Once upon a time, a self-proclaimed Archaeology-Lifer got a job as a flight attendant. No one knows quite how it happened. Here's what happened next...

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

The Flight Attendant's ABCs - E (echo) is For...

  •  Emergency Exit Row - Always a matter of some contention.  The EE rows are generally reserved for what FAs call “ABPs”, or “Able Bodied Passengers”.  We don’t mean it to be discriminatory.  All the bodies and organizations that organize aviation regulations around the world enforce the rule that the passengers who sit in EE rows must be able to open the exit and not hinder evacuation in the event of an emergency.  So no, it's not particularly reasonable for you to ask for the extra room for your kids to play around in.  And if you're hobbling around on a broken leg with crutches, you probably aren't going to be the swiftest at getting the emergency exit open now, are you?  It’s not the FA’s fault you can’t sit there, so don’t hate.  It’s a matter of safety, and that's really,  really not a cop out.
  • Engine - What’s the difference between a jet engine and a flight attendant?  The engine stops whining at the gate.
  • Entertainment - In flight entertainment - fantastic on Air Canada and other such large carriers.  Not so good on other airlines.  Non-existent on charter companies, unless you count listening to the Flight Attendants gossiping in the galley.  But then, you pay peanuts for a week-long, all-inclusive Caribbean Vacation…do you really expect to be flown down on a shiny, brand new, fully tricked out A380 instead of a B737 that’s older than you are?  Bring an iPod, or even one of those old-fashioned book things. 
  • Engineer -  Officially, the engineer is “an enlisted man or NCO who monitors and maintains aircraft operation in-flight and otherwise aids the air crew.” (Source)  Unofficially the engineer is either the best person in the world who will fix your mutinous coffee maker four times during the flight, or he’s a jerk who sits in the back row reading/listening to music/playing on his nintendo and laughs at you when you have a flood in the galley, yet still expects to be fed, watered, and otherwise treated like a passenger.