Coffee, Tea, or Mea Culpa?

Anything subtitled “Confessions of a Flight Attendant” blares a warning equivalent to “proceed to the nearest emergency exit.” But despite its awkward title, Around the World in a Bad Mood has been collecting admirable notices across the country. Written and performed by real-life flight attendant Rene Foss, the comic one-woman program offers insight into the world of the artists formerly known as stewardesses. There are bits about the goofy demands of passengers and the “secret language” flight attendants use to dis us. Audience favorites include the litany of most-asked questions (“Can I have another bag of peanuts?” “What river is that?” “Do you have a boyfriend?”) and, as one might imagine, monologues about the mental and physical abuse that are part of a stew’s high-flying career.

Foss originally planned to be a musical-comedy star, but caved to pressure from her parents and then wound up liking her make-ends-meet job flying the friendly skies. “I wanted something where I could deal with abusive people who would blame me for everything that went wrong in their lives,” she says in the show. “Also, I have a particular fondness for picking up garbage.”

Thu., Jan. 10, 7:30 p.m.; Fri., Jan. 11, 7:30 p.m.; Sat., Jan. 12, 4:30 & 7:30 p.m.; Sun., Jan. 13, 4:30 & 7:30 p.m.; Thu., Jan. 17, 7:30 p.m.; Fri., Jan. 18, 7:30 p.m.; Sat., Jan. 19, 4:30 & 7:30 p.m.; Sun., Jan. 20, 4:30 & 7:30 p.m., 2008
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Robrt L. Pela has been a weekly contributor to Phoenix New Times since 1991, primarily as a cultural critic. His radio essays air on National Public Radio affiliate KJZZ's Morning Edition.
Contact: Robrt L. Pela