Friday, September 25, 2009

If the Moisturizer Gets Thru the Terrorists Win

Last weekend, I went to a "Mom's Crop Weekend". (A crop is slang for scrapbooking BTW.) I flew down to the LA area and met some friends from down there. We drove to a hotel near Channel Islands and had a very fun, relaxing, foggy weekend. I may write more about it, but it was pretty much what you would expect from a crop weekend. More sleeping than most I think, but mostly I think it was pretty boring, from a blogging perspective.

I did have a little "experience" w/security at the airport. I actually have been debating writing about this. I'm figuring I might end up on some "watch lists" over this (I hope not). On the way down to LA no problem. Extremely uneventful. On the way home, bit different situation. First, I was flying out of Burbank. They had one of those new, fancy scanners. They actually had two lines; one for the new scanner & one for people who didn't want to have the full body x-ray. While in line, a man (late 50s/early 60s I'd guess) apparently opted out on the new version. He didn't realize it meant he needed to go to the next line and the TSA agent ripped him a new one. That right there, gives you an idea of the tone of the area. Tense. I was the one waiting to put my bags on the conveyor belt next while all this was going on. The TSA agent sitting behind the machine admired my bag. Even wanted to know the brand (Vera Bradley) and such. So then I put my bag on the conveyor belt and go through the old style metal detector (they got so backed up while the agent was yelling at the guy, one of the other agents started sending the rest of us through the old style scanner. I get to the end and wait. And wait, and bag is obviously a problem. Grrreat. While I'm watching my tray w/laptop, shoes & liquids comes through. The agent sitting behind machine has now called in reinforcements. Uh oh. I go to pick up my shoes and a third agent has come over to my tray and tells me not to touch anything. Ummm...OoooK. So I'm standing there, barefoot, while she's going through my stuff, and my bag is going back and forth through on the conveyor. The agent realizes I'm not very comfortable standing barefoot and allows me my shoes (flip-flops). She continues scrutinizing my "liquids". I have skin cream medicine, moisturizer, tooth paste and saline solution. I had to buy hair gel in LA & leave it there b/c my brand doesn't come in a small bottle. Finally, she decides the moisturizer is an offending size, (4 oz, instead of 3, even though it obviously isn't full & was OK to bring to LA) and tosses it. My main bag is still having problems and there are like 5 agents looking at the monitor, pointing and discussing now. Finally, one of them brings the bag over to a table and starts to go through it. So all my unmentionables are on this table, which has sides to offer some privacy, but still. My bluetooth ear piece charger was apparently the problem. It was in a side pocket and it had an odd shape on the screen. "On the screen, it looked like it was wrapped in the middle. Like it was trying to be hidden." Once she saw it she said ok. So I after all that I was out a bottle of moisturizer and got to repack my bag. Here's my favorite part; while I was repacking my bag she had to ask what it was. Killed me, since she would've let me go, still not knowing what it was. I'm feeling very safe now.

I know the TSA agents were doing their job. I want that, I want my TSA people to be on the ball & paying attention. But yelling at people who don't really understand what's going on, and trashing people's hair product, etc...isn't going to stop the terrorists. A couple of questions would've made both situations shorter and less stressful. And I would have way more respect for what they're doing, if they would've asked me what it was before letting me go.
And I'm pretty sure none of those terrorists are using moisturizer anyway, have you seen their skin??


Jeff said...

Maybe the terrorists should be using a nice moisturizer - if their skin wasn't so badly chapped they might not be so angry at the world.

Mary333 said...

Funny! Even your profile made me laugh. Not the fibromyalgia part though. I am the mother of a six-year-old and have fibro. It can make life tough.