Was MSNBC’s Mika Brzezinski just joking or was she channeling some actual frustrations with her employers at MSNBC? As Brzezinski sat in as a guest co-host of Saturday’s Today show on NBC, she repeatedly joked about admiring Steven Slater, the flight attendant who quit his job at JetBlue by erratically bailing out of his plane down the emergency chute holding two beers. While co-host Amy Robach admitted that she was "getting sick of this story," Brzezinski had only just heard the story because she had been vacationing the past week. Reveling in her fascination with Slater, she made such declarations as, "I feel his pain," "I think I love him," and, "I have dreams about doing that actually."
Although at one point she referred to sometimes being annoyed at unruly airline passengers as a reason for sympathizing with him, she also twice joked about jumping out of the window of the NBC studio at 30 Rock. At the top of the show, she jokingly predicted, "I might jump out the window with a beer. You never know." During a plug later, she mused: "Two beers, I love him. It's my dream just to, like, right outside the window of 30 Rock. What do you think? On an escape hatch."
Below is a transcript of the relevant portion of the Saturday, August 14, Today show on NBC:
AMY ROBACH: And then we're going to show you the exclusive first video of Steven Slater-
MIKA BRZEZINSKI: I love this.
ROBACH: -as the JetBlue flight attendant-
BRZEZINSKI: I feel his pain.
ROBACH: -fed up with his job, abandoned his plane, slid down the emergency chute this week at New York's Kennedy Airport. I have to say, as we were talking about this, I said, "I'm kind of getting sick of this story." And you said, "What? I just heard about it."
BRZEZINSKI: No, no.
ROBACH: Do you have television in Maine?
BRZEZINSKI: I have dreams of doing that, actually. (LAUGHS) So no, we didn't really watch. I did just hear about it yesterday, but I love it.
ROBACH: It's all new to Mika, but that's good.
BRZEZINSKI: I love it.
ROBACH: Then you can do the story because you're excited about it.
BRZEZINSKI: I'll do the story.
ROBACH: All right.
BRZEZINSKI: I might jump out the window with a beer. You never know.
ROBACH: Oh, all right.
ROBACH: Back inside Studio 1A, I'm Amy Robach along with Mika Brzezinski. Lester is enjoying the weekend off. Coming up on Today, this is Mika's favorite story.
ROBACH: She's new to it. (BRZEZINSKI LAUGHS) More bumpy skies for the JetBlue flight attendant.
BRZEZINSKI: I think I love him.
BRZEZINSKI: Steven Slater was arrested and charged with criminal mischief, reckless endangerment and trespassing. Now new video has been released of the escape hatch being deployed from that plane. I believe he went down that thing with a beer in his hand. We'll see.
ROBACH: I think it’s two beers.
BRZEZINSKI: Two beers, I love him. It's my dream just to, like, right outside the window of 30 Rock. What do you think? On an escape hatch.
ROBACH: Might be a little dangerous. Might be a little dangerous.
BRZEZINSKI: All right, maybe not.
JEFF ROSSEN: Slater hasn't been fired just yet. He's just suspended. He says he still wants to be a flight attendant for JetBlue. That is unlikely now, to say the very least. Airline executives, Mika, say that there's no excuse for what he did, regardless of what the reason was.
BRZEZINSKI: Mmmm. I wouldn't mind him on my flight. I have seen-
ROSSEN: You love this guy.
BRZEZINSKI: -over the past couple of days, I've been on some nightmare flights-
BRZEZINSKI: -and there have been some nightmare passengers. So do I feel bad? Should I feel bad for kind of feeling his pain?
ROSSEN: Nightmare passengers.
BRZEZINSKI, LAUGHING: I'm the perfect passenger.
ROSSEN: No, you, no, you shouldn't feel bad about it because I think it's resonated with a lot of people. He's got over 200,000 people on his Facebook fan page-
BRZEZINSKI: That’s amazing.
ROSSEN: -who say, "I want to do the same thing at my job." But the prosecutors, as you heard, say this is serious.
BRZEZINSKI: Yeah, he broke the law. I guess that's the bottom line.
ROSSEN: They say it doesn't matter what happened on the plane. He broke the law.
BRZEZINSKI: Jeff Rossen, thank you very much.