Well, that Elan Gale thing certainly split people down the middle, didn’t it?
(If you missed the whole experience, it’s here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/11/29/annoying-airplane-passenger_n_4360667.html)
Fair enough. Seems to be a battle between people who thought he was crass, didn’t like what he did on the plane or what he does for a living… didn’t like how he handled the situation and feel he should have just sucked it up and rode it out…
…versus those who have been in that position and tried to dismantle things and then when that person reveals themselves not to be unwilling to calm down… they were unwilling to accept it.
I read a few comments on my facebook page (Http://fb.com/TheMarmelPage), got a few messages in my in box and, figured it was worth the chat.
I don’t know where you stand. I see both sides. And as I said, I have been both of those people: The irritated person that was angry about how something affected everyone affected me and only me… and the person who has tried to get someone screaming or being rude to shut up.
I try - VERY HARD NOW - to be the person either quietly ignoring and rolling my eyes… or a sympathetic sidebar for the people who bear the brunt of what I consider unfair rudeness. Especially in public situations where everybody is going through the same situation.
I had a few of those this weekend alone.
So I was thinking about it being the busiest travel time of the year. That there were storms in the east. That the flight attendants were working on Thanksgiving. I had empathy there.
Which is why I found it interesting, and why I found it worth talking about.
Individuals are the only ones who can decide where the line is drawn and how they would draw it. What they would say and would or wouldn’t do.
Flying sucks. All it takes is one terrible person - be it a passenger or a flight attendant - to make it a miserable experience. Everybody is trapped in the same cattle-car.
Now that we’re all spectators on that flight, everybody gets to decide who the terrible person was.
Tomorrow, a gabillion people will be flying home. It’s one of the busiest travel days of the year. Maybe every one of those flights will be awesome and go off without a hitch, but I doubt it.
So this is a pretty good cautionary tale to not only try to check your anger, but be very sure about how you want to react to it.
And maybe the takeaway is… don’t be a d**k - whether you’re the instigator or the escalator - because you don’t know how it will end.
And with that, cheers.
- Steve Marmel