A man rudely called a Philippine Airlines (PAL) Pinay flight attendant as ‘serbidora.’ Although there’s really nothing wrong with that, it was how she was called that made it all wrong. But despite the insult, flight attendant Monique Francois D. Gloria kept her composure. She shared her story on Facebook last Saturday, November 28, 2015. Read it below and be inspired.
According to Gloria, she and her crew have just gotten off their shuttle bus at NAIA Terminal 2 to report for their flight to Saigon. But suddenly, they heard a man saying, “Ayan na mga serbidora!” (Here comes the service crew!) in a very disrespectful manner, not just once, but three times. The man was with another guy, and they seemed to be enjoying their stint.
Gloria said her crew looked at the men but decided to ignore them. She said she also looked at the rude man, eye to eye but in a nice manner. The flight attendant said she couldn’t help but to smile, as the man (who is in his 40s, and wearing shirt, shorts and slippers) turned red in shame. And instead of confronting the man, she and her crew continued walking with pride.
“Sad truth though, is that some of us have a tendency to look down on someone who holds a job in the rank and file department, service industry, or what others perceive as menial labor…When will we realize that there is DIGNITY in whatever work we do?” Monique Francois D. Gloria wrote on Facebook, as part of her lengthy but very inspiring message.
Below is the full context of her message not only to her fellow flight attendants but to all OFWs around the world and local laborers, no matter what kind of service work they do. If you are a waiter, cashier, bagger, dishwasher, street sweeper, garbage collector, maid (kasambahay), construction worker, etc., we guarantee, this will make you proud.
“Ayan na mga serbidora!” It was not what he said, but his manner of saying it that caught my attention.
My crew and I had just gotten off the shuttle bus to report for our Saigon flight at the NAIA 2. I had a beautiful, experienced lot and I was just so proud when I looked to see them trailing behind me. Then I heard this man say it. Not just once, but thrice! He said it in such a spiteful, condescending manner filled with malice and intent; to catch our attention and to rile us! I looked as to where this was coming from and saw this man. Probably in his 40’s, wearing a shirt, pair of shorts and slippers. He was with another guy and they seem to be enjoying themselves thinking they could get a not so nice reaction from us, therefore assuring themselves we are way below their stature in life. One of my crew did look at them, but decided it was not worth the effort to give them the time of day. “Not when I am in uniform, purser”.
My reaction to this man? I couldn’t help but smile and laugh out loud when our eyes met. The guy turned in shame. I happily continued walking, fully aware of the daunting, yet wonderful things my job has to offer!
Sad truth though, is that some of us have a tendency to look down on someone who holds a job in the rank and file department, service industry, or what others perceive as menial labor. Never mind if the person earns well enough or if they are working for an honest day’s pay. Apparently, to some, only a management position of some sort deserves respect. That only positions that require some sort of “brain” usage is indicative of having a good education. And, only if you have a good education can you be deemed respectable. I hope I still have your attention here.
In other countries, particularly western ones like the United States, Canada and in Europe, a person’s position is unimportant. As long as you are contributing to society by means of an honest day’s work, you do not bother others for hand-outs and you contribute to the betterment of the country you are in, you are respected equally!
Why is it that we look down on certain positions? Do we feel it’s too lowly for our ego? Another sad reality is that some of us would rather wait for remittances from our OFW families than to work menial jobs because it’s “nakakahiya”! An attitude that further feeds insult to our laborers both here and abroad. Have we ever thought what would happen to our society if there were no “menial laborers”? Who makes sure you have a clean workplace? Janitors. Garbage collectors. Who grows the food that nourishes you? Farmers and farm aides. Who built the high-tech, ultra-modern buildings you executives are so proud to hold office in? Carpenters, masons, electricians. A lot of them, by the way, are not even elementary school graduates. Who makes your dining out in high-class restaurants an unforgettable experience?
The chefs, bus boys, the dishwashers, the waiters. Who takes care of your children while you play dress up and go to work as you enjoy your management position with matching out of proportion salary? Your kasambahay, nanny, family driver. Who assures your comfortable and safe flights? The travel agent, check-in counter clerks, porters, baggage loaders, your Flight attendants, aka, serbidoras. Who makes your shopping a breeze? Sales people, cashiers, baggers. Who nurtures, protects, love and care most for our children? Housewives, working mothers. Heck, you can’t put a price tag on this! I could go on and on, but there is no end to this.
When will we ever realize that each of us play a major part in each others’ lives? When will we see that each and every laborer deserves respect? Not just to a certain degree, but the same respect given to any company owner or top executive. When will we realize that there is DIGNITY in whatever work we do? No shame in the fact that the food you serve your children did not come from something you lied for or stolen from. An HONEST day’s living.
My children grew up with this simple thought. “A person who is not nice to the waiter, is NOT a good person at all!” Oh, and yes, PROUD SERBIDORA here. At your service!