Are you ready to depart on a roller coaster of emotions? We hope so, because the following excerpts from the "Aircraft Standards" manual for Abercrombie & Fitch CEO Mike Jeffries' private jet will make you laugh, cry, and probably bang your head against your desk. The manual, which became public by way of a lawsuit filed by a former pilot who says he was fired for being too old, is 47 pages long and makes all the rumors you've heard about gym memberships and required cologne showers for in-store staff members look like a bunch of perfumed roses.
Since we couldn't possibly add anything more humorous and absurd than the rules themselves (we tried), please enjoy this list of highlights from the manual — and feel free to share your outrage/incredulity/uncontrollable laughter in the comments.
Seen and not heard: It goes without saying that models have to be really, really, ridiculously good-looking. But while their lips must be plump and sultry, they better not have a mouth on 'em! The models/actors/flight attendants must respond to any request with a simple "No problem." "Sure," or "Just a minute," — other uncouth utterances are expressly and specifically forbidden.
Head-to-toe uniform (underwear included): Male staff members are encouraged to spritz (read: suffocate) themselves with Abercrombie & Fitch perfume on a regular basis throughout their shift. They are provided with a strict uniform of jeans, boxer briefs, polo shirts, and flip flops (and we're guessing it's one size fits all). Winter coats are allowed if it's under 50 degrees outside, and hats only if it's below 40. If an employee is wearing a hat, it must have a 2-inch-thick brim and be pulled down "approximately in the middle of the forehead." Models are also instructed to sit facing in various directions during takeoff depending on who's on the plane, but must remember that "The First Steward should always be visible to Matthew" [Smith, Jeffries' partner].
This plane had better shine like the top of the Chrysler building: Models must vacuum the carpet in even, straight lines. Exactly eight washcloths must be "tri-folded" and placed atop the vanity in the bathroom at all times. Every surface must be constantly checked for dust and fingerprints. Any loose advertisement or inserts must be removed from all magazines aboard the aircraft, and newspapers must be re-stocked each day in accordance with the location of the aircraft. On flights home, the song "Take Me Home" must be played as guests enter the cabin. And the bedding must be sprayed with something mysteriously called "sleep spray."
Crew members are allowed to eat on flights over two hours (as long as the food is not "aromatic"), but Mr. Smith requires a refined snack twice a day. "Matthew's Tea Service," as it is known, requires Assam in the morning and Darjeeling after 2 p.m., and the teaspoon must be exactly 5.25 inches long.
Dog Paradise: Mr. Jeffries' pets are just as picky as he is, evidently. The following sentence is real: "When Ruby and Trouble travel, Ruby will sit opposite Michael in the cabin, in Sammy's seat. When Sammy travels, Ruby will sit in Trouble's seat." But then, where will Trouble sit?!?
Well, if you thought your boss was crazy, this makes things look a bit brighter. On the other hand, if you had any doubt that you were being judged whenever you walked through an A&F store, you can now rest assured that your normal human smell and inappropriately donned hat are absolutely disgusting. If you're still hungry for more, read the full document here.