Sex, wraps, and the Internet.

We were saying the other day that it’s too easy to underestimate the folks at Southwest. They’re almost always doing something new. Take the other sione%20070.jpgday when they began offering a (free) test of the Wi-Fi onboard Internet, complete with a special home page designed for them by Yahoo! That’s neat and interesting.
 
Then they came  out with something else altogether: Southwest signed a deal with Sports Illustrated to paint the weekly mag’s swimsuit issue ‘cover girl’ as a wrap-around on one of its planes. The reaction has been chemical, with a lot of really negative comments on the blog Nuts about Southwest. 

But the model also got a lot of attention, including an appearance on late night chat show host David Letterman’s television show. Letterman introduced her as gracing the exterior of “a Southwest 757,” which is interesting. (At right is the model, a fully clad woman named Bar Refaeli, holding the mag and standing in front of the Southwest jet, which will carry her image for a few weeks.)

 
 

Granted Southwest flight attendants were famed back in the 1970s for wearing teeny, tiny hot- pants as a uniform, Y!SWA_PortalPage_comp_v8 5.JPGbut remember (as many bloggers have noted) that Southwest is also the carrier that got a black eye back in 2007 for asking a scantily clad yoing woman on one of its planes to cover up. Maybe they only let the near-naked fly on the outside?

 On the other hand, sex does sell. Note the order in which we placed our pictures. One is the Yahoo homepage and the other is the model and a Southwest jet. Curiously, one blogger on “Nuts” raved about the beautiful new Boeing and ignored the lady. That’s a TAP (Total Aviation Person)!

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