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Sunday, April 12, 2015

An Unfortunate Event

Jet Blue is my ABSOLUTE fav airline. You know this, right? I've blogged about my mad love for Jet Blue before. I’d fly them everywhere if only they had routes to Istanbul, Reykjavik, Barcelona, Edinburgh and Alpha Centauri (!!!). The customer service has always been MOLTO stellar.

With one exception.

Jen and I had just taken our seats on the flight back from our recent visit with Vati (a great time, by the way!). The flight attendant leans over Jen and starts talking at me. I raised my hand in the International Whoa There Buddy sign and tell him I’m deaf so he'd need to speak slowly so that I can, possibly, read his lips. He actually cut me off, started talking over and at me again and NO he did not slow his rate of speech. I’d no clue what was going on. I asked Jen to jump in and ‘terp for me. Even she was unsure of what he was on about. When she got him to start again at the theoretical beginning he said:
“Yeah, she can move a couple seats back. There’s a seat open a couple rows back...”
Seriously—this was his opening sentence., why do I have to move?

Because I’m in an exit row and deafies can’t be in exit rows. No, he did not start his communication about this move with an opening explanatory sentence such as:
"Hi, small problem—this is an exit row and, in case of emergency, we need to have folks sitting here who can hear the crew's evacuation directions." He could then go on to give us the solution AND help us move our bags. Simple n'cest pas?

In any case, after he finally explained, I understood why I needed to move BUT:
A) I paid extra dough for the added leg-room seats and I most def didn’t want to sit in a regular not-enough-leg-room seat.
B) We were at mid plane already. Farther back in the air ship would trigger my prodigious claustrophobia. No can do. Uh uh.
He then tells us that Jen can stay in her seat since she’s not deaf OR she can move to another seat in the plane but there aren't two together. Hold on right there mon ami. You mean to say that:
  1. You’re breaking up the act? Nae good since I need her to ‘terp for me ESPECIALLY if there’s an emergency where this exit row becomes star of screen and crash.
  2. Did I mention? I paid more moolah for these seats—we gotta move FINE but I want the extra leg-room seats that I paid for.
From there he goes on to tell Jen that we could still sit together but, he gestures to the seats behind us, inquiries would need to be made of folks sitting around to see who’d be willing to move. ¿Que? Motherfucking ¿QUE? Dude didn’t say that HE, tout de suite, would make inquiries—no, he’d just heavily implied that Jen should go ‘round asking fellow customers if they could switch with us.

Pal, is that not YOUR job?

Once Jen ‘terped everything for me, I made very clear that moving was cool, I understood, BUT....see above. I dunno if I got loud (deaf here, ‘member? Jen says no though) but at that moment, one of his fellow attendants stepped in and saved his skinny, not too bright, ass. Turns out there WERE two seats available—together, at the front of the plane AND they were extra leg-roomy.

Done and we’re happy, no thanks to this customer service impaired attendant who'd just made a problem where none needed to be. 

Would it have been SO much of a hardship for him to have had solutions BEFORE he started talking at me, telling me I had to move, couldn’t sit with my friend/‘terp and going on to imply that SHE had to find people to move for us? This isn't Greyhound, old stick.
Also, blind much? How'd he miss those two seats together at the front of the plane?

I didn’t get his name or the name of the woman who saved the day but, on deplaning, I made sure to tell the folks at the desk about who'd been a good doobie and who'd rocked the incompetent putz act.

I’ll DEF fly Jet Blue again. Of course I will—they’ve always been astounding. This was a fluke—one I hope to never run into again.

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