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Hartselle Enquirer

Way to make a dramatic exit

I don’t like to fly.
Wait, that statement is not true. I should have said I hate to fly. That’s closer to the truth, but only because I don’t know a word that’s harsher than “hate.”
As such, I can understand the overwhelming internal desire that, once the flight is complete, to get off a plane as soon as possible. Off the plane equals safety.
Or, in the case of flight attendant Steven Slater, off the plane equals payback to “the man.”
Slater is a flight attendant with Jet Blue. Sometime during a flight to New York earlier this week, he and a passenger got in an argument after the flight attendant was allegedly hit in the head by an overhead bag the passenger was trying to retrieve.
Slater demanded an apology but apparently didn’t receive one. Upset by the slight, Slater waited until the plane landed then used the public-address system to express his thoughts about the passenger. Once that was done, Slater allegedly grabbed a beer then activated the plane’s emergency exit slide and made his escape.
Talk about knowing how to make an exit…
Passengers on the plane reported Slater was smiling as he made his way down the slide.
Authorities weren’t smiling though. Unimpressed with his “take this job and shove it” action, he was arrested a day after the incident and faces charges of criminal mischief, reckless endangerment and trespassing.
The matter is also being investigated by Jet Blue, the Federal Aviation Administration and Port Authority police. The National Transportation Safety Board chimed in, too, blaming the incident on “a little too much cabin pressure,” something that seems like a pretty funny statement for a governmental agency to make.
Who knows what brought about Slater’s actions but I bet a lot of people can identify with him.
If you’ve ever been stuck on a plane as it sits on a runway, the idea of grabbing a cold drink and making a dramatic exit sounds like a good one. Or, if you’re like me, and just want to get off the plane as soon as possible,  jumping without the blow-up slide is a good alternative to one more minute in the soaring silver bullet.
Whatever the reason, I hope Slater overcomes his current struggles. But know this, we’re with you bud, we’re with you.

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