Thursday, January 07, 2010

We Need To Fight This!

Well, by now we've all heard about the guy wearing his lovely explosive diaper there on Christmas Day.
But this foiled terrorist attack has caused all manner of new [and improved?] measures at airports.
While all of this is necessary [I suppose] I suggest that what it will amount to is just a lot of serious delays for normal people like you and me, who keep the explosive properties of our underpants at a level of common flatulence!

I can live with the full pat-down thing.
And even the full body scanners where they see right through your clothes.
What do I care if some guy in another room is looking at a TV screen and saying, "Hey, Jim. Get a load of this one!"
I can live with that stuff.
....... this afternoon I nearly had a cow as I was listening to the radio at work and heard that part of the new measures were that us normal people CANNOT TAKE BOOKS WITH US AS CARRY-ON LUGGAGE!
Say again?
Yes, this is what I heard!
On CBC radio no less -- they even clarified it by saying that you could only take books that were purchased IN the airport AFTER you went through security.
Needless to say, while all [way overpriced] Airport Booksellers were probably applauding, I went into a funk.

No books on an airplane? You can't be serious!
What am I going to DO during the flight? I always read when I'm in the sky. Hell, I always read when I'm.... anywhere!
So, I did a little research immediately after work -- found THIS ARTICLE that seems to clear up the matter a bit... but now I am wondering if the news I heard on the radio is like, newer than the news I just found on the internet.
Has anyone out there heard similar horrific rumors?
The crazy No-Book Law of 2010?
Do I have to resort to... smuggling?

[Back in the Secret Room they're both laughing, but Jim peers closer at his screen....]
"Hey, wait a minute. That's no deformity! That's Anna Karenina!
Call Security!"

Folks, if we cannot take books onboard, the terrorists win!


Michele at Reader's Respite said...

Hiya Cip...well, the only info I can give you is from my first-hand experiences flying between Toronto and the US last week. (Keep in mind, though, as the pilot of said flights, I'm not subjected to the same security limitations, but I did keep my eyes peeled to see what they were doing to my passengers.)

There were NO book confiscations at the Toronto airport. After normal security screening, all of our passengers then had to proceed to a secondary screening point, which was taking care of the excess carryon luggage that wasn't allowed. It didn't seem to be all the chaos that the media was reporting.

I'm guessing things are still in a state of flux...our rules were changing every day there for about 3 days as the TSA tried to make up it's mind what the appropriate knee-jerk reaction would be. (One day we were instructed that none of our passengers could hold any items in their lap for the last hour of flight into the US, the next day, that one was rescinded, and so on and so on).

So if you or your readers have an upcoming flight to the US (although I can't imagine why anyone would voluntarily put themselves through that hell), TAKE YOUR BOOKS WITH YOU. It seems to be okay.

And if it isn't, check and see if I'm your pilot on that flight: I'll loan you one of the half-dozen books I lug around.

Sam Sattler said...

I had the same reaction when I heard about this possibility, Cip. What in hell are people supposed to do while flying if books are banned? Books are what got me by during all the hours I spent in the air between Houston and Algeria (what a treat it would be to go through security with Algerian stamps in my passport today).

I just don't fly anymore because I don't have the patience for what is happening in airports today (and my new job doesn't require it). I understand the concerns but these days if I can't get there in my own car, I don't go.

Yes, I'm turning into a grouchy old man.

Stefanie said...

That really stinks! It must be on only flights coming in from outside the U.S. because domestic flights still allow books. Hopefully soon things will calm down again and the security people will come to their senses.

Isabella said...

This story freaked me out and I've been following it closely because I intend to be flying very soon. As of this writing, books ARE allowed. The changes in regulations for now affect flights to the US only.

Jeane said...

You were scaring me, seriously, for a moment. No books on planes? I would die of boredom if I could not read on a plane. I simply would not go. Glad to hear it probably won't affect my in-country travels (not that there's many of them...)

Merisi said...

Well, I understand how upsetting being without a book on long flight would be. My family members are so often on flights, I do not worry about anything as long as we all arrive safely. It is always so easy to criticize every precaution proposed, and even easier to criticize after the facts: Should there ever be anything found in a book, we all would be saying for crying out loud, it would have been obvious to bar books from being carried along.