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jmalone
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I was walking in downtown Chicago recently, and I happened to walk into the Borders bookstore on Michigan Avenue.  I went in to pick up some new books to read on my overnights.  I picked up a copy of The Power Broker by Stephen Frey and The Second Horseman by Kyle Mills.  If you are into political / mystery / thrillers, I think these two books would be a great read. So, after I found the two books that I really wanted, I decided to go over and look at their massive periodical section.  As I was perusing the aisles, I happened upon the aviation section.  As my eyes were wandering over the selection I noticed an Airways Classics magazine No. 3.  Lo and behold, it is ALL about Southwest Airlines and our thirty-five (35) year history!  This is a MUST have for any Southwest Airlines fan.  As I opened the front cover, a picture of fellow blogger Brian Lusk was on the front inside page.  Evidently, Brian has been writing for this magazine since 1989.  I'll go ahead and give you a tease about what is in the magazine and then you can go out and purchase a copy for yourself.  The contents of the magazine include:  35 Years of Luvin' You, Creating Southwest Liveries, Southwest's Other Boeing, Southwest's 3-D Scrapbook, The Next Generation, Thoughts on A Legend, The Heart of Southwest and Gary Kelly:  Reflections and Vision. The magazine also has some great pictures.  So, this afternoon, instead of reading one of the new books that I purchased, I spent the afternoon reading about this GREAT Company that I work for.  If you happen to pick up a copy, be sure to come back here and let Brian know what a WONDERFUL job he did authoring, compiling, and sharing this information with us. WAY TO GO, BRIAN!AirwaysMagNo3
22 Comments
FriendofBlogBoy
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James -- Buddy, you've GOTTA get outta the air more often and spend some time on terra firma. Check out the restaurants, theaters and hang around bookstores! Dude, that classic ( http://www.airwaysmag.com/channels.html?article_id=18&channel_id=13 ) has been out for months and months now! It has already rocketed to the top of the New York Times best seller list and is huge demand around the world. My understanding is that the entire cast of "Lost", Madonna and George Clooney accompanied Brian on his nationwide signing tour and that not one single person in any town they visited would speak to anyone except Brian. The man is a legend in his own mind! Seriously, it IS a terrific tribute to a fantastic airline by someone who is not only skilled at what he does, but is probably more passionate about SW than I am. (of course, they pay him to be passionate...) He obviously did a lot of work and the reward is a wonderful keepsake. He has set a dangerous precedent, though, because he's gonna have an uphill climb to top this one when he creates the Golden Anniversary tribute for 2021! I agree with my Chicago blogpal James -- WAY TO GO, BRIAN! Kim 🙂
Mark_Tate
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I am going to go seek that book! The more I learn about SWA, the more I "luv" it! I have told both my nephews (finishing college) they need to get onboard with SWA! I wish I had when I was younger. And... let me add this. As you all may be aware I operate a Fear of Flying website, which for my own reasons promotes SWA. I feel the folks at SWA are caring and go above and beyond the call of duty for our members. Here is just one example from a recent flight a member took: "Hi all, I just got back from my all too brief trip up to Portland (flew from Oakland, CA) and I had to share my experiences with you all. I myself think it's rather inspiring Just to preface, I had been working on my fear of flying pretty diligently over the past few weeks in preparation for these flights, so my anticipatory anxiety was very in control until I actually got to the airport on Thursday and Sunday. I made sure that I gave myself plenty of time to check in and get to the gate so that I didn't feel rushed. In fact, PDX has a neat perk if you are a member of any of the carriers' frequent flyers programs - a separate security line So I was able to whiz through there on Sunday in about five minutes. Anyway, Thursday I flew out of OAK at 4:25, so I made sure that I got there by 2:30. I purchased some fun magazines (In Touch, People, and Life & Style) and a couple snacks because I hadn't had much time to eat that day. So I moseyed down to my gate - located on the OTHER side of the airport, of course - and checked in with my mom. There weren't many people at the gate when I got there, so I parked myself in the A line and read for awhile. At this point, I was feeling pretty calm so I was thinking I wouldn't need to meet the pilots. Fast forward to about an hour before we were scheduled to leave, though, and it was a completely different story. I was starting to get really nervous. I was in fact sweating bullets. So I got on the phone with my mom again and was airing out some of my feelings when I saw a few official-looking people in Southwest uniforms standing over near pre-board. After saying good-bye to my mom, I went over to the pre-board area where they were standing and hovered for a minute before spotting the gate agent. I was trying to be as grown up and calm as possible. Here's an approximate retelling of my conversation: Gate agent: Do you need some help? Me, shakily: Um, I'm a nervous flyer and I have a letter that says...