Friday, October 23, 2009

Why I'm Nervous to Fly

I think I'm a pretty good looking guy. Distinguished, regal... maybe a little rough and rugged. Maybe a little TOO Rough and Rugged?

If someone were to ask me why I would be nervous to travel to China, it would not be the foreign country, the armed guards, the language barrier, the "food/water" issues, the jet lag, the lost luggage... nay, it would not be ANY of those things...

A Few Flights ago...
Me: Yup, that's right. Going to Vancouver for work.
Airport Security Slacker (ASS): Uh-huh. Walk though slowly please.
Me: Sure.
Damned Machine Hates Me (DMHM): BEEP BEEP BEEP!
ASS: Sir, back up and try to walk though again.
Me: Sure.
ASS: Sir, do you have anything metal in your pockets?
Me: No.
ASS: Are you wearing a belt?
Me: Ah, yes.
ASS: Take off your belt please and walk through again.
Me: Sure.
ASS: Get Bubba! We've got a Pat Down! WHOOOOOO!!!!
Me: Damn. Not again.

Many Weeks Later...
Me: Yup, going to Winnipeg.
ASS: Uh-huh. Walk though slowly please.
Me: Sure.
ASS: Sir, back up and come though again.
Me: Sure.
ASS: Sir, are do you have anything metal in your pockets?
Me: No.
ASS: Are you wearing a belt?
Me: Nope! I put it through the machine.
ASS: Step over here sir, undo your pants... and take off your shoes...
Me: Damn.

A few Weeks Later...
Me: Yup, going to Toronto!
ASS: Uh-huh. Walk though slowly please.
Me: Just so you know, the machine is going to BEEP BEEP BEEP on me.
ASS: Uh-huh.
Me: Yea, um, I think it dosn't like me.
ASS: Uh-huh. Did you empty your pockets?
Me: Yes.
ASS: Remove your belt?
Me: Yes.
ASS: Remove your shoes?
Me: Yes.
ASS: Well, you should be fine then.
Me: Sure.
Me: Oh you have GOT to be KIDDING ME!
Me: Damn.

Another Few Weeks Later...
Me: Yup, going to Vancouver again. Work. Yes, I will walk though slowly. But before I do, look, I've emptied my pockets, here is my belt, and my shoes... and you know what, here are my glasses as well.
ASS: Uh-huh. Walk though slowly please.
DMHM: ... silence ... absolute beautiful silence!
Me: YES!!!
ASS: Sir, is this your bag.
Me: Uh, yes.
ASS: What is this in your bag? *points to a rather dangerous looking blade on the X-RAY screen*
Me: Uh... I dont... know.
ASS: Did you ever leave your bag alone?
Me: No, we've grown pretty close over the years. I think my bag has an attachment disorder. Dosn't like to be left alone.
ASS: Uh-huh. BUBBA!!!
Me: Damn.
... some time later ...
Me: Can I have my bag back yet?
ASS: Nope. We're cutting it open.
Me: WHAT?!
ASS: You've hidden a blade in the inside lining of your bag. We're cutting it out.
Me: No I haven't! Look! *I take out a folder from my back* Run the bag through the scanner again.
ASS: *runs it through the scanner* Hmmmmm... the blade is gone.
Me: Right. See, my file folder here, it has a metal clip on the inside! Thats what you were seeing on the screen.
ASS: Well, there could still be a blade in there.
Me: Oh c'mon! I'm holding the blade in my hand!
ASS #2: He has a blade?!?! BUBBAAAAA!!!!
Me: Damn.

A few Weeks Later...
Me: Yup, returning to Canada. Yea, I was here for work.
British ASS: Uh-huh. Walk though slowly please.
Me: Sure.
British DMHM: ... silence ...
B-ASS: Thank you sir... have a nice day.
Me: What? Thats it? You don't wanna call Bubba?
B-ASS: Bubba... sir?
Me: I didn't set off any bells... alarms... nothing went BEEP BEEP BEEP?
B-ASS: No sir.
Me: So I can go?
B-ASS: Yes, sir. I would prefer it if you did indeed ... go.
Me: Wow. Thats GREAT! You British ASSes are so much nicer than the Canadian ASSes I have to deal with all the time.
* starts walking down the tunnel towards the aircraft *
Wow... I got through security... and no problems! Yay!
That was nice.
This is what it must feel like to be a cute white woman... they never get stopped... what ho?
Is someone yelling?
Yes... someone IS yelling.
Oh look!
2 B-ASSes charging towards the airplane... and they look quite MAD.
I wonder who the poor ciminal is wh... oh whats, this... they seem to be heading my way!
Oh I should move out of the way...
Why are they yelling at me to "stop moving"?!?!
Me: Damn.
* sometime later*
Me: Look, I've really enjoyed my stay here in England. And I really do appreciate you dumping all of my bags out here in the middle of the airport floor... but my plane is leaving now, and I'm missing my boarding call.
B-ASS: Uh-huh. You can go.
Me: Great. Um... do you want to help pick up all my stuff you've dumped and strewn around the floor?
B-ASS: Good Day sir.
Me: Damn.

Now, I've complained about this to my family and friends time and time again... and they laugh and think its funny and that I exaggerate the whole situation... sadly, I don't. The last time me, the wife and 3 kids traveled to Winnipeg by air, it happened again... The Wife just took the Kids and ran off ahead so they didn't have to wonder what the heck is Bubba doing to Dad?! But they still were asking "Whats happening to Daddy? Where is Dad?"

On the next trip, when leaving Winnipeg, my Dad dropped me off at the airport, and watched while I went through the ASSes Lair... and once again, I got the Royal Pat Down. My Dad called me once I landed in Ottawa just to see what that was all about, cuz he hadn't seen people pulled out of a line like that before ("Oh nothing Dad, thats just normal for me").

Sadly, its just the way I travel. I donno what it is.

Maybe I look like a criminal? I donno. But I think it has to do with my last name - apparently, it is a popular Northern Iraqi name. Not that we racially profile people here in Canada tho... Oh no. Ah well.

So, am I worried about Traveling to China? Sure. But not for the reasons expected. :-)

But hey, if I DO end up in a Chinese Prison somewhere in outer Mongolia... make sure you guys write me.

How do you say "I'm not Bubba's type!" in Mandarin anyway? :-)


  1. Oh Adrian that is hilarious. Not for you obviously but what a crazy time that must be for you. I don't blame you for not wanting to go to airports. I hope it without a hitch when you go to and come back from China. I will keep this in mind and prayer for you:-)

  2. Adrian - I wanted to tell you how much I enjoy reading your blog posts. They are always good for a laugh...and an entirely new perspective of this adoption process! If you do end up in Mongolia, we will come visit while we are there to get our girl next year. We'll make sure to bring some whiskey. :)

    ~ Melissa (Roberta's bloggy friend, Yahoo Summer LID Group)

  3. LOL!! Hmmmm... I actually like your longish hair and all, but maybe you could try a shorter haircut for this important trip? The clean-cut look can go a long way, especially combined with politeness. And maybe a Croation Soccer Jersey? And just so you know - the Ottawa airport does seem to have their equipment turned up to max when compared to other airport securities. That's the only place I have ever been screened for explosives, and it happens EVERY time! And I live in the US...