If you've ever travelled into America, you'll know how dedicated the Transportation Security Administration officers are. Perfectly honed machines, occasionally friendly, never caught unawares, they are the very bastion of the war on terror. We take off our shoes and our clothes, unpack our bags, scull our liquids, reveal our cosmetics, rally our anxiety and sweat under questioning for no apparent reason.
I was thrilled to discover that one may be frisked at airports in Europe. And I mean frisked.
When I travel, I like to dress comfortably. Slip-on shoes, cotton clothes, perhaps a layer, and - of course - a comfortable, very far from sexy brassiere. I was leaving Frankfurt for London when I beeped as I walked through the thing, even in my non-metal lightweight cotton. The lady (not the man) ushered me over to her, und said auf Deutsch, "lift up your arms, please." Given the context, I knew what she wanted.
Look, there's no doubt about it. She totally felt me up. She placed her hands around my neck, ran them down across my shoulders and down my arms to my hands. Then she came to my breasts. She didn't feel them per se, but placed her hand in a praying position, to press between them. My comfortable bra stopped her in her tracks, and she released her praying hands to make a grab for it, took hold, and gave a quick pull. We glanced at each other. I chuckled.
She continued the task at hand down my back, across my hips, my thighs, squeezed my calves. Then she thanked me and had me move along. What a job that must be. Feeling up the great unwashed in the non-place that is the airport. Possibly better in Europe, presumably.
And, now I know where to put the heroin. And the bombs.
I'm an Australian designer who specialises in digital and cultural work. Most of my career thus far has been on the web, but I'm excited that it's starting to creep out into the real world.
I am the founder of Museum in a Box, making interactive museum objects with simple, fun tech, for wide-as-possible distribution, and I own a company called Good, Form & Spectacle, making design in service to cultural heritage for clients like The British Museum, MoMA, and the Wellcome Trust.
Please visit my LinkedIn profile to find out more about my work.