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Sunday, June 20th, 2004

Time Event
10:23p
I fought the law

So my brush with the law: while waiting for the -- delayed -- flight from Ontario to Los Angeles a security guard approached and asked if she might speak with me. Over there, away from the seating area and closer to the (empty) gate desk. Sure.

``Someone reported that you were taking photographs of the gate and making notes.'' Um ... well, photographs, sure; I take pictures of pretty near anything. ``What were you taking pictures of?''

Well ... just some establishing pictures of the area. The gate, the road and railroad outside, the public art displays, the pictures of Ted, A Far Too Cute Part Of United and its cheery signs saying Ted is Happy to Fly You or something like that. Stuff.

``Why were you taking these pictures?'' Well ... to show people where I've been. Here I was off my game; what really motivated me was my gate assignment was number 201A -- an unusual and therefore interesting number, particularly in a reasonably new airport that hasn't had to be renovated dozens of times to pick up numbering anomalies -- and that from the looks of things there was no gateway and we were to walk down stairs onto the tarmac and similarly up steps to the airplane (my guess was correct).

``You really don't want to be doing that these days. It makes people nervous.'' And it was at this point, I swear, that I finally realized what she was getting at. ``We don't even let TV crews film outside anymore.'' I stammered an OK and my typical clueless, unaware look obviously made her realize I'm about as great a threat to the international aviation infrastructure as, oh, Dick Clark is. I apologized and she pointed out I didn't have to give up taking pictures; if I travelled with a friend and took pictures of him, it'd be much less conspicuous.

I saved my giggling for my layover in Los Angeles.

Trivia: Walt Kelly was an animator for three Mickey mouse short cartoons, Clock Cleaners, The Little Whirlwind, and The Nifty Nineties. Source: Phi Beta Pogo, edited by Selby Kelly and Bill Crouch Jr.

Currently Reading: The Best of C. M. Kornbluth, C. M. Kornbluth. Edited by Frederick Pohl.

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