Want your 15 minutes of fame? Well, all you have to do is have a public outburst worthy of news coverage, and BAM! nearly 40,000 Facebookers will flock to your digital aid. That’s what happened to Steven Slater, a JetBlue flight attendant who dramatically quit his job the other day after a confrontation with an unruly passenger.
If you’re not yet aware of the legend of Steven Slater, let me break it down for you: As a JetBlue flight from Pittsburgh arrived at New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport the other day, a passenger got out of her seat to retrieve her baggage from the overhead compartment, after which all hell broke loose.
Slater describes the ensuing incident thusly in a written statement to the Queens County District Attorney’s Office, according to ABC News: “I lost patience after a female passenger had an argument with another passenger and then opened the bin door hitting me on the head without apologizing, I got on the microphone and said, ‘To those of you [who] have shown dignity and respect these last twenty years, thanks for a great ride.’ I accessed the porthole pulled the door handle inflating the slide, took my baggage and slid down the slide and left.”
Slater apparently left the fact that he cursed out the entire plane and grabbed two beers before jetting, according to eyewitness accounts.
Slater is currently being held in jail, where he will remain until someone posts the $2,500 bail. Despite this dire situation, Slater has racked up his share of online support: Facebook Pages Steven Slater, I hate the motherf*cker that called Steven Slater a motherf*cker and Steven Slater Legal Defense Fund, to name a few.
Steven Slater has the most fans — more than 37,000 — and founder Kyle Terry claims to be raising funds for Slater to help cover his legal costs, according to the New York Daily News. Maybe Terry can help him out with that bail.
Slater isn’t the first persona of dubious merit to be awarded Facebook celebrity — remember Colton Harris Moore, who was on the run from the law for stealing small airplanes and crash landing them? Yup — the Bonnie & Clyde-esque folk hero is much-beloved among the social media set.
What do you think of the phenomenon of making heroes out of folks like Slater? Let us know in the comments.
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