An official of the federal government arrived to do a check ride of our pilots which is quite routine and not unusual at all. Typically they aren't even really "working" but, many times, just need a ride back home or their vacation destination so they use the opportunity as an excuse to get in a check ride for the pilots. That's our government at its finest. So, I'm the First Class flight attendant, standing at the forward door, saying HI and all of that. And I'm just overhearing the conversation between the pilots and the FAA dude. "Do you live in L.A.?," the pilot asks. "No, anybody who wants to be anyone doesn't live in L.A.....I live in Orange County," the FAA guy says. I think I spit up a little. Orange County is rumored to be the most Republican county in the U.S. And then Mr. FAA goes on about having been "Up here in Oregon where all of the tree huggers are....." Oh boy. What a giant intelligence base we have going here, I'm thinking. But, unknown to me, the crowning glory of them all is about to happen ----
Our "C" flight attendant (works in the galley at the back of the aircraft) comes all of the way forward to introduce herself to the pilots. She's been at the job a little longer than I have an is a beautiful Vietnamese woman. She goes into the flight deck and I can overhear them doing their required preflight checklist. And it is routine that we do not interrupt this checklist...if they are in the middle of it, we wait for them to finish. Instead of wait, however, she just turned around and headed toward the back of the aircraft again. And then I hear the pilot say, "I wonder why she didn't wait for us to finish....." And, then, it happened.....The FAA dude opens his mouth and inserts his foot about as far as he could....He responds to the pilots by saying:
Pardon me? Excuse me? An Oriental thing?? What did I just hear from this arrogant man? And I lost all self control. I looked at him and asked what he had just said. I let him have it with both guns. I told him that I really had no control over what he did on his own time and at his own workplace....but how dare he come into our workplace and make inappropriate ethnic slurs about one of my coworkers. And I asked him if he knew that it was the year 2009....and that maybe he'd like to bring himself into the 21st century. I asked him if he'd make the same comment if she had been standing right there in front of him. He said he would! Ugh. This guy was a total dweeb. A world-class asshole. I told him I wanted his supervisor's name and phone number....which I now have. And then, it was time to go. I shut him up there with the pilots. I was so mad I could have spit.
The flight progressed in spite of the fact that he now didn't want the nice hot breakfast I was prepared to serve him. "No, thank you," he tells me all of a sudden.
It may be that I overreacted. My mouth gets going sometimes and I just can't quit it. But I just have no tolerance for discrimination or those who choose to take advantage of anyone because of which country they are from, the color of their skin, the church they go to, who they have chosen to sleep with, or a full list of other things. You can say a lot of things to me and I'll just think you're silly. But start in with the off-the-cuff grade school crap and you'll hear from me. I will always try to stand up for those who need to be stood up for.
By the way, I called my supervisor this afternoon and confessed my severe case of diarrhea mouth. She understands completely, believe me.