Monday 5 September 2011


This weekend a lead singer from a very successful rock band was kicked off an internal U.S Southwest flight for wearing pants (trousers, for you Brits) that were hanging too low. Apparently, the stewardess came up to him right before takeoff and told him - I'm postulating here, as I don't know her exact words - 'sir, you're pants are too low and if you don't hike them up you will have to leave the plane.' He then appropriately asked if the stewardess did not have better things to do before takeoff than worry about his pants. You know, like securing the door, or showing people how to use a seatbelt – seriously, who still does NOT know how to use as seat belt; If you raised your hand, you should not be flying – or making sure there is enough duty free items in the little cart that no one ever seems to purchase.

The lead singer eventually left the plane and ended up catching a later flight. As expected, when the higher-ups at the airline caught wind of this, they, in true PR fashion, said that the airline ‘profusely apologized to the customer and that he elected to take a later flight.’ Um, I think he elected to take the flight he was booted off of, but apparently his pants were too revealing for Miss Fussy Fashion in the Southwest uniform - the hideously offensive polyester uniform that never seems to fit, I might add, and you don't hear us complaining. 

Aside from being one of the most ridiculous stories I have ever heard, it also begs the question, what the heck is going on in our airways if stewardesses are placing their attention on a passenger’s pants and how they are being worn. What is she, his mother? Fine, if the man is not wearing any pants, that’s one thing; at least that would be grounds to tell the gentleman politely, that even in the friendly skies, people need to cover up their hardware, or ahem, software (sorry, I couldn't resist). Or let’s say, if the person wrote on his pants, ‘I'm going to bring down this flying tin can with a big fat bomb,’ then I would understand the intervention on her part.  But asking someone to leave the plane because his pants are resting too far below his boxers would mean half the passengers below the age of 25 would have to deplane. What’s next, asking the woman wearing her shorts too short to get off, or even better, ‘Mam, I find your panty lines offensive, I’m going to have to ask you to choose another airline.’

I’m not even sure what to call a situation like this: Sartorial profiling? Clothing racism? I tink those ‘working’ the plane so to speak – sorry I am laughing as my imagination is running wild at this terminology – should reevaluate what we need them to do up there. I’d say the primary tasks should be to keep their eyes peeled for suspicious individuals carrying weapons; ascertain who are the booze heads and make sure they don’t charge the cockpit in some drunken claustrophobic tirade, and of course make sure the damn pretzels aren’t stale. 

I don’t think this is too much to ask, is it?

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