Travel Troubles

By the way, I’ve never been happier to be home. It’s the little things — like using a mouse and a real keyboard. Unfortunately getting here took the better part of 19 hours. They actually had the hood up on the plane that was supposed to fly me overseas, which was a long delay. I overheard someone say “if they get out the duct tape I’m staying here.” The connecting flight in DC was very missed, but after 45 minutes in line I got the last seat on a direct flight to SFO leaving in about two hours. Then I spent more than two hours in line trying to get a boarding pass and through security, the height being my ticket was once again tagged SSSS which mean I got the “special” treatment at security with my flight set to take off in 8 minutes. (I swear I’m on some sort of list.)

The very worst was I had bought some matchbooks for my sister (who collects them) and they were in my suitcase. The guy asked how many there were and I said “two” because that’s how many I bought at souvenir places. He found another (a free one from a hotel) and another TSA guy came up and said “which two of these do you want?” and took the third one away from me. I was shocked, and said “Are you going to keep that?” and he replied “Well you’re not getting it back.” I stumbled away to the shuttle and ran to the gate, 10 minutes after it was supposed to leave and all the doors were closed but luckily the plane hadn’t left yet. I finally got in around 1 AM and it was too late for BART so I just took a cab. Now I’m home and warm and dry and clean and being back after travelling so intensely makes it seem that much better. Time to disappear under some sheets…

17 thoughts on “Travel Troubles

  1. By the way, I’ve never been happier to be home. It’s the little things — like using a mouse and a real keyboard.

    You have no idea how much I agree. I would be glad not to be the odd one.

  2. [Let's see if text doesn't get truncated this time, a preview would have helped]

    By the way, I’ve never been happier to be home. It’s the little things — like using a mouse and a real keyboard.

    You have no idea how much I agree. I would be glad not to be the odd one.

  3. I had the quadruple S experience a few weeks ago (travelling back from SXSW) – when I asked why, they told me it was because I’d changed flights at the airport. That’s probably the same reason for you, not because you meet any specific terrorist checklist. :)

  4. My friend’s daughter is on some sort of security list and gets ‘special treatment’ whenever she checks in. Not sure why, it may be her evil hello kitty backpack or maybe her way-too-bright-to-fly crayons.

  5. Hi.

    I think what you did was cool.

    People used to have to climb the search engine mountain, and sell their products accordingly.

    Unfortunately, (IMO) due to Google’s PR weighting, the ‘mountain’ has become more of a ‘spire’ – impossible to climb, and pandering to only the rich and famous elite sites out there.

    Thousands of smaller sites have been no longer able to survive commercially due to the exclusionary PR methods. In other words, you do the work, but ya dont get paid.

    Every time I search for anything online, I get absolutely irrelevant pages from Microsoft, About.com, NY Times, etc. cropping up, just because those sites are big and have high PR.

    You highlight the fact that real webmasters need to eat, and people all over the world are forced into desperate measures. You’re on the most successful ones, and all you can buy are capuccinos. – but spare a thought for someone in a poor country, to whom a capuccino is the price of a meal…. who genuinely can no longer feed his family due to a dramatic drop in attentions from Google since the Florida update.

    Why should you care what spams their index? They created the link monster in the first place, and if their system wasn’t fundamentally flawed, it should have been filtered automatically.

    I dont support Spamming myself, I think there are other ways to succeed, but I understand how and why you did it.

    Enjoy the attention, because you are now a celebrity and you represent thousands of hungry webmasters who no longer can earn a living.

    As far as I’ve heard, they’ve already pulled all your pages.

    So.. whatcha gonna do next?
    Have you checked to see if they’ve penalized your users websites too, for using your software? If they are penalized, you have the instant support of thousands and thousands of people.

  6. Matt: You dirty spammer-types get on that list. I worked it up with my friend who works for DHS. ;)

    Glad you’re home.

    GFM <– would not be concerned by the use of duct tape in most parts of an airplane, actually :)

  7. HAHA! Why should they treat an American other than a normal ‘Old European’ terro… ahm tourist. American Airport Security are some schizophrenic folks.

  8. let’s see if this lets me post, because i’ve been having a hard time doing so the past week… (wtf, all wp-related blog sites — is it the preferences set by firefox or something?) glad that you’re home – you know i’m going to start clambering for some pictures! sounds like the airport people had a stick up their collective ass. i’m not putting effort into this because i bet you, it won’t save.

  9. Hey Matt, thanks for creating WORDPRESS. :) I’m currently residing in Houston. Both my husband and I are at the University of Houston. I must say, you rock. I came across your post, because I’m trying to figure out how to make asides. ;p

  10. Wow… shades of the past… Almost like using the converted WWII German torpedo boat to cross the med to get into Algeria… Yep. Definitely nice to be home.

  11. I hate the new era of airport security. I can’t for the life of me figure out how a lawsuit happy country like America hasn’t already gotten rid of that insanity – confiscating peoples things and not giving them any option to get them back.

    When they confiscate things, I think it should be THEIR freaking problem to get it into the cargo hold or send it to your home. I can’t for the life of me figure out how the hell they can get away with stealing your things right in front of you and you can’t do a damned thing about it. If you tell them where they can stick their ridiculous security check, and show them how completely pointless it is, you will only be even worse off.

    Don’t think things are safe in your suitcase either: American airport security opened up my suitcase last year, took two wallet-chains I had bought and deliberately put in my checked in luggage to avoid having it confiscated.
    They took it from my suitcase, did’t leave a receipt and I had no way of getting it back or get reimbursed. I was furious. Even if it’s only $20-30 worth of stuff, where the hell do they get off just taking my damn stuff?

    It seems that the only way to make sure to get something potentially problematic home with you is to UPS it to yourself.

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