Monday, September 7, 2009

Plane Insanity

I bought a book last week entitled "Plane Insanity: A Flight Attendant's tale about sex, rage and queasiness at 30000 ft". Now, before I say anything about it, let me just tell you first how I got this book. I've been buying stuff from ebay since last April. Since then, I have searched for items that have anything to do with being a Flight Attendant. From Lanyards to Shirts, Collectibles to Tags, and Books. I ordered this book way back in June and I have been waiting impatiently for it to arrive but no luck. After 3 months and 1 follow up (they lost my book in the mail the first time, and no it hasn't arrived yet) I saw a book sitting just in-front of my right foot at Book Sale. I was looking for other Rough Guide titles and when I looked down, there it was. It was just a fraction of the cost of the one I bought from ebay (75php against 650php). I felt so excited that I called my cousin out loud (you guessed it. Everyone at the store was staring at me). I quickly bought the book and went home. It was already late when we got home. I quickly took it out of its plastic covering and opened the book with a smirk on my face. I flipped the pages just to see some of its contents, and had the urge to read the book but it felt like it wasn't the right time to read. It's all about timing right? I decided to bring it with me to school so I could read a few chapters during my vacant hours.

I started reading the book from the very first page (reviews). The book tackles about the life of a Flight Attendant behind glitter and glamour. From crying infants to adventurous adults, Elliot Hester had faced them in 16 years of flying. He started as a baggage handler working underneath the plane's belly with the temperature dropping below zero before stepping up and worked as a Flight Attendant.

Here's some interesting situation he/ his coworkers had in their career.

  • While a female flight attendant was serving food from the meal cart, a female passenger thrust a small bundle of trash toward her. "Take this", the passenger demanded. Realizing that the trash was actually a used baby diaper, the attendant instructed the passenger to take it to the lavatory herself and dispose of it. "No", the passenger replied. "You take it!" The attendant explained that she couldn't dispose of the dirty diaper because she was serving food-- handling the diaper would be unsanitary. But that wasn't good enough answer for the passenger. Angered by her refusal, the passenger hurled the diaper at the flight attendant. It struck her square in the head, depositing chunks of baby dung that clung like peanut butter to her hair. Thw two women ended up wrestling on the floor. They had to be separated by passengers.
  • When bad weather closed the Dallas/Fort Worth airport for several hours, departing planes were stuck on the ground for the duration. One frustrated passenger, a young woman, walked up to a female flight attendant and said, "I'm sorry, but I have to do this". The passenger then punched the flight attendant in the face, breaking her nose in the process.
  • A flight attendant returning to work after a double-mastectomy and a struggle with multiple sclerosis had a run-in with a disgruntled passenger. One of the last to board the plane, the passenger became enraged when there was no room in the overhead bin above his seat. He snatched the bags from the compartment, threw them to the floor and put his own bag in the space he had created. After hearing angry cries from passengers, the flight attendant appeared from the galley to see what the fuss was all about. When the passengers explained what happened, she turned to the offending passenger. "Sir, You can't do that," she said. The passenger stood up, cocked his arm and broke her jaw with one punch.

Definitely defies the fact that flight attendants aren't just there to serve peanuts...

This book by Elliot Hester has 3 titles. The one I have is Plane Insanity, the 2nd name is Air Confidential, and I forgot the last title but it’s basically all the same. These books can be purchased on

---back to reading---

Elliott Hester (Planning his trip for his next book: The Continental Drifter)

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