Current mood: cynical
Wow... Where to start..
Great!! Now the whole plane starts freaking out. People are clamoring about guns, knives, bombs, and the best….. How I am some sort of terrorist. Yep, ME… working all my life to secure this country and the businesses within it…. A TERRORIST! The next was my favorite.
Attendant: (to the other attendant as well as the pilot… but loud enough for the first 10 rows to hear) : I think he may be some sort of terrorist. He says he works for the government, but I just don't know. I don't believe him.
Fantastic. I am going out of my way to go to Pittsburgh to see my girlfriend and attend her Grand Fathers 80th Birthday, meeting the ENTIRE family and ALL of her old friends from growing up there. I thought that was stressful.. HAHA.. Now I have to worry about the passengers, crew, and whatever is waiting back at the gate. Maybe I will be meeting Grandpa from a pretty urn or conference call from the hospital.
Finally the pilot chimes in
Pilot: One of our attendants has identified a major security risk on the flight and we will be going back to the O'hare gate to further investigate.
Whew…. Least we aren't gonna fly around so one of these 9/11 scared maniac sheep of American society, back in the bowels of the plane can try and be a hero and toss me out. I may have a shot at living through the ignorance of this stress addled icon of customer service flight attendant. We arrive to the gate… flashing lights all over…and I stand up to get my cell phone. Fortunately I know a lot of government and TSA contacts that I have done work for. I spam every person I know that can vouch for who I am and what I can do. I am met mid ascent to the overhead baggage by our first hero in the back
Hero: SIT DOWN!!!!
ME: (obviously this guy is gonna save this freshly docked plane from the bad terrorist before the cops do… his one big shot at TV glory, oh man… what now?) Hey man, I am just getting my phone… there is a huge misunderstanding… Its all ok.
Hero: SIT THE F*%& DOWN BEFORE I COME UP THERE AND MAKE YOU SIT (**Cheered on by a few other passengers chours'n in**)
I sit down and disengage..right as the plane stops and attaches to the catwalk. As soon as the door of the jet flings open, the crew quickly scoots outside. No announcement to the passengers… nothing… Gotta love that?!? I would have been terrified if I was in the back of that flight. They are off the plane for almost 20 min when an agent from TSA Sticks his badge laden hat through the door. I nod and walk out. I am met By Chicago Police officials, TSA Chief, TSA Lieutenant, Captain /Co Cap of the flight. The first thing I am met with is the Captain of the flight with his hand extended. Naturally I bounce out of the plane and say " Hey guys, what's up?" I was as American as baseball and apple pie. I walk up to the captain and shake his hand
Captain: " Mr. Nickerson…. We are REALLY sorry about this mess. Our flight attendant did not know that you are allowed to have these and she really handled the situation inappropriately! We are so sorry!"
Me: " Right on… I understand, but that was really crazy. I tried to give them to her and explain, but she wouldn't stop yelling at me."
Chicago Police: " We are sorry Chris…. We understand that these are tools of your trade and appreciate what you guys do. This is not something we have ever run into before here."
TSA: "We apologize for the situation; did you bring those through our checkpoints?"
Me: "NO, but I have many times. Every time I fly I hand them to TSA before screening my bags. This way they can approve and check them out."
TSA: "Oh, well you shouldn't have those but we…"
Chicago Police "Give Him Back his TOOLS!!" As they snatch it from his hands and toss at me
I tell the clan thanks…etc… and start making my way back on the jet. The captain calls out
Captain: "So.. I have to ask… how long would it take to get through the lock on that door?"
Me: "What???? Um…. * Blown away by the question, I walk on the plane… look at the lock n come back** Prolly 30+ min if ever… it's a Medco… those kick ass"
Captain: "Great, I never knew.." ** as he puts an hand on my back like I was his frat buddy and marches up the catwalk with me
He proceeds to make an announcement to the passengers about how I was a security professional and WAS supposed to have what I did and that they were totally safe and to know worry.
Had to write this, because i was stick of tellin the story..and also let people know to be carefull of those flight attendants still living in the paranoia of 9/11. Often time fear outweighs common sense