Coffee, Tea, or Me?

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Well, this headline got my attention:


That pretty much tells you what you need to know, but here’s a bit more detail:


Now, listen, I’ve got a lot of gripes about the way corporate America conducts itself. I think U.S. capitalism has, in many ways, become utterly diseased and will be the cause of its own ruination.

However, in spite of my disdain for our shareholder-driven society, I must protest, as I always have, any effort to get a business to align itself with demands such as the ones cited above, be they from either litigation or government edict.

United Airlines, 1970s

I am no fan of United Airlines, but if a paying customer – – in this case, I suppose giant sports corporations that want to charter jets and fly players around – – ask for a certain type of crew, that’s totally their choice.

Do they want a super-handsome pilot? Great! Do they like all their cabin crew to be slightly-overweight male stewards? You got it! Instead, do they want the entire staff to look like cocktail waitresses from the 1960s? Hey, if the employees are up for it, great, we’ve got paying customers.

Southwest Airlines, 1970s (legs seems to be a theme here)

It doesn’t take a lot of imagination to believe that NFL Players would prefer to have their in-flight dining provided by, shall we say, stewardesses of a bygone era. Do some folks think that makes the NFL to be immature pigs? Great: then tell the world they are immature pigs. Absolutely. Those boys should really grow up. But I don’t think that United should be forced to use any kind of personnel just because someone else tells them they have to.

Another leg parade from Southwest, at the time called PSA

Here, let’s get away from United for a second. Why, for example, does Chippendale’s not hire me as a dancer? I’m a healthy male perfectly willing to do the job (well, no, I’m not willing, but let’s just go with it for now). Why shouldn’t Chippendale’s be required to hire a middle-aged, somewhat overweight, not-exactly-Adonis kind of fella to entertain their female customers? What’s all this bias toward 25 year old men with six-pack abs. I call them out for discrimination!

Still unconvinced? Here, allow me to slip off my shirt to end the conversation.

As long as we’re trying to ascertain why I’m being shut out of gainful employment………..

  • Why can’t I play for the NFL?
  • Why can’t I star on a Broadway musical?
  • Why am I not featured on the Food Network as a master chef?

I’ll tell you why. Because I’m not athletic, because my singing is great for my shower but not for the stage, and because my ability to roast a chicken or make a fruit crisp does not qualify me for culinary notoriety. That’s why.

So, even though United must be one of my least-favorite airlines in existence, I still say: leave ’em alone! The truth is that what most people want from an airline, men and women alike, is to get from Point A to Point B safely and comfortably. If the men of America were really so obsessed with seeing pretty women delivering their drinks, then Hooters Air would have been a raging success and not a bankrupt failure in just three years’ time.

My personal favorite: Alaska Airlines, 1970s.