Check out this Flightglobal article, which talks about a United 767 diverting to Miami enroute from Chicago to Sau Paulo. What happened, you ask? A medical emergency? A threatening passenger? A mechanical issue? No, a purser that wasn’t respecting the captain’s authori-tah!
So how the hell does this happen? Generally even the worst flight attendants and pilots manage to ignore each other, but I think the “not respecting authority” part is a dead giveaway that the captain was a bit of you-know-what. If I had to speculate, I’d say the captain was on his break and somehow disagreed with the purser about something, and everything got blown out of proportion from there. It could be anything else, of course, but if he was actually in the cockpit their interaction would be so limited, so you’d really have to try hard to have a disagreement. Who knows, though, but based on the “authority” bit, I would guess this was a captain on a serious power trip, although I doubt the purser was an angel either.
This does raise a few other interesting questions. Was there another purser qualified flight attendant aboard? What the hell happened to the purser when they dumped him at MIA at around 3:30AM in the morning? Sucks to be him!
Any other theories, flight attendants (or passengers)?
(Tip of the hat to Elliot)