A day before the HPOA/HOPA hoax, JetBlue flight attendant Steven Slater lost his shit at a difficult customer, said goodbye over the plane's PA system and exited the plane on an emergency slide. The plane had already landed, or it would have been more badass.
"I have the weirdest feeling like I've forgotten something."
People everywhere adopted him as a folk hero. They ignored the fact that releasing the safety slide was dangerous and kind of inconvenient to all the other passengers who weren't being assholes and cost the company tens of thousands of dollars, and the fact that he apparently had a substance abuse problem, and was suffering from depression.
Because that gets in the way of what we need this story for, and what we need all stories of this type for. We can't make a hero out of a guy who was making poor decisions because he was having trouble coping with his dad dying and his mother getting cancer and was drinking to deal with it. We wanted a quipping action-movie hero who made a clever bon mot over the loudspeaker and slid offscreen with a smirk on his face and a beer in his hand while the huffy passenger (probably a fat woman) watched in shock and the rest of the passengers applauded with a slow clap.
Every urban legend needs a slow clap.
Because work can be a bitch in the best of times, and in these shitty times, more of us than ever are stuck in jobs we want to get out of in some kind of clever, movie-like way, but can't, because the only other choice is no job at all. Believing someone else did it is the next best thing. That or making up your own fake story and posting it on a forum.