(sob) At this point, one of the Southwest people has seen me burst into tears and she comes over and gives me a big hug. Turns out she's an off-duty FA commuting home and she offers to sit next to me during the flight. One of the men standing with her also happens to be the captain for my flight, so he talks to me for a few minutes about what the flight will be like (smooth) and about how long it will take to get there (an hour and twenty minutes). By this time, our plane has arrived and Leslie, the previously mentioned off-duty FA, walks with me to the plane. We grab a seat toward the back of the plane and we talk about my fear of flying while other people are boarding. Our flight isn't completly full, so thankfully we get the aisle all to ourselves. She reassures me as we're taxiing out to the runway that flying is totally safe and she wouldn't be doing what she's doing if it weren't so, as she has a younger son waiting for her in Portland. Take-off is uneventful and for the first time since I've become a fearful flyer, I don't feel a sense of dread as we climb into the perfectly blue sky. We pass the time by completing three crossword puzzles - celebrity-related ones, since they're the only kind I can do! - and before I know it we're starting our descent into Portland. The on-duty FA's have been walking by to check on me and one of them, Marie (I think), comes over to me about 10 minutes before we land and hands me a certificate that says "Southwest Airlines Welcomes" with my name written in and the date - she had all the FA's sign it and then written out the sweetest note on the back, congratulating me on facing my fear of flying and ending with "the sky is NOT the limit!" After we land, I'm de-planing with Leslie and the captain (Steve Hannah) comes out and says, "I was thinking of you when I landed the plane - I wanted to make it a really smooth one for you but I must have been concentrating too hard because it was a little too hard." Then he invites me into the cockpit where I get to look at all the instruments and doo-dads (that's the technical term, right?) and even get my picture taken in there. It was, quite simply, the ride of my life. What's more, when Leslie and I parted ways, she gave me her phone number and said that if I ever needed someone to fly with to give her a call. She was such a cheerleader for me and everyone on that flight was an amazing example of the quality people Southwest employs. Needless to say, my flight back was much easier (though I did meet the captain) and I arrived home last night with a huge smile on my face. My certificate is currently hanging on my fridge. Please excuse the novel-length post, but I thought it was important for me to tell everyone about this. By no means am I over my fear of flying, but all the encouragement I received has really helped me along. Needless to say, I'll be writing Southwest about my experience with their airline this weekend." Great job Leslie, Steve, and the rest of your crew and the folks at OAK! Mark Tate Taking Flight - Fear of Flying Support www.takingflight.us
FriendofBlogBoy
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Mark, What a wonderful testimony to the LUVing and caring spirit of so many SWA Employees! Those of us who do not suffer from that potentially crippling fear really cannot imagine how terrifying it can be to do what many of us do regularly and take for granted -- just walking through the doorway of a plane. Bless you and others who provide assistance and comfort as people face and battle their fears, and bless the wonderful folks at SW for their sensitivity to the issues that some of their passengers face! Kim
FriendofBlogBoy
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As a true Southwest enthusiast, this seems like the best place for me to post this... I want to publicly thank a few special people for being so wonderful. The details aren't relevant, but believe me when I say that the spirit of LUV is alive and very evident in certain folks who deserve some extra recognition. A HUGE thank you to: Brian Sunny Shelley Lacey Marilyn and last but most certainly not least... Colleen! You folks are absolutely AWESOME and I can't tell you how much your friendship means to me!! Thank you so much, Kim 🙂
Kevin211
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Ok Kim you blog a lot, What do you do (job)? SWA res.
