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Funny Comment From Tsa Screener


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True story...


Last night when flying out of Sacramento after a weekend family visit, I was carrying my Edgley through airport security. As expected, the X-ray screeners always look a little perplexed, so I told them:


"Its a concertina, like a small accordion".


The TSA screener, who was training another one, says: "Did you hear what I told the trainee?"


Me: "No"


TSA Screener: "I told him, I don't know what it is, but it doesn't look like something you could use to kill a pilot".


Me: "You haven't heard me play..."



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I had a similar experience taking my marcus anglo into Ireland at easter a couple of years ago. I hadn't even thought about security problems and of course, in it's 'flight box' it wouldn't x-ray. I was busy seeing my backpack through and told the man on the counter that it was 'only a concertina, it's not locked, you can open it'. I'm fairly sure he expected it to explode!

Mind you, we had to empty my husband's backpack completely to get out his contact lens case (metal). The laugh being on us, when we got to Dublin and found that athough he had packed the case, he had forgotten to put the lenses in ... <_<

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When I was working in silicon valley one summer, I dropped by Lark in the Morning to check it out, and saw my first low whistle. This thing was a single piece of aluminum pipe with holes, the fipple being part of the pipe.


My first thought was, "jeez, that looks like a half-hearted attempt to disguise a weapon as a musical instrument by putting some holes in it. I absolutely have to try bringing that through an airport."


I did end up buying that low whistle, and I did travel a lot that summer, always keeping the thing in my carry-on to see how the TSA would react. I felt a bit upset that nobody ever raised an eyebrow as it passed through the x-ray machine. By the end of my job, in August 2001, I was convinced that I could bring a pistol in my carry-on bag and the guy manning the x-ray wouldn't even blink.



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(snip)......athough he had packed the case, he had forgotten to put the lenses in ... <_<


It's been about like that for me, lately! Though, no flying or airports involved, here. My concertina and I shall stick to driving (..me, anyway), conserving on gas, of course, and the only 'security agent' we need to get past is my new friend, Dolly Jane.


Dolly Jane (named by me :blink: ) is my Onstar robot-lady that came with my new car! (Finally had to get a new one, after about ten years.) Onstar is a driver-assistant wireless emergency service, and includes a car phone, depending on the type of package deal. ('Dolly' because she's a robot, and 'Jane' after Jane Jetson, the space-age cartoon goddess from the 1960s.)


Anyway, my story is this...


I'd had a well-liked prepaid USA SIM-card cell phone for a few years until recently, which was cheaper than using regular wireless service or any other phone.


My husband had to go to the emergency room on Sunday night a week ago, and by early Monday morning, I was just about a robot, myself -- VERY tired. I put my cell phone on 'silent,' and thus lost track of it, since I couldn't call it as usual to find it. Even after coming home from the hospital, I spent more than an hour looking for it, drove back down to the all-night store where I might have dropped it, etc..


So, in the morning, I finally did find it, by callling it again anyway and noticing a flashing light from underneath the popcorn-popper. Why I put my cell phone there is a mystery to me.


So, I figured I'd add more security to my phone, so if I lost it again I wouldn't have to worry about any personal info -- anyone's private phone numbers, etc., having been handed-out. I proceeded to add a new PIN number to my phone, and managed to block my SIM card, making my phone useless! I think there's a PUK number somewhere...somewhere in my house....and if I ever find it, I might be able to save my phone number, but....


for now, it'll be me, my concertina, and Dolly Jane, I guess. And I think I should stay outta the sky! :lol:

Edited by bellowbelle
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For several years, I've been alerting the screeners to the unusual item they're about to see as the bag disappears into the machine. "They're bagpipes", or "it's a concertina" usually gets the instrument thru X-ray without having to open it up.


But it occurs to me that this is just the sort of Jedi mind trick that a more nefarious type might employ to pre-condition a screener to an item that really should be inspected.


So while I'm glad I don't have TSA folks manhandling my instruments every time I go thru security, I don't have a warm fuzzy feeling about the whole process. :unsure:

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The cathedral choir I sing with, occasionally do a concert at a maximum security prison (where we have a captive audience). Previous years, they have been very keen on security and confiscated all pencils and tuning forks (tools of the trade for an acappella singer).

This year, they went over the top and x-rayed the sheet-music (for concealed razor blades?).

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Just because not everybody has had these experiences doesn't mean they don't happen.

And just because someone tells them doesn't guarantee that they did happen. Now I'm not claiming that any particular incident did not happen, but some of the best stories are fiction, and some folks do like to entertain. (I particularly like Mike Agranoff's tale of the card game with the devil. Very convincing! :))

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This is ancient history (1984) but true.


In November of 1984 Shady Grove toured cities in Spain and France. Lovely experience. At the boarder crossing going into France, the officials on both sides just waved us through (an innocent age). I was a bit miffed because there would be no stamp in my passport to show off. On our way back two weeks later at 2:00 a.m. the French again waved us through. The Spanish side was another story:


The Guardia Civil manned this post and wanted us to get out of the car, pull the bass lashed to the roof down and see what was in those cases in the trunk. Perhaps they thought we were drug dealers (our shoulder length hair and long beards didn't help). We ended up giving them a rousing rendition of Old Joe Clark at a blazingly fast tempo that had more to do with my nerves than anything else. They smiled and waved us through and still didn't stamp my passport :angry:.


Those leather tricorn hats and the uzzi's were too much for me.

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