Tuesday, September 11, 2012

In case of emergency, take off your high-heeled shoes


“In case of emergency, loosen your tie and collar… take off your high-heeled shoes.”

This instruction, delivered via the Turkish Airlines in-flight safety video in a sophisticated female voice, caught my attention during a recent trip to Istanbul.

It offers, I feel, a significant lesson in disaster preparedness which also can be applied to a variety of situations on the ground.

While walking passengers through some worst-case scenarios, the in-flight announcement offers a subtle reminder that how we present ourselves to the world is important.

Harkening back to a more glamorous era, it raises the bar on travel attire. Please note that it is not necessary to “unzip your hoodie and kick off your Crocs” if you find yourself in peril. On land as in the air, dressing with care signals self-esteem and respect for others. (Remember the flap over the Northwestern University lacrosse team members who wore flip flops to the White House?)

In life, as in travel, it is important to put your best foot forward.

Smoothly scripted though they may be, in-flight safety videos are designed to remind us that life can be capricious: If your life were to take an unexpected turn today, what would you want to be wearing?

They also cause us to contemplate, however subliminally, the prospect of our own mortality. And this begs a deeper question: Faced with imminent death, how – and who – would you want to be?



Top photo from Photobucket.com: http://i1057.photobucket.com/albums/t392/Miss-Sexylegs/b7411f5d.jpg

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