger on the plane. If anything, I would think seeing your husband's experience, and then magnifying it times about ten, would make you more likely to see the Fed Up Flight Attendant in a positive light.

My opinion on the guy is that he did what so many of us have (at some point or another) wanted to do but didn't out of fear. Fear of losing our livelihood, fear of judgment, or just plain fear of being disliked. While I would not make the choice he did, I do have a certain degree of admiration for someone who threw the fears aside. Now, if he had been in a nice, cushy job where he had been treated well, that would be different. Flight attendants, though, have one of the crappiest jobs I could imagine. Besides the constant travel and being away from home, I do not think they are treated very kindly on a regular basis. I have never been on a flight where not one person got rude with a flight attendant. Even if I had 75 nice passengers, having 1 on every flight who is expecting special treatment, blaming me for every thing that goes wrong, refusing to adhere to rules would be enough to throw me over the edge after a week. I could not live in that constant state of biting my tongue, smiling, and being kind to people who do not deserve it. Add in the guy's personal life problems, I think it is no wonder he snapped. I would imagine that a large part of the folk hero following is made up of people in customer service related professions who are good enough at their jobs to keep their frustrations inside, but who really, really wish their customers would develop some compassion.

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-24-2008
Wed, 08-11-2010 - 10:04am
A hero, in reality or mythology, who is loathed by the rich and powerful but idolized by the common people, often stealing from or rebelling against the former to make life better for the latter.



I kind of doubt he'll turn into a true folk hero. We'll see if his popularity is momentary or fleeting. The way I see it, he got pissed off by a passenger, he didn't do his job, he got himself arrested and he dropped the fbomb on a plane full of what were probably "common people" including I'll bet some children. He did nothing to help common people that I can see. I wonder how the next flight of "common people" felt if their plane was delayed because they were now short a crew member, or how great it was for the "common people" that an airplane suddenly and needlessly required a $25,000 replacement exit chute. He might have some momentary popularity, but when I travel I would not be heralding flight attendants who can't keep their cool in the face of an irate passenger, who uses that as an excuse to verbally throw up on me too, and takes action that would delay me from getting to my job, or home to my family.

Say not, 'I have found the truth,' but rather, 'I have found a truth.' -Kahlil Gibran



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Ten Rules for Being Human


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"The key to good decision making is not knowledge. It is understanding."
Malcolm Gladwell Blink

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-02-2010
Wed, 08-11-2010 - 10:35am
That would all depend on the employer, I assume. Not all employers want and need to know if someone has ever been convicted of a crime.
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-24-2008
Wed, 08-11-2010 - 10:51am

A flight attendant might fly 10 trips a week, but that is their job. My husband currently flies 4 every week and then still has to do his full time job on top of that. He doesn't know when he leaves for the hour drive to the airport if his flight is going to leave on time, or leave at all. Last week there was a delay with the first flight, causing him to miss the second flight, and his only choice was rent a car and drive 6 hours to his final destination, putting him at the hotel a few hours before he had to wake up, get to an important early meeting and then work all day. He's rented a car driven home 10 hours because the other option is to miss a half of day of work. Sometimes the only option is to miss work because of the delay, missed connection, or cancellation. This is typically not due to weather. He's been re-routed to an airport one state away, and two states away, meaning that he flew two flights and still didn't end up near home. In those instances he's had to rent a car to drive home, get up the next morning, and drive two hours round trip to get his car back from our airport.

While most airline employees are just doing their best, when they have a bad day odds are it's going to affect his day too. And given the amount of flying he does, I think it is a decent comparison. He is the passenger, it can be very frustrating and he can't quit. Because he can't quit, he has to persevere and so what he does is put on his traveling attitude to ensure nothing, but nothing, no matter how troubling, will make him lose his cool. He always, always "goes with the flow" and accepts any and all issues are out of his control, and he has to endure it. This is what he does no matter what sort of crisis might be going on in his personal life.

