Friday, June 22, 2012

On My Way to New England

In just a few hours I'll be on a plane headed to Boston and from there Ryan, who has been mentioned in my blogs many times, will be picking me up and we'll make the drive to Connecticut for a USAC .25 Generation Next race. I'll be flagging and Ryan got talked into being the cameraman. How will he do? You can watch the racing action this weekend on USAC's Ustream page barring some sort of techincle difficulty.

So yes, I'm about to fly but as always I am building up my pre-flight anxiety. Well, it isn't pre-flight but rather security checkpoint fear. I wonder if there is a clinical name for this and if there isn't there should be. Don't get me wrong, I do like feeling safe but at the same time I know I always look like a suspicious person due to lack of eye contact and fidgety behavior.

One thing I have going for me is that I am not in my possession of flags. They're in the USAC trailer that went from Hagerstown last week up to Thompson, CT. Why is this a good thing? One time, in Kansas City, my flags went through the scanner and the agent opened up the bag and asked, "What are these?" I responded with a one word answer, "flags" which didn't seem to appease the agent. He then unfurled the checkered flag and asked, "Sir, what does this represent?" Obviously this person had never seen a race in his life but I began to fear the question because I thought he thought that this flag might have been some sort of rebel symbol and that I was part of some uprising. Thank goodness at the time I didn't have this flag with me at the time as this flag does look the part.

Then, of course, there was last year's trip. If you are new to my blog you should really read that post because it is the epitome of what can go wrong while traveling and the emotions I felt. Oddly enough the part of my computer that was cracked from that journey through TSA last year broke off this morning. A sign of things to come today? I certainly hope not!

It's now less than an hour before I will make the shaky journey through security. I keep telling myself, "just act normal" but this just makes me act more unnatural. I feel the most out of place in the security checkpoint line if that makes sense. I don't know how everyone acts so nonchalant about the whole thing; I mean, people are way too close to everyone else, the line moves at a random pace, and sometimes the metal detector will go off despite no metal on a person (Odd fact: as I walk through the scanner I am thinking, "No whammies, no whammies!" due to that random chance. Odd? Yes. Fun? Yes.) And, should I get the extra round of questioning, how will I respond? How will I keep my composure? It is this fear that scares me the most because when a line of questioning I'm not expecting comes my way I usually lock up.

Despite the fears I will tackle this head on. There's a flagstand waiting for me in Thompson and after this incredible week I can't wait to cap it off with a great race weekend.

1 comment:

  1. I can so relate to those issues at the security gate... I haven't been with an airplane a lot of times yet, but the few times I have, I've been very nervous about the whole security thing. One time I went back from England and didn't know a crème stick also counted as a liquid, so my bag got searched, just to get to that one stick. They cleared out my whole bag in front of everyone and started questioning what was in my bag and what I was doing in the country and things like that.
    I didn't like any of it and just wanted to leave there. The security guard thought of putting me at ease by talking about my harry potter book I had in my bag, but I could only answer in short sentences like 'yea, I'm a harry potter fan...'
    Now every time I have to cross some sort of security line I think about that time that I got that whole ordeal because of that one 5 cm crème stick...