ME: “OK guys, put your shoes in these bins…”
WIFE: “Here’s my purse.”
ME: “Got it…and that thing you’re clutching?…”
ME: “Is that your homeopathic roll? I think they’re going to want that to go though the X-ray machine…”
WIFE: “I don’t want it to go though, it might damage the remedies.”
ME: “…OK…that makes sense I guess.”
WIFE: “I’ll explain it to them.”
ME: “Hm.” (concerned face)
(We shuffle forward as a family towards the TSA security checkpoint, eyeing the body-scanner warily)
WIFE: (whispering) “What’s our game plan if they try and send us through the body-scanner?”
WIFE: “Shh!” (whispering) “Not so loud.” (glancing at TSA agents)
ME: (now whispering) “…well I don’t know…they don’t seem to be sending kids through there.”
WIFE: (whispering) “I don’t want anyone going in the body-scanner.”
ME: (still whispering) “I think if you refuse they just go old school and strip-search you…”
ME: (whispering) “I guess we’ll cross that bridge when we get there.”
(We finally arrive at the metal detectors, just next to the full-body scanner)
TSA Guy: (bored voice) “Everything in the bins please..”
ME: “Yes Sir.”
WIFE: (winning smile) “I don’t want these to go though the x-ray.”
TSA Guy: (frowning) “What is it?”
WIFE: (using homeschooling voice) “They’re homeopathic remedies!”
TSA GUY: (deeper frowning, takes possession of homemade roll of glass bottles)
WIFE: “They’re just, it’s just sugar pellets…they’re sensitive to x-rays.”
TSA GUY: (to me) “Go through please.” (and walks away to do various contact tests on my wife’s contraband, searching for gunpowder residue)
(each of us pass the the metal detector unscathed, no body-scan required)
NEW TSA GUY: (to me) “Sir, please step to the side.”
ME: (startled, trying to put belt and shoes back on) “What?”
NEW TSA: “Over here, step to the side.”
ME: “Um, OK.” (glancing back at valuables in bin, now unattended)
TSA: (looks me in the eye) “I am going to manually pat you down. Do you have any sharp objects on you?”
ME: “What? Why?”
TSA: “Please spread your legs and hold your arms out like this” (mimicking the open body position I was to compliantly assume, or, perhaps, otherwise be subject to the body-scanner.)
I can hear the scanner humming ominously behind me, with it’s cancer inducing rays pummeling the body of an extremely old lady. “She doesn’t have much time left,” I whisper to myself.
I assume the position requested and he starts his groping of my person. Only moving my eyes, I look over to see my wife getting a similar pat down from a burly looking TSA woman.
Eventually they release us, having dutifully neutralized what they must have considered vague some form of ‘hippy’ threat to the FDA.
ME: “Well that was fun.”
WIFE: “Do you want to travel without our remedies?”
I take too long to answer.
NEXT TIME, ON THE CRUNCHY DUNGEON:
DISCLAIMER – We like the TSA and are thankful that they do their job so that we can all fly in relative safety. Please do not body-scan us because of this post.
Anything but the body-scan.