Note: Parts of this story has been obfuscated for your protection.
Well, I’d just like to say that I can check get interrogated by a TSA agent off my bucket list.
A couple of weeks ago, Babe, Baby E, my sis, and I flew to Vermont so that E could meet the one and only “Diz,” her 97-year-old great-grandmother.
But this story isn’t about the actual visit, which was in fact fantastically lovely and if I tell you about it I’ll get all weepy and I’ve already reached my tear quota for this month and it’s only the 19th. Typical.
This is a travel story. The proverbial harrowing travel tale.
On the day of our departure, we awoke at 3:30a.m. and sluggishly made our way to the airport a half hour later. When we arrived at the airport, we made our way straight to the security line since we had printed out our boarding passes the night before. While we were in line the three of us had a conversation about something related to me being a moron. We exited the line. One of us was crying and on the verge of vomiting. We talked to a ticketing agent. We ran back to the line. It had doubled. I asked a nice-looking couple if we could cut in front of them because we were going to miss our flight and they kindly obliged. One of us was still crying about to hurl.
We finally got to the front of the line where I told the security man I that I’m an idiot. Because I am. And as we all know idiots do idiotic things, especially when they have to rely on things like their idiotic pea-sized brains. Before I knew it, my unbrainy brain and I were following a tall and intimidating TSA agent to a corner of the security area. He looked at me like he. meant. business. After lecturing me for several minutes about what a serious offense it would be if I lied to him, he informed me he would be calling somebody who would ask him some questions about me, which he would relay to me, and I would then answer each with the TRUTH. Yes, truthiness, got it. He informed me these questions would be of an “unorthodox” nature.
My mind raced while he made the phone call. Unorthodox questions, I thought. Hmm. A scenario quickly played out in my head…
TSAMAN: Ma’am, when was the, uh, last time you engaged in coitus with your husband?
fuckingmoron: Um, probably 8 or 10 or 15 days ago, christ, we’re parents, lay off, *ahem* Sir.
TSAMAN: How many diapers did your daughter soil yesterday and, if she defecated, what was the consistency of the stool?
fuckingidiot: I don’t know, like, 6? She produced one pretty good-sized, hard-as-a-rock shit containing several flax seeds among other unidentifiable objects around 3:30pm.
TSAMAN: Who will win the upcoming U.S. presidential election?
fuckingtwit: Well, that’s easy: If some of the peeps who rallied and voted for Obama in 2008 don’t get off their lazy asses and vote this time because they think Obama’s a shoe-in or they just don’t give a flying shit anymore or they blindingly blame Obama for the sluggish economy, and if enough voting Repubs wish to revert back to the same, disastrous policies that got us into this steaming, stinking shitpile in the first place like budget-busting tax cuts for the wealthy and free rein for Wall Street to write its own rules, then Shit, I mean Mitt Romney will be the next president of the United States.
“Okay, ma’am, are you ready for your questions?” I took a deep breath. “I swear to tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth, so help me Gaia.” Okay, I didn’t really say that but let’s just pretend I did.
“What is your current address and how long have you lived there?” I answered with 100% truthiness and he relayed my answer to the man on other the end of the line. “What was your previous address and how long did you reside there and with whom?” I answered with 100% truthiness and he relayed the answer. “Where did you live before your last address?” Shite, I thought. “Um, I can’t remember the house number because I lived there for only five months and it was a disgusting shithole that I’ve been trying to block out of my mind since, but I know the street name,” which I stated. He relayed the information. “Ma’am, did anybody else live at your previous address with you besides your husband and baby? “No,” I answered. He told the mystery man on the phone my answer. He paused and then asked me the same question again sternly while looking at me straight in the eye like he was expecting me to break down and admit I’d been harboring a terrorist. “Um, no, I swear,” I answered with as much confidence I could muster. *long pause* *heart racing* *tears welling* “Okay, ma’am, you’re good to go.”
Unorthodox questions?! Now, with all due respect, sir, as Inigo explained to Vizzini, I do not think that word means what you think it means. Here I am ready to tell you my deepest, darkest secrets and you ask me where I’ve lived for the last five years?! Totes boring, dude, totes boring.
We raced through security and ran to our gate where the airline agents were on their way to locking the door, which, thereby, would have locked us out of the plane, which, consequently, would have fucked things up for us big time, which, hence, would have caused me to collapse into a heavy heap of heartbreak and hopelessness on the gross airport carpet.
We boarded the plane panting and sweating while everybody stared because we were those people. We vigorously stuffed our bags into seemingly non-existent spaces in the crowded overhead bins because as we all know the airlines make you pay for checked baggage so everyone brings their over-stuffed suitcases on as carry-ons, and plunked down in our seats.
You may not know this, but I hate flying. I know, I know, everybody hates flying. But I really hate flying and every time I do, it gets a bit worse. The only person who hates being in an over-crowded winged tube (flying way too high up in the sky where we wanna cry cuz we could die) even more than me is my sister. But she’s lucky b/c her “doc” prescribed her special feel-good pills and Mrs. T’s bloody mary mix and itty-bitty bottles of mediocre vodka, and she doesn’t have an over-tired elfin who wants milkies from her boobies every five f-ing minutes.
About an hour into the flight E’s diaper had to be changed, so I went back to the bathroom area and, of course, none of the fucking
tiny little, itty-bitty pee closets bathrooms have a changing table. Wtf?! This was a newer plane. All newer planes should have changing tables. For the love of god, somebody think of the children!
A flight attendant who was in the little kitchenette in the back of the plane heard me telling Babe there were no changing tables in any of the restrooms. She said, “Oh don’t worry, honey, you can change her on my lap.” I thought she was kidding so I chuckled uncomfortably. “No, I’m serious, come here.” She went into a restroom, sat on the toilet lid and motioned me to follow. She told me her name was Caroline, and that she’s got tons of grandchildren so this wasn’t the first time she’d acted as a changing table. I hesitatingly placed E on her lap while silently chanting, Please don’t pee on Caroline, please don’t pee on Caroline. She talked to E in a sweet, grandmotherly tone while I quickly changed her.
Caroline, if you’re out there, you rock. I’m sure some people treat you like shit because they’re miserable little a-holes and think flight attendants are sitting targets just waiting to be shat on, but you were a shiny little gem, and I’d gladly punch anyone who’s mean to you right in the neck. And if you ever feel the urge to inflate the emergency slide after a passenger stands up before the plane’s completed its taxi to the gate, and gives you lip when you kindly ask him to sit back down, I say: Do it and don’t ever look back, Caroline.
The way home was pretty uneventful but it truly was the l o n g e s t d a y o f o u r l i v e s because we sat on the runway for over an hour before the 5 1/2 hour flight. Poor little booboo has never known such exhaustion. She fussed and she cried and she writhed and she thrashed and she literally sucked me dry. Luckily for her and my nipples, she found some solace in an itty-bitty Finnish friend…