Jul 16 2007

Please, Let the Stupidity End

They confiscated my toothpaste at the airport on the way to Portland. The conversation went something like this:

TSA agent, removing my toothpaste from my plastic toiletries bag: “This is too large to take in.”

Me: “But it’s only a third full.”

TSA: “The tube says it’s 6.4 ounces, and you can only take three ounces in.”

Me: “I am taking less than three ounces in. One-third of 6.4 ounces isn’t even 2.2 ounces.”

TSA: “The container says 6.4, which is greater than three.”

Me: “But the container is can’t even hold 6.4 anymore, it’s all squished up.”

TSA: “Container says it’s 6.4.”

Me: “So if I get a container that says three ounces, can I squeeze the two ounces out and put it in the new three ounce tube?”

TSA: “No, the toothpaste as been confiscated.”

Me: “It’s right there in your hand.”

TSA: “Are you looking for trouble?”

Me: “No, I’m looking for clean teeth.”

More TSA goons walking up behind me: “Just move along if you don’t want trouble.”

Not wanting to miss the bachelor party I’m headed to, I surrender my toothpaste. However, it made me think of a few things I probably won’t even get around to trying, even if I was stupid enough to do so:

Start up a company that sells bottles and tubes pre-marked with understated sizes. After all, all that matters is how big the label says it is.

Or, it’s not actually the size of the container, it’s the capacity of the container. Next time, I could bring all my liquids and gels in transparent condoms inflated to the size of my forearm, but with only three ounces of actual contents. When they try to confiscate them, just let the extra air our and retie them. (And, just watching a TSA agent’s face while having to confiscate giant inflated condom with some unknown white gelatinous liquid in it would be interesting.)

Or, after walking successfully through security with all the little three ounces bottles of sunscreen, shampoo, toothpaste, etcetera, that have been dutifully sealed in a one-liter exterior baggy, sit at the end of the conveyor belt and empty all the little bottle into the one baggy. Preferably then mixing slowly with a wooden spoon.

I noticed they didn’t confiscate my spare ziplock baggies that I had in my bag. (I keep them in my travel bag for general emergencies, like storing wet socks after getting caught in a rainstorm.) As an extension to the last, what if, while in line for the checkpoint, I take out a huge bottle of sunscreen, dutifully empty it into a series of three ounce bottles, throw out the bottle, and then proceed to empty them all back into a ziplock bag on the other side of security?

I mean, how stupid is this all? And I don’t just mean, “damn, this is really annoying.” Think of all the resources we’re allocating to this that could be used for improving the world. This is like having to do busywork instead of actually learning something – a very poor use of our time, energy, and money.

Jul 12 2007

Family Scandal

We all knew my grandmother was adopted. The fake birth certificate to a Singaporean salesman wasn’t quite convincing enough. Now, it’s been disclosed to us that, in the town my grandmother was raised, “the whole town knew” that she was the illegitimate daughter of Zane Grey.

Cool. I’ll take that.

Jul 11 2007

Costa Rica, from Lanaea

Jul 3 2007

This is Abby

Jul 3 2007

SD Fair

Nat and Nae

Nat and Nae

Modeling Purses

Modeling Purses