Flight attendant might be a difficult job but I wouldn't put it up there as the most difficult. How would we feel if a prison guard was fed up with an irate inmate, and took to the PA system to curse at everyone, then stole and destroyed property, hurting his employer and leaving his team short handed. How often are prison inmates out of hand compared to airline passengers? Or a nurse in the emergency room that just got hit with a flying bedpan, taking the intercom to say she's taking this job and shoving it along with dropping the fbomb because the fbomb was just dropped on her, stealing and destroying property as she walked out the door leaving everyone behind her, the hospital, her coworkers and the patients, in a bad spot. I think being a flight attendant must be difficult, but there a lot worse jobs than where people are under extraordinary pressure, charged with protecting the public and doing it even when it can be a very difficult thing to do. I can certainly understand someone snapping, especially if they are in the midst of a personal crisis, but I don't think it's some great thing. I think it puts people at risk, and hurts the very people the "folk hero" is supposedly representing.

John Q Public might be on his side right now, but we'll see what happens the next time John Q Public takes a flight, experiences a delay, and has some second thoughts about flight attendants up and quitting the way this guy did.

Say not, 'I have found the truth,' but rather, 'I have found a truth.' -Kahlil Gibran



Photobucket

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Ten Rules for Being Human


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"The key to good decision making is not knowledge. It is understanding."
Malcolm Gladwell Blink

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-24-2008
Wed, 08-11-2010 - 11:06am

Do you think this is unlikely to affect his ability to get a next job? He might find one that doesn't ask if he has a previous conviction, or chooses not to do a background check, but he might interview with someone who has read the story, when verifying employment they might ask the airline "would you rehire this employee" and the HR department might have a policy of stating yes/no if the person is eligible for rehire.

I think he's seriously limited his earning capacity by handling it the way he did. A realization he might be coming to very shortly. Apparently he also faces jail time if convicted. It looks to me that his ride down the emergency chute was only been the beginning of his self inflicted downward slide.

Say not, 'I have found the truth,' but rather, 'I have found a truth.' -Kahlil Gibran



Photobucket

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Photobucket
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Ten Rules for Being Human


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"The key to good decision making is not knowledge. It is understanding."
Malcolm Gladwell Blink

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-02-2010
Wed, 08-11-2010 - 11:14am
I wouldn't assume anything. This is not the first time someone has done something and they don't go on with their lives.
You are aware that flight Attendants do not make much money, correct?
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-16-2010
Wed, 08-11-2010 - 11:38am
I wouldn't assume anything.>>

Kevali


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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-02-2010
Wed, 08-11-2010 - 11:44am

I wouldn't assume anything.>>

What is she assuming? She is speaking the truth. By quitting his job in a grand fashion (stealing company property on his way out the door on top of it all), he has most likely affected his future job prospects, especially if convicted. Not that I'm not a little envious of his ability to just say "To *%&$ with you all, I'm outta here!" but I'm also glad I possess more self control than that. Most of the jobs I would qualify for are with companies that probably ask those questions.

He has not quit his job.

<< This is not the first time someone has done something and they don't go on with their lives. >>

Huh? You think he's going to die? Commit suicide? Not sure what you mean here.

Other people have been convicted for things worse and have gone on with their lives.

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What does that have to do with anything?

Just a fact.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-08-2009
Wed, 08-11-2010 - 11:46am
He'd have to be fairly stupid not to be able to parlay this stunt into at least 250K in appearance fees, licensing fees, and paid interviews before he gets shipped off to do say 2 1/2 years of hard time in a low security prison facility on the taxpayer dime, which, even with legal fees and restitution and what not will probably net him at least 100K, and that's probably around two years salary for him. Then he can sue for some kind of mental stress or something from the airline, because you know, he'd have to be crazy to do something like this, and get workmen's comp and disability and a nice settlement from the airline, and well, the chute ride might not be such a disaster after all.
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-02-2010
Wed, 08-11-2010 - 11:59am
I am not even sure he makes $50,000. Flight attendants do not make much money.

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