FriendofBlogBoy
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Kevin, This IS my job. Brian Lusk pays me $278,000 a year to sit and type witty comments for his blog. He's a very generous guy, but before you ask, NO, there are no more openings and I don't need an assistant. Oh yeah, I get all the little bags of peanuts that I want for free, too. Ain't life grand? Kim P. S. Actually, Kevin, I am a traveling salesman and I am not an Employee of Southwest Airlines. I just play one on TV... :-)
Jeramy_Brian1
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Fight on for ol' sc, our men fight on to victory. Go trojans! Let's win our 3rd championship in the last 4 years and 12th overall...
Karen_E_Rizzuto
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I would love to Fly Southwest from Islip in NY. But there are no flights from there to either or Philly or Pittsburgh where is my final destination.Come on South west help me here!
Steven_Hill
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I applaud Southwest for sticking with the plan to offer low fairs throughout the country, well done! There is however a market that begs for Southwest to provide service. I live in Wichita Kansas, a mere 350 miles from Love Field. In order for me to fly Southwest I have to drive 2 hrs for an Oklahoma departure to Dallas, or 2.5 hours to Kansas City. Wichita would love to see Southwest provide service. American Airlines provides non stop flights to DFW from ICT for around $350.00 R/T, I believe Northwest Airlines has the same fair. Is there a reason Southwest cannot provide service out of Wichita? Please Southwest, give us a chance. Steve Hill
FriendofBlogBoy
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James, Your thread here about literary tributes to SWA has gotten slightly derailed, so let me try to get it back on track by asking you and my fellow bloggers if any of you have read "Lessons in Loyalty: How Southwest Airlines Does It - An Insider's View" by Lorraine Grubbs West? Of all of the 'major' books about Southwest (I'm not counting every business book that has a reference about SW, just ones that are strictly devoted to Southwest Airlines), it is the only one that I don't have yet. It has been on my Amazon.com wish list, but I have not yet found it in a bookstore to be able to thumb through it in person. Is this a book worth waiting and 'wishing' for? Is it so great that I should short-circuit the gift process and rush out and buy it myself now? Inquiring minds want to know! Thanks for any input... Kim
James5
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Kim - I'm not familiar with that specific book, BUT I am very familiar with Lorraine. I had the opportunity to be on our FAMily Notification Team when I worked at HDQ. Lorraine was one of the primary folks responsible for this Team. I would have to say that just knowing Lorraine personally, I would get the book and take what she says to heart. In another bit of news, I was deadheading the other day and had a little 92 yr old lady on my flight and it so happened it was her first flight. I was perusing my Airways Magazine and she became very interested in the history of SWA and was asking A LOT of questions. So, I just gave her my magazine. I'm on my way out shortly (Yes, I actually have a day off up here in Chicago) so, I'm on my way downtown to try and find another copy at my friendly neighborhood Borders. Thanks for all the kind words and I hope to have you on one of my flights soon! Regards, James Malone MDW Flight Attendant
FriendofBlogBoy
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James, Many thanks for the positive recommendation about Lorraine -- it sounds like I'd definitely better move her book to the top of my wish list! (let's see, my birthday and Father's Day are past, but Christmas is coming up fast!) You're awesome for giving away your copy of Brian's epic masterpiece! I hope you can still find it in the bookstores in the Windy City area; it was here and gone within a couple of weeks in Dallas. But, if you can't, here's good news for ya: whip out your trusty sterling silver level American Express card (I know that FAs are paid millions of dollars a year) and get online at the Airways store ( http://airwaysmag.com/catalog/product_info.php?cPath=23&products_id=32 ), where you can stock up on hundreds of copies for yourself, to give to friends (they make great birthday, wedding and housewarming gifts) and to hand out to desperate passengers on those flights where you run out of peanuts! Best wishes and I keep looking for you on my flights! Kim 🙂
blusk
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Okay Kim and James, I guess that there is no such thing as bad publicity, so I thank you both for my "15 minutes of fame." Brian
FriendofBlogBoy
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Brian, Your fine work on the Airways Classic really only deserved 14 minutes of fame, but James and I agreed that we'd round up. Kim 🙂
KYRA_M__MAILLAR
