The TSA, Lie to Me, and my scowl

Recently I wrote about hating to stand in line…any line. I get this really intense look on my face. This is especially embarrassing when I run into someone from church.

I’ve joked about it with them by telling them that I am a people person and I am on break. We laugh and they walk away wondering why I look so ticked off. Honestly, it is a pretty angry face. I should work on it but it does keep people from talking to me. Well, almost everyone. It didn’t keep a TSA guy from talking to me when my wife and I were flying to Florida. More on that in a little bit.

I don’t know what it was about being in that line at the airport that I let upset me. Besides standing in it, I mean. I could be the endless conversations from nervous flyers that surrounded me, or whiny children, or the people with babies that I know will be sitting next to me on the plane. I would get these visions of them having colic and crying for the whole flight. I remember there were two people with dogs. In my imagination I was trapped between the lady with the colicky baby and a scared and howling dog. My wife was bumped to First Class because of good behavior.

Anyway, I was in line looking nothing like a friendly pastor and this TSA guy asks me about my trip and some other inane questions. I smiled because he made me aware of my less than friendly demeanor. Anyway, he was pleasant enough and he certainly had a nice smile.

This wasn’t idle chit chat, I later found out. Now, if it were not for the Fox Television show Lie to Me and a news article I would have never known what was up.

USA Today

Several weeks ago it was a rainy afternoon and I was not in the mood to ride my motorcycle. I sat down to watch Lie to Me on Netflix. I watched an episode, or two. Anyway, one of them showed these people who had a striking similar look on their face as I do when I am standing in line. Bad things were going to happen if you saw a guy or gal with that expression.

Then there was a news article about the TSA “Chat Down” program. They look for people that look like the characters in Lie to Me and ask them questions. Well, I was “Chatted Down” because I looked like a security threat! I sure am glad I am not one of those really angry people. But I got “Chatted Down” because some TSA official watched Lie to Me and thought Dr. Lightman knew what he was talking about.

I’ve decided I need to smile more often. I’m sure there is someone out there that will have something to say about it. “Hey pal, you look awfully happy. Nobody from Michigan is that happy.”  Maybe the next time I will look more like a happy, well-adjusted pastor and not a terrorist.

That is enough of a reason to smile…I think.

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