Friday, September 4, 2015

Known Traveler

TSA knows who I am. In the language of post-9/11 security, I am a Known Traveler. My vital statistics have been reviewed; my fingerprints checked against various databases. (Yes, I watch NCIS.)

I have my very own, unique Known Traveler Number (KTN). This morning, I updated my recent JetBlue reservation to New York and my profile to include my KTN. Although I am a very private person, who prefers to maintain an aura of mystery, I am strangely happy to be known in such an intimate way by TSA.

Now I can enjoy expedited screening at major US airports. My Pumas still securely laced, my quart-sized plastic bag of liquids and creams stashed in my tote, I will walk through the process in record time.

Something gained; something lost. With my quart-sized bag hidden from the naked eye, how will the TSA guards see what a great job I've done filling it with my Lilliputian jars and bottles? I will never forget the frisson when, early one morning at OIA, the guard lifted my little bag high over his head and said to the inpatient travelers in line behind me: "See folks. This is how it's done!"

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