I don't write about current events. It's not my thing. I write about pretty little homes and pretty little things to put inside them. But ever since the story unfolded about Jet Blue's Steve Slater and his unusual exit, I have thought about him a lot. I've also thought about how the world has embraced him. At last glance, his Facebook page was over 150,000 strong. The media was quick to label him as "working class hero" and a "folk hero." However you see him, his actions have resonated with so many of us. It seems that at some point or another, we have all been just dying to tell the world fuck you, grab a couple of beers and go down the damn slide! Seriously, I feel like that once a week. Sometimes more. The difference is, thankfully most of us don't act on it. It's not that we don't have the balls, it's that we think about the consequences like careers, reputations and families. While I'm sure Mr. Slater had these same concerns, he simply reached a point where he just didn't give a shit.
The fact is that people have become ruder, nastier and selfish. Those traits seem to magnify in certain places. At the top of the list is on the airplane. if someone is a jerk on the ground, when you get them seated next to you on an airplane they become unbearable, right? I travel pretty frequently and I have come to loathe air travel not for fear of flying but the fear of the complete asshole I might have to sit next to. When I travel with my two year old son, things get really interesting. I cannot imagine what flight attendants have to go through. After I stopped laughing when I initially heard the news, I felt really bad for Steve Slater. I could totally see why he did what he did.
I wonder what he'll do now. It is highly unlikely he will get his job back. I mean, amidst the infamy how could he? He would always be That Guy. Everyone is waiting for the Oprah interview, the Ellen appearance or perhaps even the TV docudrama. There's just not enough meat in the story. He's just a regular guy from Queens who was having a really, really bad day. He didn't hurt anyone, he didn't shoot anyone, he wasn't a security threat. He just cursed out a lady over an airplane intercom and bailed in a dramatic fashion.
In this situation, I believe in second chances. And I believe we all deserve a free pass at one time during our lives. I hope Steve Slater gets his pass on this one and can move forward. I hope they drop the charges against him.
And for the record, I would totally hire him.