Well, I’m finally home for a couple of days. Man, I’ve seen more of our country this month than I really care about. Of course, I’ve had to see it from about 30,000 feet up.
Now, as you know, I travel quite a bit, but that’s usually in my truck. Oh, every once in a while, I’ll have to fly somewhere, but that’s not that often for me.
I really don’t mind flyin’, though. Well, actually the only thing I really like about it is the take off and landin’. The rest is usually pretty borin’.
I used to like to hang around waitin’ for my plane. The airport is a great place to people watch, you know. Like I said, I used to enjoy it. Now that there is heightened security, I spend more time standin’ in line than people watchin’.
Up until a couple of days ago, the extent of my experience with the airport security was just puttin’ the usual junk in the X-ray machine, and walkin’ through the metal detector. But this last flight was a little different.
Now, when I travel on a plane, I usually check my bags, except for my purse. Yep, you heard me right, I said purse. It’s not really a purse; it’s a canvas and leather bag that is virtually indestructible.
It’s been all over with me, includin’ that trip to Africa I took last year. Man, it is tough. It’s what I carry my junk in. Now, when I say junk, I’m talkin’ about important stuff. I carry the book that I’ll be readin’ on the plane.
I carry a handful of Tootsie Rolls, ‘cause they don’t feed you much on the plane anymore. I carry my Juicy Fruit gum. Man, I can’t make it without Juicy Fruit. I carry my hearin’ aids, just in case I actually get to sit by somebody worth talkin’ to. And, last but not least, I carry an extra pair of drawers --- you know, underwear.
This is so that if my luggage doesn’t make it to wherever I’m goin’; at least I’ll have one change of underwear. Oh, there may be a few other odds and ends in my purse, but nothin’ of any importance.
Anywho, I had to go to Phoenix, Ariz. last week and on the way back I had to change planes at DFW for my last leg to Tyler. I didn’t have much time between when my plane landed and the next one took off, so I had to huff and puff to get to the gate in time to board. I already had a boardin’ pass, so I didn’t have to stand in line at the ticket counter.
Just as I walked up, a lady announced that they were boardin’ the plane to Tyler. She also mentioned that whoever was in seat 5B needed to go over to the makeshift security area.
“Ha,” I thought. “I feel for that poor sap.” Then I looked at my ticket. That poor sap was me. Now, the first thought in my head was, did I have a knife on me? I always carry a knife. That is, up until they made you stop carryin’ them on planes.
I really knew that I didn’t have one on me, but you know how your mind can think of all sorts of things just to make you worry. Well, I patted myself down to make sure and made my way over to the area.
“Are you 5B?” the lady asked. I showed her my ticket. Then she smiled at me. Now, I really wouldn’t call it a friendly smile. In fact, the smile was sort of scary. Then she started puttin’ on rubber gloves.
“Are you ready to be checked out?” She asked as she snapped a glove on.
“Well, ma’am,” I swallowed thinkin’ about my last physical. “Just where are goin’ to check?”
She rolled her eyes, and then pointed at my purse. “Would you mind if I look in your bag?” she asked.
“Whew,” I said, now knowin’ I wouldn’t have to turn my head and cough. “This thing?” I asked, pointin’ at my purse. “I ain’t got nothin’ in there but my book and stuff.”
“Would you mind if I look in your bag?” she repeated a little more firmly.
“No ma’am” I said. “I don’t mind.”
“Do you have any sharp objects in here,” she said as she undid the buckle.
“Sharp as in what?”
“You know, knives, scissors, ice picks, things like that?”
“Do you have a lot of people taking ice picks on planes?” I asked.
“Sir,” she sighed. “Do you have any sharp objects?”
“No, ma’am,” I said quickly. Then she started pullin’ stuff out of my bag.
“Whoa,” I said. “You ain’t gonna pull that out here in front of everybody, are you?”
“Is there a problem?” she questioned.
“Yes ma’am,” I said. “I got my drawers in there.”
“My drawers,” I repeated.
“Sir,” she said. “I am just doin’ my job.” Then she pulls out a pair of fingernail clippers. “What’s this?”
“Those are finger nail clippers,” I said. “You want me to show you how they work?”
“I know how they work,” she said.
“Then why’d you ask me what they were?”
“Sir, you cannot carry these on board.”
“Not even if I promise not to clip my finger nails?”
“These are on the list of prohibited items.”
“You’re kiddin’,” I said. “What’cha figure I’m gonna do, clip somebody to death?” She just looked at me. It was just like one of those looks that my wife gives me all the time.
Then she pulled out my drawers. Now, I don’t usually wear wild underwear, but the ones I was carryin’ in my bag were some paisley boxers that my wife Janet had bought me.
The lady just didn’t pull them out; she stretched them, held them up to the light, and then tossed them on the table. I looked around, and everybody was watchin’ and snickerin’. I grabbed the drawers and stuck them in my pocket. The lady just looked at me.
Finally she finished with the bag.
“Stand with your arms out,” she said. I did as I was told and she went over me with her metal detector wand. When she finished, I started to grab my bag.
“Wait sir,” she said. “Do you mind if I touch you?”
“Uh, where?” I asked. I received another one of those looks.
“Sir,” she said through gritted teeth, “Do you mind if I touch you?”
“Heck no,” I said. I could tell she was getting’ a little irritated.
She stood behind me and started feelin’ me. I ain’t kiddin’. She started at my shoulders, worked her way down my arms, and down my back. When she grabbed my waist, I jumped.
“Sorry,” I said. “I’m a little ticklish.”
Then she went down one leg and up the other, squeezin’ them all the way up and down.
When she had finished, she said, “Thank you sir,” and she handed me my bag.
“No,” I said and I raised my eyebrows a couple of times. “Thank you.”
“Would you like me to call security, sir” she asked.
“I thought you were security?” I said.
“I mean the ones with the guns,” she smiled.
“That’s OK,” I said. “I’ve really got to get goin’, but thanks for the once over?”
“NEXT!” she yelled through clenched teeth.
Man, do I have a way with women or what?