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Frank Davis

Banging on about the Smoking Ban

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Hot Horseradish Sauce

Mi amiga en Esplugues likes hot horseradish sauce, and every time I have come to Spain for the last 10 years  I have brought her a jar of it. Last year, however, at the airport to catch the flight to Barcelona, I was told I couldn´t take a jar on the flight. Nor could I take the numerous scissors, knives, and screwdrivers that I always take with me wherever I go, because, well, you never know when you´ll need them. I had to post them home instead, if I didn´t want them confiscated.

So this year I bought a jar of hot horseradish sauce, opened it, and carefully spooned its contents into a plastic bag, which I sealed shut with tape. I then washed and dried the jar and its lid. And then I pressed the plastic bag flat, and put it inside a large envelope. And then I placed the envelope in my travel bag between a couple of books, and put the empty jar elsewhere in the bag, and the lid in a side pocket.

I vaguely thought that these 3 separate components might be spotted by an alert X-ray operator, and that my bag would be opened. At the subsequent interrogation, the jar and the lid and the plastic bag of hot horseradish sauce would be laid out before me, side by side, by my interrogator. ¨Trying to smuggle horseradish sauce to Spain, eh?¨ he would sneer. ¨Nothing gets past our eagle eyes!¨ And he would shine the lights closer into my eyes.

In the event, the bag sailed through the X-ray scanner without anything being spotted. And this morning I cut off one corner of the plastic bag in my hotel room, and squeezed the horseradish sauce back into the jar I´d bought it in, and replaced the lid. This evening I will present a jar of hot horseradish sauce to mi amiga. Well, seven-eighths of a jar, the remaining eighth having been lost in the double transfer.

But, you might ask me, what did you use to cut off the corner of the plastic bag, seeing as you weren´t able to bring any knife or scissors with you? Good question! The answer is that I borrowed a knife from mi amiga last night, for the ostensible purpose of ´cutting up a sausage´. I will return the knife before I leave. There is hardly any point in buying a sharp knife in Spain which I will be unable to take on the flight back to England.

There is also the little matter of the spoon in my pocket. This morning I realised I´d probably need a spoon to ladle the horseradish sauce back into its jar. And so last night I ´borrowed´ a little spoon from one of the local cafes. In the event, I didn´t need it. But it´s in my pocket now, and I intend to return to the cafe, order another cafe con laite, and leave an extra spoon in the saucer as I leave. With luck, they will notice neither the temporary loss of one little spoon, nor its return.

Such are among the strange consequences of the War on Terror.

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Fear and sheep

Yes airport security for PC reasons will not use profiling.
Well,the profiling-screening probably occurs when the ticket is purchased ,so why the security.
Probably to maintain a sense of security and to keep the fear going.
The fear that keeps the sheeple penned or queing for hours .


Dear Frank,

That is a most elegant little gem; excellent writing.

You deserve to be published.

I wish I could write with such style.

Best wishes

Styx (http://blackdogblog-paul.blogspot;com) (Paul)

Speaking of Knives

I once made the mistake of trying to enter a Federal office building with my Swiss Army knife on my key chain. I told the security guard to just take it, but he told me that he couldn't, and I would have to leave the premises, dispose of the knife and then come back. So, I went outside and figured that I'd just hide it somewhere or drop it on an inconspicuous spot near the sidewalk. Well, wouldn't you know that the street was swarming with young children? They had all just come swarming out of buses, apparently on a field trip to attend an event at the theater across the street. So, I didn't want to drop the knife and then have some kid pick it up. I finally dumped the knife somewhere and, now dripping with sweat from running around in the heat while wearing a suit, arrived late at my appointment. You'd think there would be a trash can around, but no. (Trash cans outside a Federal building are probably considered a security risk.) So, it was all quite comical. It made me think of that old Batman movie where he was trying to get rid of a huge bomb, but couldn't find anywhere to dispose of it. In fact, here's that scene, if anyone cares:


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