I've been in Lisbon for a few days, which has been very pleasant. It's a lovely city and the company and conversation has been excellent. On the way back, though, I started to get nervous about security, and not just because I heard on the TV about the car bombs in London (one of which was towed away for a parking violation, not for being a tool of indiscriminate mass murder -- shades of J.G. Ballard again). When I went through the security check to get on the plane, I forgot that I put my toothpaste in my carry-on bag in clear violation of the posted procedures. No-one noticed of course, and nor did they seem concerned that there were six mobile phones in it either (I'd been running a seminar that needed phones for demonstration purposes). I only remembered when I was waiting to pick up my bag the other side of X-ray and the security guards were making an old dear in front of me empty out all of her stuff until they discovered the offending item: a small bottle of orange juice. Then, on the way back, I forgot to turn my phone off. I didn't realise until I was back at terminal one at Heathrow and I went to turn it back on again. Amazingly, though, it didn't appear to interfere with the aircraft's navigational systems and we didn't crash, despite the dire warnings on the in-flight announcement. Why would terrorists drive cars full of explosive around when all they need to do is get off a plane but leave their mobile phone switched on an hidden in the seat pocket in front of them?
I decided to leave that last sentence in, despite the fact that five minutes after I got home and was making a cup of tea in the kitchen while chatting with the family, there was a newsflash on the radio concerning terrorists trying to drive a car full of petrol into Glasgow airport.
In the future, everyone will be famous to fifteen people.
[posted with ecto]