July 15, 2011

How to "Hit the Slide" and get Fired with Style!

By Ai Lung Nguyen

Ever wanted to say "Take this job and shove it!"??? Anyone who has ever worked for a slavedriving moronic manager has thought it.

Ever since Steve Slater, the frustrated JetBlue airline attendant, fled the airplane via emergency chute, beer in hand, after berating passengers over the intercom in August 2010 the term "Hit the Slide" has been growing in popularity as a reference to quitting in a spectacularly public fashion.

Lets take example of Brigette DePape, the former parliamentary page in Ottawa, who took her “Stop Harper” protest to the floor of the Senate during the Governor General David Johnston's throne speech... it was a pretty daring move when you consider it was broadcast on live television.

There’s also former CTV reporter Kai Nagata, whose 3,000+ words blog post criticizing the news broadcasting business he was quitting has since made him a mini media celebrity:

Here's the short version of why Kai Nagata quit:
"I quit my job because the idea burrowed into my mind that, on the long list of things I could be doing, television news is not the best use of my short life. The ends no longer justified the means."

And then there was also a couple working for fashion tyrant Peter Nygard who quit by sneaking out of his walled compound where they were basically being held captive against their will and not allowed to leave. They ended up stealing a bunch of Peter Nygard's documents as evidence of his illegal treatment of employees and then escaped through the front gate while being chased by security guards.

Steve Slater airplane departure has spawned a rash of people (and YouTube videos) of people Hitting the Slide and quitting in spectacular ways.

Of course its not professional. Some of us do actually want reference letters and positive feedback from past employers.

Some of us also want to collect unemployment and severance packages so its sometimes better to simply slack off at work and get fired, just so you can collect the money and run.

But sometimes its entirely possible that you are quitting and don't care about professionalism or money. You quit because you just can't take it any more. The work you are doing is so annoying its stressing you out to the point your only choice is to quit.

And assuming you don't have a family or bills to worry about, you can do it and not have as much to be concerned about.

How to "Hit the Slide" and get Fired with Style!
#1. Don't do anything that is obviously illegal like vandalism (or at very least is just a minor misdemeanor charge). ie. Steve Slater was arrested and paid a $10,000 U.S. fine for his actions.

#2. Don't do anything that would infringe any company contracts you signed. ie. The couple that stole records have since been in a lot of trouble battling Peter Nygard's horde of evil lawyers.

#3. Do something which maintains your dignity and shows you are enjoying quitting. ie. Walk around with a big smile on your face, a case of beer under your arm on the day you're being fired and give a beer to everyone at the office you actually liked.

#4. Don't go postal and show up with a gun or explosives. Bad idea and it never ends well. (Seems silly to me when you could just move overseas and start over with a whole new life.)

What you need is a mental image that calms you down... imagine looking at the Earth from outer space. Does whether we get fired or quit in a spectacular way really matter? Does our job really matter?

This comes back to the theory that mankind really isn't meant to be sitting in office cubicles or toiling in factories. We're meant to be OUTSIDE farming, hunting and fishing. Living a life wherein we eat what is necessary, enjoy the simple pleasures of life and aren't caught up in some crazy rat race for pellets of money. Sure, its hippie hogwash talk, but you've thought of doing it yourself before haven't you? Just leave and go some place where you can live peacefully and stress free.

And seriously, what is the advantage of living in the rat race? Movie theatres, traffic, bars, sleazy people, convenience stores, long line ups, fancy restaurants, rude people, shopping malls, annoying crazy people on the subway... for every advantage of living in the rat race there is an equal or greater disadvantage.

Speaking for myself, I quit my job as a dental hygienist years ago and now operate as a globe trotting blogger / dental hygienist for hire (I carry a kit with me and barter my services in regions without access to dentists). Today, still wanted by the government, I survive as a dental hygienist for hire. If you have a tooth ache, if no one else can help, and if you can find me, maybe you can hire Ai Lung Nguyen.


Brigette DePape hopes to land a job with the Public Service Alliance of Canada and now has a Facebook fan page with over 7,000 fans.

Kai Nagata has received numerous job offers and marriage proposals.

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