Four bras is too many bras (and other airport disasters)

My prediction is that I will die in a plane crash because the universe has been trying to turn me off from flying for quite some time now. The first odd airport interaction I had was flying back to London from Florence. After getting a lot of weird looks for carrying around a stuffed animal, I decided to put Pluto in my backpack, which I felt insanely guilty for because he was the only one in that airport not giving me looks and whispering nasty things about Americans as I walked past. I guess I may have been talking to him through my bag which may have inspired some of the nasty looks but either way an Italian security guard pulled my aside and insisted he check my bag. When he opened it, there was Pluto squished in smiling up at him. I think they thought I was trying to smuggle a baby back to London and they had to put an end to it. As a nineteen year old, that may have been less embarrassing.
Every time I travel I’m subjected to “random bag checks” which I suspect is because I am blonde haired and blue eyed so they can say “see? we’re not racially profiling this is the most average, least threatening looking girl alive and we are checking her.”
Then there was the time I was going on spring break to New Orleans. The night before we left was Parade Day at school (a 24-hour binge drinking episode in which you set your alarm for 8am so you can begin drinking my 8:30). I think I drunk packed for spring break and was really determined to work out on this trip which is why i packed one single 10-lb hand weight. Not the pair. Just one. Drink Me probably thought two would be too agressive but just one made me seem really fit and cool (???). Anyway, I forgot it was there and though Hungover Me was wondering the next day why my purse was so fucking heavy, I didn’t even think to check what Drunk Me had packed the night before.
When I got to security, of course I was pulled out of line for a “random bag check.” I was quite used to this by now. “Is there anything is your bag that could be used as a weapon, ma’am?” I wracked my brain because to be honest if Drunk Me had decided it was appropriate to pack a knife for cooking or scissors for crafts on the plane I wouldnt have been shocked. “I don’t think so” was my answer. The TSA agent reached into my bag, pulled out the weight, and confiscated it. WTF am I gonna do with just one? Was my first thought, even thought Drunk Me had obviously been convinced that just one was enough.
Once my plane from Charleston to Newark was delayed because a fucking tornado had touched down in Jersey. I sat in the airport longer than it would have taken me to drive home. I got so ridiculously drunk alone at the bar that when my flight was boarding 9 hours later, I almost missed it.
Then there was the time I had to sleep in JFK airport with my sister and I missed going to Paris for a second time. I still can’t talk about it because I’m scarred for life. My sister insisted someone be fired from American Airlines and I’m ashamed of the things I told God I would do if I didn’t get to Paris. Whatever.
But the worst of it was the time I got strip searched in Heathrow. In a sick cosmic joke, I spent most of my semester abroad exhibiting all the symptoms of depression. I decided I had to cancel my trip to Paris (the first time I missed out on that city) and fly home the next day or else I would seriously hurt myself. With only a few hours to pack, I did the best I could and decided whatever was left over, I would wear through security. Good girl, I thought to myself, you can still think rationally, you’re not doing that bad. I literally thought this was brilliant. The next day as I was leaving for the airport, I was wearing one pair of leggings with a pair of jeans over them, a tank top, a short sleeved short, a long sleeved shirt, a sweatshirt and a jacket. Oh, and four bras. It was April.
When my friends saw me, they knew something was up right away. “Uhm. Your boobs look amazing.”
“Thanks, I’m wearing four bras,” I said smugly, still believing this idea was gold.
I explained that I was just going to wear all my extra clothes through security and then throw it all in my carry on after it had been weighed. They insisted the underwire in my bras would set of the alarm. As it turns out, they were right.
To make a long story short, I cried so much in Heathrow that they didn’t even charge me for my extra checked bag. When I cam to security, sure enough, my bras set off the alarm.
“Oh, I think thats my underwire.” I pretended to be embarrassed but this was the least of my worries at the moment. So then they wanded me, which is more precise so it won’t go off for everyday articles of clothing (like only ONE underwire bra). But my FOUR set it off. Next thing I know I’m being pulled into a side room by two female TSA agents and being asked to remove my shirt. “Okay, but I’m wearing four or five shirts.” Cue the odd glances. “Oh, and also I’m wearing four or five bras.” Now they were ready to lock me up for my own safety.
“Honey, why?”
I started crying hysterically and explaining that I packed in a hurry and they were sympathetic but they still had to feel me up. So there I was in my four bras with a British TSA agent feeling under every single one of my four bras to make sure I wasn’t hiding a knife or drugs. As I was leaving the room one of the agents said to me, “well, now you know.” As if every girl has that one experience that teaches them not to wear four bras at an airport.
What I took away from all this was that Paris is not “always a good idea” and that quote is dumb as fuck. Nothing is always a good idea. I also learned not to rush packing and to never ever wear more than two bras at once.

Proof that I hang out with a stuffed animal when I travel


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