Absurdly Driven looks at the world of business with a skeptical eye and a firmly rooted tongue in cheek. 

You care about your friends, right?

So when you're seated in first class and they're in mere economy, you want to do something for them, don't you?

At least give them a small taste of your high life, perhaps.

Well, here's the story of an American Airlines passenger whose attempts at helping his friends went a little too far.

Katie Genter, writing at The Points Guy, relates that she was on a flight from Philadelphia to Atlanta yesterday, 

A first class passenger boarded with two friends, whom he helped to slide past the gate agent -- in an apparently brusque manner, with some bad words thrown in -- despite the fact that they had too many carry-ons.

Oh, but the carry-on had only just started.

The first class passenger didn't merely partake of his own pre-departure beverage. He also asked the flight attendant for two more. 

Yes, for his poor chums in the back.

Denied, he then tried to order one for himself and one for the woman seated next to him. This woman was "seemingly was a stranger and didn't want the drink," writes Genter, who was also in first class but, one imagines, impeccably behaved.

The flight attendant brought the drinks. 

You'll be aghast to the point of being a ghost when I tell you that the first class (insert your own noun here) tried to take the two drinks to his friends in economy.

The flight attendant prevented this somewhat obvious maneuver, which apparently included his need to use the economy class bathroom while carrying the two drinks. 

I suspect that the first class (insert your own noun here) may have had an annoying manner about him, which didn't work in his favor.

And then the first class (insert your own noun here) was kicked off the flight. (His friends remained.)

Genter commended the flight attendants. As, she says, did other passengers.

Which really does suggest that the first class (insert your own noun here) was something of a first class (insert your own noun here). 

I, though, knowing how airlines adore rules, asked American for its view.

An airline spokesperson confirmed Genter's story and told me: "The customer caused a disruption during the boarding process. We did offer to rebook the customer on a later flight, but he declined and we provided a full refund."

It does sound like the passenger was an infernal nuisance. 

My mind, though, went to another place. (It's a bad habit.)

Is it, in fact, against American Airlines policy to take a drink to a friend in economy who might, perhaps, be in desperate need of one?

Not specifically.

It is, however, against federal law.

Regulation 14 CFR 121.575 declares: "No person may drink any alcoholic beverage aboard an aircraft unless the certificate holder operating the aircraft has served that beverage to him."

So now you know. It's not so easy to please those less privileged than yourself on a plane.

Especially, it seems, if you might be something of a (insert your own noun here).

Correction: An earlier version of this column misidentified the writer of the story on The Points Guy website. It was Katie Genter.

Published on: May 13, 2018
The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.