Steven Slater -- the beer-wielding, expletive-dropping, emergency-slide-sliding, doughy Jet Blue flight attendant -- reminded us that any visit to the airport can be an adventure. And in Miami, we up the ante on the high jinks, if not hijackings. Here are five post-9/11 reminders (most of which occurred this year -- not a good sign) why you ought to pop some Xanax before boarding at Miami International Airport:
5. DUI pilots
The one group you thought you could count on at any airport, even at MIA, was the pilots. But two America West pilots in 2005 spent hours drinking and playing pool at Mr. Moe's in Coconut Grove before getting into the cockpit for their flight to Phoenix. Luckily, they were called back to the gate and arrested before they got airborne. They were charged with DUI (yes, an airplane is classified as a vehicle in Miami-Dade).
4. Jew-hating Muslim on way to Motor City
Mansor Mohammad Asad, 43, basically fulfilled the stereotypical nightmare scenario for any airplane traveler since 9/11. As his flight to Detroit taxied on the tarmac at MIA in January, he jumped into the aisle and yelled in Arabic that he wanted to kill all Jews. The plane did a quick u-turn and returned to the gate, where Asad was immediately tasered and arrested. Fun times.
3. Must be the shoes
Everybody remembers Richard Reid, the Shoe Bomber. (How could we forget? He's the reason we have to take off our shoes at security!) But even before he tried to light his mountain climbers on fire, there was a guy who tried to conceal a hacksaw blade and razor blade in his shoe when boarding a plane at MIA in 2003. The passenger was traveling with his wife and children. Nobody knows what his intentions were, but the real question is how did he avoid severing his pinkie toe?
2. Small penis, big trouble
Rolando Negrin is small as hell and he's not going to take it anymore. After enduring about a year's worth of insults regarding his millimeter peter (after a full body scan revealed his package size), Negrin went Slater on an MIA co-worker in an airport parking lot and beat him with a baton in May. Not exactly something you want to see when dropping your car off in short-term parking.
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1. H-lovin' cargo workers
From the airport that brought you Operation Ramp Rats in the late 1990s, it's good to know that while security may increase, our cargo workers continue to find ways to help move drugs to and from Miami. This past Thursday, 15 cargo workers were rounded up and charged with helping import multikilo loads of heroin and cocaine from Central and South America.