Do you remember when airlines only employed flight attendants who were young and glamorous
A small waist, big boobs and bigger hair were the main attributes required to get the job. And that was just for the women. Your age could never be more than your waist size, no matter that your I.Q. was less than your chest size
But political correctness has changed all that. I am sure American Airlines employs young and/or attractive men and women, it is just that they never seem to be working our flight. We are flying from San Francisco to Buenos Aires where we will be staying for a few days before we board a ship destined for Antarctica and all points south (if there are any). As I settle into my very comfortable business class seat, the TV screen handily situated just a couple of feet in front of my eyes is showing the portrait of a young man, dressed in a flight attendants uniform, staring back at me. He is one of the interactive faces of American Airlines, his only purpose to direct me to the inflight entertainment.
He is notable mainly for his incredible hair. Is big hair still a requirement for the job? It looks as if an exceedingly well groomed cat has curled up and taken a nap on top of his head. Is all that inflammable hair product legal? How did he get it through security? How does he manage in one of the aircrafts’ toilets where? If you have to stand to pee, the ceiling height is something less than 5 feet.
Then there are his eyebrows. Eyebrows, I am told, are nature’s way of preventing sweat, water or debris from falling into our eyes, and these magnificent specimens are more than up to the task. His eyes will always stay remarkably clear of debris, with the exception of the two shiny stars of light that emanate from each one, courtesy no doubt of a little editing in photo shop.
We sit staring at each other, this overly polished young man and me, for several minutes. His smile never falters. Narrow lips stretched tight over well bleached teeth. I find it hard to smile back. Then curiosity gets the better of me. I look up on my trusty phone how many flight attendants American Airlines employs. The answer is 27,000. I presume that is give or take a few hundred, but either way it is a staggeringly large number.
I imagine a panel of experts being paid huge sums of money to sift through 27,000 photos looking for THE ONE . The one face, the perfect face to be one of THE FACES of American Airlines.
Was all that money well spent? Did they make the right choice? Wh0 can say? But he is beginning to irritate me. I try turning him off, but he will not go away.
His smile is becoming annoying. And the ears. They are so big. And that pointed chin. I am sure he is a perfectly nice young man ( a damning phrase if ever I heard one), but he is bringing out the worst in me.
I have to lighten the mood. There has to be a way to make better use of this young man. And then I have it
I sip a little champagne (OK, maybe it is more than a little, and maybe I am not sipping) and drift off to a comfortable sleep imagining how he would look with each different hairstyle.
It is an amusing way to pass the time and before you know it, I am in Buenos Aires.
Perhaps he is the perfect face for American Airlines.