This is exactly why you should read the airplane safety manual. If you get in a fight with one of your row-mates, or if the powers that be are insisting on keeping you on the tarmac so long you’re actually going insane, or if you forgot something really, really important, you, too, can activate the emergency exit chute and slide off a plane. Just like Steven Slater, a JetBlue flight attendant, who pulled this handy trick this afternoon after a dispute with a passenger after landing at the gate at JFK from Pittsburgh, reports City Room.
As an escape technique, this is both brilliantly stupid, and brilliantly brilliant. Imagine the joy Slater must have felt, the wind rushing through his hair, on his quick trip down the slide, away from whatever troubles faced him on the plane. For that one moment before he landed on his butt and ran to his car, perhaps he felt truly free again. Leavin’ it all behind.
It’s worth saying: Don’t try this in the air. In fact, don’t try it at all, because you’ll be arrested. Just like Slater was after driving home to Belle Harbor, Queens. He faces possible charges of criminal mischief and trespassing. Grounded!
Multiple passengers witnessed the fight, in which a passenger apparently refused Slater’s instructions to remain seated (is this really so hard, people?) and instead tried to retrieve his belongings from the overhead compartment; said luggage than contrived to hit Slater in the head, demonstrating why you’re supposed to be patient and wait. Instead of apologizing the passenger cursed at Slater, and the incensed flight attendant got on the PA to curse everyone, and then launched himself off the plane.
No word on whether Slater is tendering his resignation, but this is a pretty impressive way to quit while really showcasing your skills, as far as those things go. Of note: Slater is (was?) on the airline’s in-flight values committee.
Update: Slater snagged two beers on his way out. In a word: Wow.