Visit on Facebook Visit on Linked In Follow on Twitter


Airport Security is Wise to Knife-wielding Grandma

     I lost my little Swiss pocket knife; I got puffed from every angle; and Shelby’s backpack got dumped, searched and returned, but it was a great trip - once we got out of airport security.

     At the security check my grandson Blake and I took our laptops out of their cases and set them in those airport-gray plastic trays while Shelby hefted her backpack up onto the conveyor belt alongside our other carry-on luggage. One by one we walked through the metal Arch of Discovery.

     The Arch of Discovery discovered nothing, but as we reached over to retrieve our carry-ons, a TSA (Transportation Security Agent) guy stepped up and called me aside. Another took Shelby’s backpack and motioned Shelby to wait. Blake – he got no attention. 

     The TSA guy handed off my computer case to an agent behind him and turned to me.

     “Did you bring anything with you that might harm someone?” he asked.

     I looked at him blankly.

     “Maybe something that could cut someone?” he hinted

     Oh! He’s talking about my little Swiss army knife. I thought they changed the rules and you could bring those now.  I ’fessed up.

     Then he turned serious. Did I bring anything else that might cut or harm someone?  I said no, I didn’t. He stared straight through me for thirty seconds and then gave me two choices: I could take the offending instrument outside and come back through security without it, or I could mail it to myself - and come back through security.

     I said, “Keep the knife” – just as I saw another TSA agent dumping out the entire contents of my granddaughter’s backpack onto a table.

     Shelby is eleven years old. Quite a danger to society. But then you never know. I hear her grandmother carries knives around in her computer case…

     Apparently Shelby had nothing that could –um, cut someone – so the agent gave her back her backpack and off we went to enjoy our vacation.

     Which we did - until we checked in for our return flight. Word had been put out to watch for the knife-carrying grandma with two grandchildren. After we checked our bags and headed to the security check-in, a TSA agent blocked our path and directed us to the right.

     “There’s a much shorter line at the security check over there.”

     Couldn’t see a security check. No one else was going that way. But she wasn’t asking.

     We turned into a long empty hallway that eventually led us to double doors with a red-lettered sign: “High Risk Security.”

     Bravely we opened the doors. Another long empty hallway. This one ended at a large room with the standard gray trays and conveyor belt next to a non-standard box-shaped open metal frame.

     A TSA guy invited me into the box. He said my body would be bombarded by puffs of air.

     Gee, thanks for telling me.

     As I was being puffed, I couldn’t help wondering exactly what parts of me were being exposed. Then the puffs stopped and I started to step out of the frame but the TSA guy blocked my exit. He asked if that was an animal.

     What was an animal? What’s he talking about? Oh, he’s looking at my Kokopelli pin.

     “No, it’s a man – it’s a Kokopelli,” I said. He asked what a Kokopelli is and I explained he was a kind of a “Pied Piper” from a Southwestern Indian legend and…

     Why I was standing in a metal frame talking to a security agent about Indian legends?

     Suddenly he stepped aside. I jumped out of that box and Shelby and Blake and I grabbed our carry-ons and ran out of there as fast as we could. 

     It was a great trip. Secure and adventurous and next time I’m leaving the grandkids home. Maybe no one will recognize me at the security check.

Back to Smile-breaks


© Copyright 2015 Sheila Buska All Rights Reserved
Site Design & Maintenance by Dreamwirkz Web Designs, Inc.