Horror stories from a former flight attendant - New York News

Horror stories from a former flight attendant

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PHOENIX -

What's the grossest thing you've ever done -- or maybe seen someone else doing on an airplane? We're telling you some of the oddest things you can imagine, from one person who has been there before and seen it all.

The powder blue glory days of air travel and the glamorous job of stewardess have flown the coop in the 2000s. It has given way to a totally different vibe

The more practical uniforms, more fitting for some of the turbulence today's flight attendants experience --not from outside the plane -- but from passengers inside.

This passenger says she's certainly noticed a change.

"I know when I was growing up it was an elite thing to do to fly, but rates have come down, now people dress like slobs when they get on and they don't have respect for others," says passenger Julie Schultz.

Lack of respect is the least of the problems onboard, says former flight attendant Greg Leopard.

"Nothing surprises me."

This recent article lists the top 10 grossest things flight attendants have seen passengers doing. The list includes a new mom who fully exposed both breasts while pumping milk in her seat, and one they call ‘Blankets and Boogers.' A flight attendant stunned when a passenger handed her a blanket he had apparently used rather liberally as a Kleenex.

Not to mention the horrible surprises those nifty airline pockets hold. Leopard calls the seat pocket Pandora's Box.

"You never know what you're going to find in there," says Leopard. "And sometimes that can be dirty diapers, food; maybe somebody used the airsick bag and forgot to put it in the trash."

The gross things people do with their feet in flight makes the list -- like clipping toenails, or using pedi-eggs on their feet, and of course using the food service tray as a foot rest.

Also on the list -- the man who placed his wet socks over the air vent above the seat to dry them out. The smell permeated the entire plane.

Smelly feet and dirty diapers seem to cause the most gross out's on planes these days. Leopard recounts one young couple.

"During the first class meal service, they decided to change their infants diaper there in the first class seat when it was soiled. I had to instruct them to get up and go to the restroom to finish that."

This for a job that starts out paying about $17 per flight hour -- those hours are counted only after the plane door shuts. Despite the grossness, the rudeness, the craziness, Leopard who has a commercial pilot's license, loved his job.

He says with the flying public these days, you have to grade on a curve because of all they go through before they even board the plane.

"I mean by the time you get in your seat you're already cooked. The plane is like a pressure cooker, it can bring out the worst in people," says Leopard.

Leopard doesn't expect the flying experience to improve for the average flier anytime soon.

"Everybody wants everything cheap so you're going to suffer more crowds crammed on airplanes, but you're going to have cheap tickets though."

Full List of the 10 Grossest Things

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