Lorenzo: In the Cockpit

In his undergraduate days at Columbia in the early 1960s, classmates dubbed Frank Lorenzo "Frankie Smooth Talk." But as chairman of Texas Air in the 1980s, Lorenzo saves his talking for Wall Street and the boardroom, granting few interviews. In a rare 45-minute conversation last week with Richard Woodbury, TIME's Houston bureau chief, the feisty chairman answered his critics. Some excerpts:

On Texas Air's postmerger growing pains. Putting together the companies produced more disruption than ever expected. That had the impact of upsetting a lot of our passengers. We underestimated the time it would take to get employees trained. There's just...