Victoria Has No Secrets — Bayard & Holmes Cyber Smack US Airways CEO

By Piper Bayard and Jay Holmes

US Airways CEO Doug Parker has earned the honor of having his otherwise pathetic existence being mentioned on our web page. Doug’s claim to infamy is based on the fact that he collects a $2.8 million paycheck as the CEO of US Airways.

US Airways recently got some attention in the media, and like most of the attention that it has received since its merger with America West in 2005, that recent attention was negative.

On June 15, a US Airways pilot had Deshon Marman, 20, arrested because he did not pull up his pants above his boxer shorts in a timely fashion. An employee at the boarding gate in San Francisco asked Marman to pull up the baggy pajamas he was wearing because he was exposing his boxer shorts to God and everybody, none of whom cared to see them. According to his mother, who was traveling with him, Deshon’s hands were full of his luggage so he was not able to comply immediately. Instead, he boarded the plane, then pulled up his pants and sat down. As a result of his “defiance” of an order from a US Airways employee, the plane was evacuated, and he was taken away in handcuffs with the whole Reality TV treatment. Click here for more.

We have no problem with US Airways not allowing people in sagging pajamas to fly on planes that other members of the general public are paying to share. We’re personally sick and tired of people running around in public in their pajamas and underwear, and we’re glad US Airways showed a little bit of respect for the rest of the passengers by booting this youngster from the plane. But the story doesn’t end there. . . .

We have since found out that on June 9, six days prior to that incident, a middle-aged man dressed only in scanty women’s lingerie and a see-through shrug was allowed to board a US Airways flight in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. Several passengers complained about the cross-dresser’s lack of clothing, but their complaints were ignored, and the panty-clad fellow was allowed to complete his flight.

Yes, really.

We see a double standard in this. If flying in scanty women’s underwear with no pants or skirt meets US Airways’ minimum requirements for attire, why was the young football player booted for having his boxer shorts exposed? While many people are offended by the overt display of boxer shorts, more people are offended by people walking around in any public place in nothing but their underwear, regardless of whether it is gender appropriate.

From our point of view, US Airways showed a lack of respect for its passengers when it allowed the Florida cross-dresser to board the plane without sufficient clothing. Had he chosen to fly in a black evening gown, an Ann Taylor ensemble, or any clothing similar to that worn by any other passenger, male or female, we would mind our own business concerning his personal dress preferences, and we would fly on the same plane without complaining.

We suspect what occurred here was political correctness run amok. While we would not want any cross-dresser to suffer any negative discrimination simply because they choose attire from the “other” side of the department store, we also don’t think that being a cross-dresser should earn anyone any special entitlements. Shame on US Airways for such spineless discrimination against it’s non-cross-dressing passengers.

The young man traveling in baggy pajamas was smart enough to contract an attorney. We don’t know how US Airways defense team is going to explain away the comparison to the cross-dresser. At this point, it looks like a jury will have the chance to sort that out.

Normally, we wouldn’t automatically blame the CEO for what could be the conduct of a few employees who are ignoring corporate policy, but US Airways has a long and distinguished record of bad customer service. Just so you don’t think we’re being too harsh with Douggie Parker, we’d like to point out a couple of the more heinous incidents at US Airways that we can recall.

  • In May, 2009, a blind man was dragged off a flight, jailed, and told he was faking his blindness. His crime? He was asking too many questions about why the flight was delayed. Click here.
  • US Airways booted a man with cerebral palsy from one of its planes in October, 2010, saying the man was too disabled to fly. Never mind that the man is a professional motivational speaker who has flown thousands of miles without his disability being an issue. Click here.
  • In January, 2011, they left an elderly stroke victim stranded in her wheelchair in the rain. Click here.

