The Mile High Club

Sex Objects in the Sky coverSex Objects in the Sky

We have featured some career books for the airline industry over and over again.  They really highlight the glamour and “free travel” aspects. Unlike the others geared to young people these titles are geared toward adults. Baby Boomers: you might remember Gloria Steinham’s expose as a Playboy Bunny in the early 1960s.  (You might also remember the TV movie adaptation called a Bunny’s Tale with Kirstie Alley in 1985)  This book might be considered that twin.  Kane, an American Airlines stewardess, does a feminist expose on the life of the stewardess. Provocative title not withstanding, this book probably does have a role in library collections, especially in a women’s history and or labor collection.  Public libraries, I think, keeping it would depend on your readership and collection objectives.  You might get a few takers from the “look how far we have come” kind of camp if you are a larger public library.


Braniff airlines

Another title in my search brought me this one:

Flying High

Flying High
What it’s Like to be an Airline Stewardess

Keep in mind this title is only 2 years older than the above title, but quite a different tone.  The title also has so much going for it!  This one is a complete weeder as the intention is to give current information about a career as a stewardess.  Details about training and pay and outdated labor laws make this a slam dunk for weeding, but interesting for perspective.  Keep this in a collection somewhere but not in a current career collection.


Flying High contents

Flying High contents


  1. The second book looks awesome. I’m surprised there are no dieting tips to help girls make the weight requirements.

  2. I’m old enough to remember when flying was exciting and an adventure for the family. Courteous and attractive flight attendents , decent food, etc. Now if its a choice between flying and a root canal the root canal would come out ahead.

  3. I thought Braniff was the producer of South Park…? They were actually an airline at one time?

    Fine…I jest!!!

  4. “They really highlight the glamour…aspects.”
    That’s not what I was told growing up. My mother (born in 1919) used to tell me (born in 1957) not to be a stewardess, they were nothing but glorified waitresses!
    Oh…the day when I was 5’9″ and weighed within their range…ok, so the upper range, but still…so long ago…

  5. The titles of these books just amuses me. Damn there goes my career up in the sky. Also I’d probably start screaming my head off if the flight was going to crash.

  6. If only there were an artist’s rendition of the “octopus on roller skates shaped like raquel welch”!

  7. Heck, you can’t even call them stewards/stewardesses anymore. They get all uptight about it. “I’m a FLIGHT ATTENDANT!” Yeah, well, I’m not “too fat to fly” I am “metabolically challenged.” Now shut up, stewardess.

  8. I want to read all of these books. Also, at 5’8″ and just over 135lbs, I can’t believe that I am almost too tall and I am too heavy to be an old-timey stewardess.

  9. I saw just the title of this first, and for some reason thought it would be pictures of naughty cloud formations.

  10. Jami – it’s incorrect to call them “stewardesses” precisely because of outdated, sexist crap like this book. You’re not helping.

  11. Jami- I am not sure why that is. We still call the “wait staff” waiters and waitresses, right? Actors and actresses? Well, my daughter is a theater major and she says women are actors now. But, the Oscars tell it differently.

  12. Am I the only one who finds the juxtaposition of health, safety and radiation hazards with all the sex object/geisha girl talk to be rather jarring?

  13. @Cee – It’s not outdated or sexist at all. It’s their proper title. They are stewardess if they’re women, stewards if they’re men. It’s plain and simple childishness on their parts to whine about the proper name for their jobs. They should grow up.

  14. Ah, semantics. Flight Attendants or Flightcrew may be the best current description of people who work on aeroplanes. Gender specific words are to be avoided nowadays if you wish to be politically correct. The British ‘Guardian’ newspaper only uses ‘actor’, regardless of the performer’s sex. This causes amusing problems when they try to report the Academy Awards each year: Best Actor: Brad Pitt. Best, um, Actor: Angelina Jolie…

    Airlines became extremely sexist in the early ’70s, especially Braniff which actually dressed its ‘Trolley Dollies’ in hotpants and kinky boots. Remember ‘Coffee, tea, or me?’

    These things appear stupid and nauseating from here, but let us learn from the past by stopping and thinking what’s STILL wrong? What’s wrong with our marvellous early 21st Century?

    You will think of lots of things that remain wrong, cruel and unfair, some of them happening near where you live. Let’s all try to go out and change them! Make the future a better place; learn from the past.

  15. Yeah, now I’ve got the old Stan Jones song stuck in my head: “Seeexx objects iiinnn… the skyyyy…” Yee-haw.

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