Thursday, January 17, 2008

SSSS dos

I had anticipated something could go awry with my travels, so I did some serious research into the identification requirements for gaining access in the secure area of the airport, other wise known as the gate where I need to be in order to get on the plane to go to my business meeting. In Florida.

SSSS means Secondary Security Selection Screening. It is typically placed in code on your boarding pass so you are randomly selected to under go extensive screening. Or you can be flagged for this special screening while standing in the security line.

My license expired, in December. Shortly after this I was told by a Man in Blue that I would not be able to drive my car as the registration had expired. In September. So I was/am a bit of an outlaw. I tried to renew my license online, but evidently you can only renew it online once every other time you nee to renew. Oh. That is stupid. I have yet to make the time to go over to the place that I have to go to renew this license. But the signs that I need to renew this thing have been coming fast and furious.

On Sunday, after our date? Yeah, we got pulled over. We got pulled over because a different Man in Blue ran the plates on my car and it came up as expired registration and license. King Daddy was driving. I pulled out the renewed registration and he gave us the thumbs up on that and then inquired as to whom the car was registered. "Me," I said.
"What is your name?" I responded with my birth name.
"Your license is expired."
"Oh. That must have happened, last month on my birthday."
He responds with, "Good thing you aren't driving. Have a good night."
King Daddy looks at me and says, "Just don't talk. Why did you even say anything?" And then we started laughing. I have a tendency to talk when I should just zip it. It is bad and funny and so we laughed.

So back to the story at hand. The requirements for an ID to get on your plane state, "A government issued identification." I read that in several places. "Ok, I am good," I think to myself. NO where does it say that it needs to be a valid government issued identification. I am no lawyer, but I am sure that cases have been lost on less! So I get to the airport, mildly nervous about my predicament. I breeze right through without incident.

On the way back, however, it is not so easy. I obtained my boarding pass sans incidence. Now the security line. My colleague and I are standing in the security line, chatting away about kids, work, blah blah. He presents his ID an boarding pass and sails right through. The TSA ID checker looks at my ID. Then asks me if I have any other ID with me. Uh oh.
"Is this all you are travelling with for ID?" She inquires.
"I know where you are going with this," I think to myself.
The next thought is, "I am the biggest talker in the world and I would never ever say anything about the fact that the requirements make no reference to the validity of said government issued identification."
"Why?" "What's up?" Sly like a fox, I am not.
"Momma your ID has expired."
"Uh, my ID has expired?" An actress I am not.
"Do you have anything else with you? Birth Certificate? Social Security Card?" She asks.
"Um," I begin to rummage through my wallet. Ah ha! I come up with my Social Security Card, granted it has my maiden name on it.
"I have my SS card, but it has my maiden name, but it is the same social on my license and my SS card." I say.
"You will have to stand over here while I get my supervisor," she says.
She reached for her pen and my boarding pass. She began to scribble on my boarding pass. What is she writing? And then I saw it. And there it is in black ink all over my boarding pass. S S S S.

S S S S. I have to go to be specially screened.

They have to rummage through my luggage. (The luggage that has my clothes in it that I have worn. The gentleman is very kind. "Um, you have to go through all my cloth," he cuts me off. He can see the horror in my face. "We have seen it all, trust me," he says. Without getting to graphic, I will just say that every woman in the world knows the horror I was feeling. All of the clothes that I had worn over the past 2 days was in my luggage. Ok, there? Do you get it now?)
I have to go into some sort of "blower."
Then I have to take my shoes off.
Then I have to walk through a metal detector.
Then a very nice woman rummages through my luggage.
She says the exact same thing as the kind gentleman had told me earlier.
"We have seen it all. You have no idea."
I tell her that I will be blogging about this so keep on telling me everything!
My clogs have been identified by the ION detector to have a questionable substance so they must be run through the x-ray machine. As she finds an x-ray machine that is not in use she says over her shoulder, "At my last job, it was worse." "I could write a book," she says.
"You should start a blog," I wink.
"You are crazy," she says.
And with that I am discharged from my S S S S.

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