Since such an outstanding record of passenger abuse is evidence of a top-down problem, we are awarding US Airways CEO Doug Parker with a Cyber Smack. This prize includes weekly commutes as a normal passenger on his airline. To make his travel experience more entertaining (for the rest of us) Douggie will be required to negotiate the TSA checkpoint not once, but four times for each flight, and he will be required to fly in a wheelchair, with a mask covering his eyes. He will also be seated next to Rosie O’Donnell, who will be clothed in nothing except men’s underwear.

If Doug Parker proves to be more intrepid than we assume he is, and he actually survives a year of flying on US Airways without being killed or committing suicide, perhaps the experience will help him develop some compassion toward his passengers.

If you’ve suffered the misfortune of flying US Airways at some point in time, please share any special messages you may have for Douggie below in the comments.

Have you had any Close Encounters of the Troubling Kind with your airline carrier? Are there any airlines or airline employees you would like to give a Cyber Smack?

36 comments on “Victoria Has No Secrets — Bayard & Holmes Cyber Smack US Airways CEO

  1. I’m glad that I primarily fly SWA – US Airways deserves a huge smack. I would have personally preferred the sagging (even though I’m not a fan) over the cross-dresser. Dress how you want, in the privacy of your own home, but consider others when in public. Maybe I’m just old-fashioned….

    • Piper Bayard says:

      Then I’m old-fashioned, too. What happened to modesty? Or at least to enough low self-esteem to not want to share a view of your butt in underwear with the public at large? Isn’t this also known as “flashing” on some level? I think so.

      I’m glad to hear the positive comment on US Airways. Planning to use it for the first time this month. I was pleasantly surprised to call them with questions three different times, and each time I reached a human in America promptly. That human took it a step further and actually knew the answers to my questions. No complaints so far, knock wood.

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting. 🙂

  2. amber says:

    I rarely ever fly US Airways.

    I’m with Tiffany. As much as I don’t want to see some dude’s underbusiness, I really don’t want to see anyone on the plane in lingerie. Male or female.

    I love Cybersmack time.

    • Piper Bayard says:

      I’m with you. I’ll take the boxers over anyone in lingerie any day of the year, simply due to the sexual nature of the lingerie. I would prefer that people keep their sex to themselves. I have enough of my own. I have no need or want of theirs. My fifteen-year-old son would adamantly disagree with that preference, though, if the Victoria’s Secret models were the ones in the lingerie. 🙂 Thanks for stopping by.

  3. CMStewart says:

    Seeing people- female or male- walking around in underwear- boxers or thongs- would not bother me. Come to think of it, if I found myself in the middle of a expose-your-boxers or cross dressing convention, I’d be amused, and likely get a good story out of it. I do realize, however, that I’m in the minority, and the civilized people of this world have made rules for everybody so that we may all get along . . in theory . .

    • Piper Bayard says:

      I appreciate your perspective. I love hearing from people who disagree with me.

      I don’t think a convention would bother me like the airplane. I could’t care less about cross-dressers who are wearing clothing beyond lingerie, and, at a convention, I can move away from anyone who I think is ruining my experience. A plane, on the other hand, is a flying prison. I suppose my first thought as a mother, too, is that children fly alone on planes. I wouldn’t want my kids stuck anywhere near this guy. He is either unbalanced, or he is so belligerent about his sexuality he is deliberately daring people around him to lay down some boundaries, which is the act of a bully. Either way, I don’t want my kids or myself stuck next to him on a plane.

      Thanks so much for stopping by, CM. Good to see you.

  4. Lynn Kelley says:

    Definitely a case of political correctness run amok. It’s mind boggling the way they treated the blind passenger, the one with cerebral palsy, and the stroke victim in the wheelchair. Sounds like US Airways employees have been on quite a power trip.

  5. Catie Rhodes says:

    This has becoming a weird, weird world, hasn’t it? I no longer fly. I am terrified I’ll ignorantly commit some faux pas and end up in deep, deep poop.

