There's been a lot of talk swirling around the Flying Star lately--Confusion over policy enforcement, a new vice president hired on from out-of-state and two enormous locations in the oven (including a proposed adjoined 10,000-square-foot shopping center) are a few of the things you're talking about.
The No. 1 item I've heard about lately is the company's apparent shift in attitude toward tattoos. It looks like some tattooed employees are now required to wear long-sleeved black shirts (and in some cases, turtleneck sweaters) under their normal work shirts. Others are getting by with just a sweatband or Ace bandage.
One heavily tattooed former employee tells the Alibi he came to work at the Flying Star because he thought he fit the company's culture of a diverse, professional staff. He says he understands that not all tattoos are acceptable in a customer service setting, but there was never a clear delineation as to what was or was not “tasteful,” or how much inked skin should be covered.
Because one tattoo on his forearm was deemed “inappropriate”--a scantily-clad pin-up girl wrapped in an American flag, similar to one painted on the plane of his great uncle who died in WWII--he was required to wear an additional shirt with long sleeves to cover all of his pieces. He says he felt singled out from the rest of the crew, which made him increasingly uncomfortable at work. With summer close on the heels of the extra black clothing policy, sticking around wasn't in his best interest anymore.
There's no doubt the Flying Star is changing these days, and these issues are just some of its telltale growing pains. You can get a taste of it in this week's “Letters” section of the Alibi, including a response from Flying Star and Satellite co-owner Jean Bernstein.
Looking ahead, Bernstein says the new 7,000-square-foot location in Corrales should be ready around July. The home of the new "Acequia de Corrales" shopping center is at the intersection of Coors and Alameda.
“It is looking wonderful,” she says. “We are working with the Mid Rio Grande Conservancy District to link to the proposed state bike trail--if possible.” There's been no word yet on a proposed flagship Flying Star in Bernalillo, but just give it some time. They'll get there eventually.