Teen Learns That Cutting Southwest's Boarding Line Means Apologizing To The Entire Plane

Learning how to conduct yourself as a responsible adult is something we all (well, mostly all) experience at certain times in life. To wit: One Texas high school lacrosse player was served a very valuable lesson recently about remaining considerate even during the often frustrating experience of boarding a plane. After the teen used Southwest Airlines’ first come, first served open seating boarding process to try and jump the line, his coaches made him pay for it in a very public manner.

The high school junior was caught trying to skip the line to angle for a better seat while the team was flying to a lacrosse tournament. His coaches and the flight crew then decided the best punishment befitting his crime was to stand up in front of not only his teammates, but the entire plane full of people and apologize for being so inconsiderate.

At first he tried to get away with a curt, “I apologize,” but the flight attendants weren’t about to let him go so easy, and handed him a handwritten letter to read from. As shown in a video from CBS News, he read:

“My fellow travelers: Today, I come to you with great remorse. During the boarding process, I took advantage of this airline’s kindness. While some of my teammates were called to the front of the line, I was not. And yet, I cut in line and took a seat that rightfully belonged to one of you good people. This is not how my coaches, teammates or parents expect me to behave, and for all of this I apologize. I hope you will all find it in your hearts to forgive me, for I am just a young man that thinks I am smarter than I am. Enjoy your flight, and remember to fly Southwest, because they let my coach do this to me.”

The best part? All the knowing snickers from adults on the plane who probably got caught doing something similar back in the day and now relish seeing a teen take responsibility for behaving badly.

His coaches tell CBS News that for all of his line-jumping antics, he’s actually a pretty good kid, overall.

Teen’s public apology for cutting in line [CBS News]