Dan’s the man, but this Halloween, Dan was Bobbie Jo, a sassy six-foot-five Dallas-based Southwest Airlines Stewardess with a love of god, flying, high hair, and even higher heels!
A Star Is Born
Dan’s costume choice was a surprise and a massive hit with the flight crew he shuttles between Reno-Tahoe International Airport and surrounding hotels while working as a crew transport driver. “The crews’ reactions were fantastic; all of them, including the pilots, enjoyed the costume with big smiles and high fives,” Dan said.
On A Fly Guy’s Cabin Crew Lounge, the world’s largest social media network of aviation professionals, photos of Bobbie Jo quickly went viral, generating more than 170,000 impressions. Most on the site were impressed that Dan could walk, drive, and lift luggage wearing knee-high boots with a 5-inch heel. “I absolutely applaud this dude in those heels,” Doug Dougherty wrote. “That’s hard enough for any woman with experience wearing them to do this. But for a guy to do this, it is extremely hard. So KUDOS!” Others were sad they missed the chance to meet Bobbie Jo in person. “I’m jealous as hell that I did not get that layover now,” Victor Tomy wrote. “Absolutely brilliant!”
About the drag look
Dan’s drag persona couldn’t be further from his real life. A retired firefighter, Dan works a regular job in construction in addition to driving crew transport and enjoys a good game of golf with his wife by his side. The idea for Bobbie Jo came when he and his wife decided to switch roles for a company costume party. Dan’s wife Rachel went dressed as a golfer, and he dressed wearing Rachel’s Southwest flight attendant uniform. Dan and Rachel won the best costume award, and the mile-high look was such a sensation Dan asked his company, Peppermill, if Bobbie Jo could work Halloween day crew pick-ups. She was cleared for takeoff!
Some professionals were brought in to help Dan’s transformation. Rachel enlisted another Southwest flight attendant friend to paint Dan’s face, and it took the team an hour and a half to bring Bobbie Jo to life.
And what was Dan’s favorite part of the look? He said it was the boots and big Texas hair. We asked Dan if he just happened to have the boots in his closet, and we were surprised he did. He had used them for a Rocky Horror Picture Show costume a few years back.
Drag takes its toll
All the photos and smiles didn’t come without sacrifice. “My feet paid a dear price, the boots were a full size bigger than what I wear, so they were a little loose,” Dan said. “I still have a few blisters but well worth the fun of bringing smiles and laughter to crews and hotel guests that were away from home on Halloween.” The pains also gave way to a new way of seeing the pressure fashion places on females. “I have a newfound respect for women who wear heels,” he admitted.
Dressing as a woman wasn’t a drag
Even with all the pain and blisters, Dan loved doing drag.
“It was an unbelievable experience to be out of my skin and be someone I would never experience as myself,” Dan said proudly.
This isn’t the last the airline world has seen of Bobbie Jo. Dan plans to reprise his role next year, and Bobbie Jo will have a bestie. Dan said he persuaded a fellow driver, also a retired firefighter, to join him in drag for the crew pick-ups next year.
We can’t wait to see Dan and his crew next year, and for all the US-based flight attendants, you now know which flight to bid for next Halloween.