    • Piper Bayard says:

      There’ve been a few times when I’ve been close. Once, TSA went bat crap crazy when my young nephew’s zipper on his shorts set off the metal detector. To this day I feel terrible that he got his first feel from a male TSA agent in public rather than in the more private, meaningful, traditional way in the back seat of a cheap car with a high school girlfriend. Thanks for stopping by. 🙂

    • J H says:

      And now that we had you added to the Department of Homeland Security “National Potential Flasher Watch List” you should be even more reticent about flying. I’m sorry about those three vehicles with the six people that have been parking near your house. Try to be patient with them. They have a large budget and they need to look busy now and then.

      Be proud that you helped to create some jobs for America.

  6. Wow, I while I agree that the whole sagging pants thing is absurd, I think of the two, I’s be very uncomfortable sitting on a flight next to some guy in women’s underwear. I don’t care about the cross dressing, I’d be equally uncomfortable with a woman sitting there too.

    it amazes me that anyone still flies on USAirways. I know they are cheap, and it shows. the last time I flew with them,I encountered a group of soldiers who were on a leave and had been sitting in the airport stranded for over 36 hours. (One of them told me this was his first visit home in nearly 2 years). US Airways deliberately overbooks EVERY flight, so they didn’t have room to put them on even though it was their fault the soldiers had missed their original flight. Every other airline (in the US at least) gives priority to uniformed servicemen and women to allow them to not have to spend what little time they get stuck in the airport.
    In this instance I volunteered to give up my seat for one of the stranded soldiers who was extremely thankful. I had to throw a fit at the counter with the agent who had the audacity to look me in the eye when she initially told me that the soldier was not next in line for standby and might not get on the flight. (I threatened to call the local media to have THEM come out and ask why these guys couldn’t get on the plane.) It only took me an extra 12 hours to get where I was going, and lets not even talk about the return trip. Never again.

    • Piper Bayard says:

      Wow! I’m speechless that they would treat our soldiers like that. That’s just messed up on so many levels. Thank you for helping out that fellow and insisting that US Airways do the same. Our men and women in uniform, as well as people traveling to funerals, should always be given priority as far as I’m concerned.

      And I’m with you. I don’t care if it’s Tyra Banks in the undies, I don’t want her next to me. Now, Jason Stathom might be another matter. . . . No. Sorry. Just a moment of weakness. . . . But seriously, people. Just put on some clothes. They are way cheaper than lingerie, anyway. Thanks for stopping by. 🙂

    • J H says:

      “I know they are cheap”. I don’t think they can even claim to be “cheap”. Paying $12 for a good steak would be “cheap”. Paying $12 for a moldy peanut butter sandwich would be exorbitant.

      I have not flown on that circus since prior to their merger with “America West” but whatever they are charging, unless they take Monopoly money or shiny beads as payment they are overcharging.

  7. educlaytion says:

    Boom on them. I made the mistake recently of flying US Air. I instantly regretted leaving Southwest and publicly apologized to my darling in the sky via Twitter. Southwest is so far above and beyond the competition it’s not even funny. But that picture of Rosie is.

  8. That old guy sure attempted to rock the blue…attempted. *shudder* That pic belongs with People Of Walmart.

    I get so angry at the treatment some people are forced to go through. It’s ridiculous.

    Hope you’re having a good writing week!


    • Piper Bayard says:

      Yes! It does belong with People of Walmart. Lol. I get very angry, too. If brains was leather, some folks wouldn’t be able to saddle a bug. Great week to you, too, thanks. 🙂

  9. Hello Piper –

    While I agree with the saggy pant underwear guy being asked to pull up his pants, I’m not so sure I agree with booting him off the airplane. I disagree with the wild weirdness of the cross dresser man (really?) being allowed to remain on the airplane dressed like that. Here’s a question for you and all your readers: do you think a gorgeous woman dressed in a pretty bikini would be allowed to ride on the plane without any mention from US Air employees? If not, what is really the difference between underwear, basketball shorts, and a bikini? I’m not advocating any of this. Honest, I am not. But really, couldn’t a bikini be worn as underwear…and couldn’t basketball shorts as well. I have played sports all my life and on rare occasion, I have worn nylon basketball shorts, or my college baseball sliding shorts, as underwear. See Piper. I told you I was going to create big trouble on your blog, lol. Not really…just saying ;). Thank you and have a wonderful Wednesday evening. 🙂