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First of all, I would like to start off by saying "I TRULY LOVE SOUTHWEST AIRLINES." I have never flown on your airlines until recently. On Wednesday September 27, 2006 at 1420 (2:20pm) when I took Flight #2320 out of Philadelphia, PA to Ft Myers, Fl. I was on leave going to spend a long weekend with my best friend. It was one of my best! I want to say a huge thank you to the In-flight Crew (Flight Attendants) from that flight, HENRY, JENNIFER AND BRiN (Spelling). They were all fantastic! The entire flight from boarding to landing is to be commended. The crew especially Henry made each and every passenger feel special. Being that I am in the military and am used to boarding the aircraft at the last minute, I keep forgetting you can not do that in the civilian sector! But needless to say I made the flight and I am glad I did.... From Henry doing the safety brief until the very end, he you can tell enjoys his job. It reminds me of flying with my squadron and going overseas! When I got up to stretch my legs and utilize the restroom, I had the opportunity to speak with the crew. When they heard that I was in the military, they really made me feel special. They genuinely showed and interest and were very thankful for the efforts that I have contributed in this war. During descent into Ft Myers, FL, Henry singled me out and announced me as a special VIP onboard, a Navy Chief sitting in row16c, who has been overseas serving is going on a much needed vacation and we just want to thank her for her service and what she does. It literally brought a tear to my eye, because the rest of the passengers were clapping and saying thank you. I was not expecting that. Then I had a song dedicated to me which was sung by Brin. I can not say thank you enough for the professionalism which was displayed on the flight by the entire crew. I know this is a long post and I am not sure if this is the spot where it goes, but please let this crew know I would love to fly with them anytime and anywhere, I have spread the word when I got back to my family, friends and co-workers at the base of what a great flight I had going down. Keep it up!!!! And once again, thank you. Kyra M. Maillard
FriendofBlogBoy
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Kyra, Congratulations, you're now a Southwest Airlines Customer for life! Once you've sampled the SW form of Positively Outrageous Service, you'll be spoiled, and those military transports just won't seem as wonderful as before! You may know that quite a few of the SWA pilots are former military pilots, and some of them are still in the Reserves or the Guard. Southwest has had a long and special relationship with all of the branches of the military, and as a very patriotic company, they support the efforts of our men and women who serve our country. Please allow me to add my own sentiments to those of Henry and his crewmates in thanking you for ALL that you do for the United States. Those of us who are not in the military will never fully know, or completely be able to appreciate, all of the dangers you've faced or the sacrifices that you've made. But, we can enjoy the freedoms here that so many of you have earned for us throughout the 230-year history of our nation and its uniformed defenders. I pray that God will protect you and comfort your family as they await your return home, and that the Lord will hasten that day when you can come home for good. THANK YOU!!! Kim
Louisa
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I'm leaving for Chicago next week on SOuthwest and I have the sickest feeling of flying. I've flown there before but this time its different. Any help?
FriendofBlogBoy
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Louisa, There was a thread in this blog some time back that talked about dealing with flying phobias. There are numerous groups that have programs, and one of them seemed to have some affiliation with Southwest as I recall. I think the "graduation ceremony" was a flight on SWA. You might search through this site and see what you can find. I'm in a rush to get out the door this morning, but if you don't find it, I'd bet our very helpful BlogMaster, Mr. Lusk, will post a link here to that thread. Regardless of your program or approach to dealing with your fears, I can't imagine there is ANY airline better equipped to help you enjoy your flight and put your concerns behind you with their generous helpings of happiness, confidence, professionalism and Positively Outrageous Service! Take care, Kim
blusk
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Hi Louisa, Well Kim gives me greater credit than I deserve. We don't have a specificposting on fear of flying, but if you will start with this post by Captain Ray Stark, it is one of a series where he explains the various stages of flight.Â
Scott5
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Louisa, Don't hesitate to let the great staff at the departure gate and/or on the plane know that you do have a fear of flying. They will look for an opportunity to help make it easier. I would also try to get to the airport with more time prior to departure than usual. Also check in online as close to departure time as close to possible the day before your flight. This will be especially important on your return flight. But take time to talk with the great Southwest employees when they are free before boarding.
Judy11
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Can someone help me? I'm trying to remember the name of the Southwest catalog. I saw some shoes that I'd like to check out, but can't remember the brand. All I can remember is Spirit magazine, but it's not that...it's the catalog. Thanks.
jmalone
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Judy - I believe what you are looking for is the SkyMall. The link for this is http://www.skymall.com James MDW FA