The Nation: Fly Me

Not long ago National Airlines began a $9.5 million advertising campaign aimed at personalizing its service. Ads picturing a lovely smiling stewardess proclaimed: "I'm Margie [or Nancy, or Cheryl, or Barbara]. Fly Me." National painted the girls' names on the noses of some of its planes—like World War II bombers—and passed out "Fly Me" buttons for the girls to wear on their uniforms.

Some National stewardesses decided that the idea amounted to a personal rather than a commercial proposition, and was a blatant sexist pitch. Three of them on a Halloween flight from New York to Miami displayed a cardboard cutout of...

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