Tag Archives: airport

I Don’t Think I’m Alone on This One…

21 Jan
Borrowed from "The Onion"

Borrowed from “The Onion”

Skimming the news this weekend, an article caught my eye.

“Did you know they’re removing some of the scanners from the airports?” I asked Alan.

“Oh yeah? The invasive scanners?” he clarified. “Not a surprise.”

“Invasive? What do you mean?”

“You know, the ones that show you naked,” he prodded.

I shook my head. “I thought that was a wives’ tale. I mean, they don’t actually show you naked.” I paused. “Do they?”

He nodded. “Do a Google image search. You’ll see.”

I thought he was surely pulling my leg. I mean, I fly ALL the time. There’s no way they’d allow TSA officers to take naked scans of me, would they?

I searched. Images like this came up:

Image Source: http://maxcdn.fooyoh.com/files/attach/images/1097/325/389/001/airport_xray_scanner.jpg

“Are you serious? This is what it really looks like?” I asked, incredulous.

Alan nodded. “You seem freaked out.”

“I am,” I said. “I mean, I didn’t know they could actually see my naked body!”

“What would you have done?” Alan asked.

“Um, probably stood taller. And definitely sucked my tummy in.”

He started laughing. “So what did you think the scan looked like, if not a naked photo of your body?”

“I don’t know,” I said, flipping through more images. “I guess something like this…”

Image Source: http://www.wired.com/images_blogs/threatlevel/2011/07/Screen-Shot-2011-07-20-at-3.48.29-PM.png

At this point, Alan was convulsing. “You thought people were up in arms because they resembled gingerbread men on the scanner?”

Good point.

I hate it when he’s right. 

Where do white people, cheddar cheese, waxing and a noise machine meet? Milwaukee Airport.

16 Jan

I flew out of Milwaukee for the first time Friday morning, and do you know what I learned?

Where was THIS guy? Probably already in Florida.

First, I learned that the Milwaukee airport has a unique population of travelers.

I don’t think I’ve ever stood in line at 6:30am with a whiter, more senior,  more leisure-seeking crowd. And this is including the cruise docks in south Florida.

I wasn’t really paying attention until I noticed the number of people around me publicly clutching their boarding passes and photo IDs. There’s something about that move that smacks of novice. Business travelers have a routine and need their hands free to check email, so they can retrieve key documents in the nick of time, but they aren’t standing in line as if they’re about to undergo immigration.

Once I noticed that detail, I looked up at the faces and was surprised by how, um, WHITE they were. The line was ridiculously long (but fast moving, presumably because of everyone’s diligent preparedness?) so I had a fair population to sample. Using rudimentary physical characteristics, I was only able to easily identify 3 minorities in a line that included at least 100 travelers.

Coming from DC, which really is a melting pot, this struck me as odd. Then I dialed in and realized that most of those pasty faces were paired with white/blue/no hair. Snowbirds, indeed.

Second, I learned a few details about one specific passenger.

Behind me in line were three women in their early forties who were clearly getting away for a girl’s weekend, and they were beyond excited about it. Since they spoke loudly (at a fast clip with a midwestern accent that was more Fargo than Chicago), in the five minutes they were behind me, I learned a few more things.

For starters, one woman is apparently a real jokester. At least, she and her friends think so, but her husband apparently does not. In fact, there is speculation that he doesn’t “get” her sense of humor because he is “anal retentive” and a “real stick in the mud.” (Quotation marks are standing in for the air quotes they used when sharing this information.)

I also learned that someone in that group is hoping NOT for a spa treatment, but a bikini wax, because things have gotten, ahem, unruly. I’m curious to know if any other passengers in the line threw up a little bit of their Starbucks upon learning this detail. I might have, if I had been drinking anything.

I felt close to another discovery about this group, but they happened to look up and realize they were in the wrong line, so they peeled away and went cackling through the airport looking for the other terminal, presumably to bring joy and nausea into the lives of other passengers.

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Tip: Until you’ve mastered the language, try a thesaurus.

11 Jan

I’m as guilty as the next girl of cursing like a sailor. But I’d like to think I generally maintain awareness of my surroundings and tailor my language to my audience. (My parents might disagree.)

This morning in National Airport I had the joy of sitting next to two women in their early 30s who clearly thought they were hot shit (despite wearing sweatpants in public) and wanted to broadcast their badness to the world at large.

It was odd because – aside from their poor fashion – they seemed like reasonably intelligent, articulate women. Until they fired up the profanity.

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