Monday, August 23, 2010

Jet Blue

So, let’s talk about this Steven Slater. If you don’t recognize his name, he’s the Jet Blue guy who went nuts, deployed the emergency exit slide, grabbed two beers, and got the hell off the plane AFTER he said the F word to a customer and basically quit via PA system on the plane.

Some are touting him as a hero, and some are saying those people who are touting him as a hero are being ridiculous. I can bet you the people who don’t think he’s a hero have never, not one single time, worked in a customer service industry. Because you know what? If you’ve ever dealt with customers on a regular basis, you’ve wanted to tell someone to F off about five hundred times. Hell, it’s likely you’ve wanted to punch someone in the face. Steven Slater probably took the high road by not punching the guy in the face.

But I think the point is missed. I heard some guy on the news talking. He was telling about how, now, people are out in the world deciding how they are going to quit their job. They are planning their own exit. He referred to a girl who said that the next rude customer she encountered was going to get a roach on top of their hamburger (where in the hell can you just come up with a roach?) and then she was going to walk out. This guy says that what Slater did was encourage people to act like fools and disrespect customers.

But what about the customers who disrespect workers? I’ve worked in customer service all my life, and I have been treated horribly by people who are total idiots. They are rude just to be rude. They think because I work in the customer service industry, I’m a loser—I couldn’t get a better job, so I started working in retail. And therefore, they should treat me like I’m a total imbecile. I’ve even had people throw shit at me. Yes, it has happened.

And guess what? Most of the stuff people want to yell and cuss at me about? It’s their own fault—they’ve overdrawn their bank account going to the casino or their now deceased parents didn’t plan their estate properly and their kids can’t get money out of their account. Or it’s something I can’t control anyway, so regardless of how much they complain, I can’t do anything about it.

In this case, someone didn’t follow the rules. And they got called out. Sounds like they deserved it to me. It makes me mad that everyone questions the results, but nobody questions the actions. I think people should recognize the ridiculous attitudes people have toward people who work in customer service.

Kudos to Steven Slater for not taking it anymore! Just because you serve the public doesn’t mean you should lay down and take it up the ass every single day.

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