At Midway Airport, Adam and I got randomly selected to go through the TSA PreCheck lanes. It was so nice not to have to remove my laptop, shoes, or 3-1-1 bag. Wheeee!!!
Alas, lest I sashay too gallantly through security, the TSA agent working the bag x-ray pulled my suitcase off of the conveyer and set it aside. He called for an inspection. Ruh roh.
I started racking my brain for what might have triggered the inspection. Were they going to nail me for the bottle of BodyGlide that I had stuffed into my running shoes instead of inside my Ziploc bag? I was pretty sure the bottle was less than 3 ounces but maybe not? Or perhaps the foil in the GU packets was causing suspicion. It would be terrible if they confiscated those. I had brought the Salted Caramel flavor, which are my favorite!
The inspection agent came by. She picked up my bag and asked me to confirm that it was mine and that I had packed it myself. Yes and yes.
She brought it over to the inspection table and showed me what had come up on the x-ray.
I peered at the screen and instantly realized the problem. It looked like I had a police baton in my bag! E.g.:
The culprit for the offending picture? It was actually my portable massage roller ("The Stick"!)
Since The Stick is much more portable than a foam roller, it is easily my go-to muscle-rolling tool when I'm traveling.
I tried not to laugh while I told the agent what it was. I offered to take it out of the suitcase for closer inspection. Adam, who was standing nearby, jokingly added, "...and if anyone is in need of some muscle relief..."
The agent smiled when she saw The Stick. She swabbed it for explosive residue and found none, of course. Then she said, "I had a pretty good feeling what it was. But the guy working the machine is new. He doesn't know." I also smiled and told her, "No worries, I'd rather that we are safe with these things."