    • Piper Bayard says:

      I love big trouble, Charlie. 8)

      I understand your point about the bikini, but, frankly, as a parent who has often traveled with young children, I don’t find that to be appropriate travel attire, either. I would only ask the airline to have at least a minimal dress code which includes actually being dressed, and enforce it uniformly, so to speak.

      Pleasure to chat with you. Thanks so much for stopping by and contributing your thoughtful comment.

  10. The guy in the bikini, that’s for real?

    And they really kicked someone off for being too disabled? Wha??

    As for the Rosie picture, I’ve used one that one on my blog too. Heh heh.

    • Piper Bayard says:

      Yep. That’s for real.

      Cool. Do you have a link handy for that blog? I’d love to see it. Perhaps if others have used that picture, too, we can all link our blogs and send them together to Doug Parker as a glimpse of his future. 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

    • J H says:

      I am happy for Rosie. So many people accused her of being “worthless”. She has proven them wrong. Think of the laughs she has provided albeit unintentionally.

  11. Gene Lempp says:

    This type of activity happens all the time and not just in airlines. The simple fact, especially in the U.S. is that people are petty and rude. While an individual may be cut some slack, based on the personal bias of the viewer, companies should never take this lightly. You do harm to one customer it spreads like wildfire. You do good for one customer maybe two people will know or care.

    Truly hope U.S. Airways gets what it deserves but I’m more hopefully that a preponderance of cases of this nature are tried in order to set a precedent that improves the overall situation.

    • Piper Bayard says:

      You make some great points, Gene. I think it’s worse on a plane, though, because a plane is a flying prison, really. And I’m with you. I hope these incidents will result in some sensible, respectful rules. Thanks for stopping by.

  12. US Airways is the Denny’s of airlines. Nobody every starts out wanting to go there, but sometimes, it’s the only place open.

  13. Texanne says:

    Those kids with the boxers hanging out are just fashion victims, nothing more sinister than that. They deserve a discreet eyeroll–and maybe this guy could have used some help with his luggage. I’ve seen boys on dates, one had holding his date’s hand–the other hand holding up his pants. Really. It’s cute, in its way. Who among us doesn’t cringe at some aspect of our youthful style? I really wouldn’t have given him a second look.

    That guy in his girly skivvies. Not so good. That was the act of a bully–or maybe a rebel. Look, if we all showed up at the TSA shack wearing silkies, maybe the grope could be dispensed with. For sure, grandpa is not packing anything explosive in his low-rise U-trow. This should have been Story 1 of whatever day it happened. If he’s a bully, lock him up–he might enjoy it. If he’s just doing his version of Godiva’s ride–I gotta admire his, um, spunk.

    Thanks for bringing this to my attention, Piper. You rocked it again.

    Thank goodness I’d already seen a lot of the world before the airlines (nah, the government) went loony and gasoline was forced to $4/gallon. Home, sweet home. If only I were allowed to choose my own light bulbs.

  14. Texanne says:

    That’s one HAND holding his date’s hand. Oy.

  15. EllieAnn says:

    If girls can go anywhere with their boobs hanging out their shirts, I don’t see a problem with guys showing their boxers or even a little butt cleavage. hey, it’s only fair. But that guy wearing lingerie, now that’s just so indecent. So, so, so indecent.

  16. M.E. Anders says:

    Clever blog title. What a ridiculous double standard.

  17. J H says:

    Don’t risk hurting your hand. We value our readers and don’t want you or any of them on the disabled list. Use a yard stick on them.

  18. It’s just pants! They should’ve just let this incident go.

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