A Friend of Unfair Park intimately familiar with the doings at Southwest Airlines says, yeah, today was hell at the Love Field-based airline, but Monday's sure to be worse as SWA attempts to overcome the PR nightmare caused when director Kevin Smith got kicked off an Oakland-to-Burbank flight yesterday. The reason for his adios? No, not Jersey Girl. Turns out, Silent Bob's a big boy -- "safety risk" fat, apparently.
For those who don't have the patience to scroll through the entirety of the Clerks writer-director's Twitter account, which continues to fan the flames, Gawker has the blow-by-blow recap, which built from a tweeted spark ("I know I'm fat, but was Captain Leysath really justified in throwing me off a flight for which I was already seated?") to full-on inferno:
"So, @SouthwestAir, go fuck yourself. I broke no regulation, offered no "safety risk" (what, was I gonna roll on a fellow passenger?). I was..wrongly ejected from the flight (even Suzanne eventually agreed). And fuck your apologetic $100 voucher, @SouthwestAir. Thank God I don't..embarrass easily (bless you, JERSEY GIRL training). But I don't sulk off either: so everyday, some new fuck-you Tweets for @SouthwestAir."
A few hours ago, Southwest "heartfelt" apologized to Smith on Nuts About Southwest, its official blog, in a posting headlined "Not So Silent Bob." As apologies go, it's a kick in the nuts, all right, especially the last paragraph explaining that, sorry, but he needs two seats and there was but one available on his flight:
You've read about these situations before. Southwest instituted our Customer of Size policy more than 25 years ago. The policy requires passengers that can not fit safely and comfortably in one seat to purchase an additional seat while traveling. This policy is not unique to Southwest Airlines and it is not a revenue generator. Most, if not all, carriers have similar policies, but unique to Southwest is the refunding of the second seat purchased (if the flight does not oversell) which is greater than any revenue made (full policy can be found here). The spirit of this policy is based solely on Customer comfort and Safety. As a Company committed to serving our Customers in Safety and comfort, we feel the definitive boundary between seats is the armrest. If a Customer cannot comfortably lower the armrest and infringes on a portion of another seat, a Customer seated adjacent would be very uncomfortable and a timely exit from the aircraft in the event of an emergency might be compromised if we allow a cramped, restricted seating arrangement.
Smith's SModcast about the situation is just went live. The title of this episode: "Go Fuck Yourself, Southwest Airlines." Earlier today he tweeted a sneak preview: "Wait 'til you hear SMod story about the girl sitting next to me who was pulled aside & chastised for not buying an additional seat." In it, Smith and his missus discuss his "portly misadventures" on "the Greyhound of the sky." Long story short: "There's no customer service whatsoever left ... it's tough to find somebody who gives a fuck." Cop Out had better be worth this.