Apology for earlier thread on overweight passenger..

Old Jul 9, 04, 3:17 pm
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Smile Apology for earlier thread on overweight passenger..


I'm so sorry I didn't edit my earlier thread on the overweight pax who made my husband's flight miserable. I'm glad the thread is closed now and I'm writing this to set the record straight. I really didn't mean to call names.. I was emotional when I posted this and that's not good as you all know. The title of the thread was also poorly chosen. There was no racial comments intended. The extremely overweight passenger who took up all of his seat and almost half of my husbands (seats a and b on the md80) was white as was my husband. But we are not racists of any kind and like people of all ethnicities.

I think my husband was angry because:

a) he was extremely uncomfortable for the 3 hour and 5 min flight
a) the flight was full ( no empty seats that he could see to switch to )
b) after the flight ended he realized that the man had a wife and daughter that the large man could have switched with so as not to crush a stranger (my husband). Although the rest of the family was also large, it wouldn't have been as bad as the very very large man. It would be more considerate of this large man and that's where a lot of the anger came from).
c) American Airlines doesn't seem to address this problem that must happen on nearly every flight. They could have denied boarding to him when he didn't present 2 boarding passes.
d) the airlines could also have special seats for those few people who clearly do not fit into the average seat. I'm sure the overweight passenger would appreciate that too.

That's about it. I'm sorry to anyone who I offended. Most folks are overweight. This is not about them. It's about someone whose presence in an airline seat clearly ruins the ride for the person next to them. It's about their responsibilty to buy 2 seats so that it won't ruin someone else's ride.

As much as we like taking trips, airline flights are really not comfortable for anyone (except maybe in F which I've only flown once)... so a situation like this makes it 10 times worse. My husband should definitely have addressed the situation with an FA (in private) and will in the future should it happen again.

Enough Said. I love Flyertalk and I appreciate all the comments (good and bad). Please accept my apologies!

T Q is offline  
Old Jul 9, 04, 3:35 pm
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Having to be politically correct all the time is no fun is it?
Freedom of expression!
kpdunphy is offline  
Old Jul 9, 04, 3:41 pm
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Maybe they should buy 2 seats???? As Johnny Cochran once put it "If the butt don't fit, you must double remit"
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Old Jul 9, 04, 3:45 pm
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Thumbs up

Originally Posted by T Q
...That's about it. I'm sorry to anyone who I offended...Enough Said. I love Flyertalk and I appreciate all the comments (good and bad). Please accept my apologies!
Very, very classy, IMHO. ^^ It's never easy to apologize (I'm not especially good at it myself) and your "crime" was relatively minor, IMHO-- but apologizing to those who might have been offended is a class thing to do.
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Old Jul 9, 04, 3:49 pm
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No worries, I'm sure... sometimes we can use words that can be hurtful to others without thinking about it. Any of us, all of us, given the right circumstances. And you brought up an interesting issue:

AA needs, IMO, to take a look at this issue for reasons of safety first and foremost, and of passenger comfort (and conflict possibilities) as well.

I'm also sure nobody wants to do anything about this - safety on one hand, allegations of discrimination on the other hand. In the flight arena, too often that means a vacuum until something happens, unfortunately.

WN has taken the bull by the horns and requires, as you saw on the other thread, that passengers who exceed certain widths, as measured by the ability to fill a seat safely, are required to purchase two tickets.

My take is this is not personal, nor IMO would it be discriminatory, as long as it is based on a bona fide and demonstrable safety reason. No airline has been successfully sued for requiring such a passenger to use a safety belt extension, or for denying an exit row seat to anyone who was not capable of operating the exit hatch (a number of reasons are listed on a/c safety cards,) though I am sure there is some fast-shuffling person out there who might claim it was be humiliating.

And you are right - the FA is a good place to take this, since s/he is repsonsible for passenger cabin safety, above and over any other duty.

Originally Posted by T Q

I'm so sorry I didn't edit my earlier thread on the overweight pax who made my husband's flight miserable. I'm glad the thread is closed now and I'm writing this to set the record straight. I really didn't mean to call names.. I was emotional when I posted this and that's not good as you all know. The title of the thread was also poorly chosen. <snip>
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Old Jul 9, 04, 4:19 pm
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Do you dislike WN? NAAFA also does!

Much has been discussed of WN/SW's two-seat policy for those who are overweight. There has been some backlash. The National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance has been fighting them since they announced the policy. AA is also mentioned in this story from their convention:

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Old Jul 9, 04, 5:45 pm
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Don't worry TQ, there's nothing to apologize about. All you're doing is expressing the same things the ones offended would think had they been in the same awful situation. I'd like to see the people complaining about your post to endure what you're husband did. Would they just sit there and smile, with only nice thoughts in their heads? Hardly. It's refreshing to read what's really on one's mind, rather than a watered-down, super-sensitive version of events.
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Old Jul 9, 04, 7:20 pm
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Originally Posted by kpdunphy
Having to be politically correct all the time is no fun is it?
Freedom of expression!

