party lines

On Delta Airlines’ Secret Service


Bond girls Jane Seymour, Grace Jones, and Maud Adams. Don’t you want to fly Delta now?Photo: Courtesy Dan Klores Communications

You can’t bring water on your flight anymore, but that doesn’t mean you can’t wet your beak. At least if you’re flying Delta, where efforts to ease passenger tension in this age of check-in delays and cavity searches have turned to that time-tested panacea: designer booze. Well aware that a buzzed flier is likely a happier one, the airline enlisted nightlife mogul Rande Gerber to create a special cocktail list, which will be available on Delta flights starting next year. To promote this, and for reasons we don’t begin to comprehend, last night the airline gathered a trio of former James Bond girls (Delta is adding a direct New York–to–London flight later this month, and yes, Bond is British, but that’s a tenuous connection at best) and a gaggle of guests — mostly men, most old enough to prefer Pussy Galore to Christmas Jones — at Gerber’s Stone Rose, which is in the Time Warner Center and thus far from any airport, to drink to drunk flying.

Grace Jones — perhaps you know her as May Day from A View to a Kill — was clad in a shimmering vintage Issey Miyake number replete with a hood and definitely could use that drink. “I actually have to fly back to London tomorrow at 8 a.m.,” she said. “Not on Delta, though. I need me a sleeper bed, so I’m flying British Airways.”

Awkward pause.

Oh, whoops,” she continued. “Was I not supposed to say that? Whatever, I don’t give a fuck. These American airlines have to get their act together. Corporate cannibalism, this is. They took all my makeup on my way over here — lip gloss, powder, everything. Like I’m gonna blow shit up with some eyeliner.”

Lip glossed or not, how does she feel about Daniel Craig as the next Bond? “I just want to see him coming out of the water in short shorts,” Jones said. We concurred — Mr. Craig is quite dashing — but what of the fact he reportedly had to be taught to drive stick shift for the role? She laughed. “It’s funny they let that leak out. That’s cute. Driving stick is very phallic. I hope he’s picked it up by now.”

A Delta representative interrupted to remind Jones that her presence was required to judge a martini-making contest. (The booze-plane-London-Bond series of connections was taken seriously, even if it was incomprehensible.) It’s unclear which bartender actually won the event — all were wearing short black cocktail dresses and thigh-high boots, and, for the most part, were indistinguishable, but the Bond-girl judges smiled dutifully. Except for Jane Seymour — Live and Let Die’s Solitaire — who seemed to have other things on her mind. “I can drive stick,” she mused. “Maybe I should be Bond.”

Neel Shah

On Delta Airlines’ Secret Service