^ ^ ^ ^ ^
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Old Jul 9, 04, 8:01 pm
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Red face

Thank you for acknowledging the gravity of your remarks.

I think a great burden has been lifted (from your conscience, of course).
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Old Jul 10, 04, 2:26 am
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Thumbs up Big of you

no pun intended

It takes a strong person to make an apology like the one you did.
Though I share many of your views, I agree that some of the language you used in the original post was probably better suited for a "domestic debriefing" rather than a public forum.

I know I tend to use more colorful language when frustrated with myself (or someone close to me) for not having done or said everything I should have (hindsight's 20/20).

Again, brava! ^
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Old Jul 10, 04, 6:20 am
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Well done you!

The problem with writing electronically is that once it is gone - it is less easy to recover. Equally people write email and write on these sort of Boards saying things that they would never dare say to the face of the person concerned Had you written that, saved it, and come back in the morning you would probably never have posted it. It is called the grace of second thought.
You do not sound to me like someone who would deliberately set out to offend or insult anyone. I note that it is not the theme but your choice of words that have caused the frisson.

Still, I believe in free speech, and you were not insulting or speaking to or about (as far as we know) anyone here so you were expressing your opinion. If others took offense, that is for them to deal with. On this side of the Atlantic, you'd probably have got away with it, on your side it was not a case of would the thread be closed, but how soon would it be closed.

I think that you are perfectly entitled to your opinions, but I think that your apology is more than handsome, and a lot more than many of us might do.

Best Regards
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Old Jul 10, 04, 7:16 am
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I read the original thread.

I will not tolerate a fat person who intrudes upon my space on an airplane or elsewhere. Society should not be required to make special accommodation for persons whose girth is 90%+ of the time the result of irresponsible habits and a lack of discipline.

Sorry about your husband's experience; you've gotten some good advice (and some overzealous moderating) in your posts.
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Old Jul 10, 04, 7:35 am
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Originally Posted by T Q

I'm sorry to anyone who I offended.
Personally, I don't think your apology was necessary. The apology should come from the airlines who have shrunk their seats down to the size of a ten year old! MRTC, when available, only goes forward, not side to side. The guy probably should have sprung for a FC seat for his own comfort, or if one was available, the airline should have comped him - would have gone a long way in how he spoke of the carrier in the future.

As someone who used to carry extra poundage, I wasn't offended at all. Oftentimes, when you shoot from the hip, it's your best effort. I understood your frustration, and I've had my share of oversized folks wanting to park half a butt-cheek in my lap on board, but I never judge their weight, I judge the size of the seats that a steadily growing america can't fit into comfortably.

Never apologize for speaking your mind, it's a right that the Patriot Act has put in dire jeopardy. I laud you for having the weedles to speak up in the first place.

Next time - try raising a fuss with the carrier, and try asking if they can give the person a more comfortable seating arrangement. Southwest makes them pay for an extra seat - for their own comfort and safety. The upside is, if the flight has even ONE empty seat, the FAs will notify the passenger who was forced to pay for two so they can apply for, and receive a full refund for the second seat. That's class, and safety-minded all at the same time.

I will tell you though that based on personal experience, I know there are a myriad of reasons that people can be carrying extra weight, so I refuse to ever judge any heavy person based on appearance. Heavy folks need to travel just as much as everyone else, so until airlines figure out a way to charge by the pound without too much offense, we'll have to suck up and live with the ever shrinking seat.

Happy travels darlin'!

You've got class! I'd be honored to sit next to you on any flight! How's your cribbage game?
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Old Jul 10, 04, 10:15 am
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Heck, I ain't exactly a twig, but it grrrrs.. me when massive folks squeeze into the berth next to me and their blubber oozes into the little space that I have left. Not a pleasent situation, and you shouldnt have to apologize.

I flew a J class seat recently transcon and the dude sitting next to me not only wreaked like stale gym shorts, but he insisted on taking up the ENTIRE bizclass armrest. He was basically a selfish jerk, and I just started to jamb my arm into his, as he refused to move his arm with subtle hints.

He was a somewhat large fella, and he seemed to feel that cuz he was in J, he could just take up as much room as he wanted. NOT

What frustrated your husband is real, and all the whining and political correctness in the world won't make the source of these issues disappear.

Can't we all just get along
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Old Jul 10, 04, 6:31 pm
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Thumbs down Sounds like the AIRPLANE on A & E

Looks like your story should be on the A & E cable channel along with Southwest Air.
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