Pat Down, Fraud Alert, Jean Jackets, Automatic Toilets and Siri–A Few Things I Encountered Last Week

I just got home from a short trip to see family and beyond and as always there are stories.  It is what makes my life my life.  I can’t make some of this stuff up, that is for sure.  A quick synopsis of a few things that I encountered during my week away.

  • TSA has been unusually friendly to me the past few trips.  I know they are doing their jobs and I certainly would not want to have to go through what they experience
  • much of the time.  Daily encounters with people who are not versed in how to successfully navigate the TSA procedures must certainly try their patience but recently I have had only positive experiences with them.  Perhaps it is because I try to engage them when I pass through but the past couple experiences have actually made me laugh.   When I walked through the detector the female attendant told me she had to pat down my stomach.  She did and I kind of laughed and told her it was “just fat”.  She muttered something about buttons but since I had none on any of my clothing items that day I can only imagine that what the machine detected was weirdly shaped fat cells.  The last time I triggered something was in Salt Lake City when she had to “pat down my beading” on my shirt.  (See below)
  • beading
  • We went to Target to pick up a few things for Aaron’s place and as we were checking out I had a nice conversation with the cashier—a young girl who was quite personable.  I slid my card, did all the usual things for the transaction and then she kind of covered up the screen and whispered to me that my card was declined.  She was being so careful to not draw attention to it and it was so sweet—–I told her I was clueless why it was not accepting it but whipped out my debit card and went on with the purchase.  I apologized and she was all apologetic to me and said  “I bet it because you are traveling!”   What I didn’t hear was my phone going off in my purse with both texts and calls from American Express Fraud Alert trying to verify my purchases were valid.   What alerted it?  Possible the rental car in Pennsylvania, the small purchases in Ohio, and then most likely the kickers were the purchases at Dicks and Target in North Carolina all within a short span of time.   Thank you, American Express, and thank you to that sweet cashier who was trying to not make me feel like a deadbeat!
  • Jean Jackets or Denim Jackets are one of my favorite items to take when traveling because they are so versatile.  They always seem to be appropriate and just the right weight for planes and for changing fall weather.  That is until my son tweeted a picture out stating that “Mom is rocking a jean jacket” which indicated that it was not cool.  Well…..I did an informal poll on Facebook and guess what?  Women young and old both like them.  So there.  My son (and the other son  chimed in and said that the girls at Columbia rocked them but he did not necessarily condone them) has had to reconsider his stance on jean jackets on Mom.  jean jacket
  • Everyplace you go these days there are automatic toilets that do the flushing for you without you having to do a thing. Sometimes they flush at inconvenient times but most often they do their job.  Occasionally there is the rare malfunction when they do not flush after the “deposit is made” to put it delicately.  One of my pet peeves is when someone leaves the stall without making sure that their deposit has flushed.  There is ALWAYS a little button to poke if the toilet does not do what it is supposed to do.  There is no excuse for non -flushed toilets.  It ticks me off to discover one.  Why don’t people take the initiative to do the obvious?   Any thoughts?
  • Finally —I always like to give thanks where thanks is due.  I asked my wonderful Siri on my phone a question and she came back with some great resources for me to find the answer.  I thanked her and she graciously answered me.  The funny thing is that this has always been something that I have said so maybe Siri is an extension of me after all!
  • siri
  • Don’t forget to come back tomorrow for a Comments for a Cause wrap up and reveal!


  1. I had a jean jacket but don’t remember what happened to it. Must have given it away at some point. I prefer a zipper jacket myself, my jean jacket just wasn’t all that comfortable.

  2. I have a pink denim jacket that I love! It’s perfect for travel and can be dressed up or down–like any jean jacket, for that matter.

    Glad you’ve had good TSA experiences. I’ve not had any negative ones in the US. However, I did have a negative experience with an aggressive pat-down in Haiti.

    Glad to know you’ve had a good week.

    Hugs from Ecuador,

  3. Denim is ALWAYS appropriate……dress it up or dress it down!!! And, yes, you rock!!!! Hugs!!!!!

  4. Your life is always so interesting. Paying attention to details and listening, as you do, always allows for great storytelling. And you, dear Beth Ann, are a wonderful jean jacket wearing storyteller.

    • Thanks, Audrey, I had to giggle about the whole jean jacket thing—-Aaron and Micah just think I am weird but oh well–that is okay. And the pat downs—-just another fun experience in my travelogue. 🙂

      • Most kids occasionally think their parents are weird. I don’t take too much stock in their comments, although when I had a shirt tucked inside my jeans recently, Caleb stated how yesteryear that was and I, when he wasn’t looking, pulled the shirt out. He never comments on my attire so I did take his comment to heart.

  5. I love how you put so much into simple kindnesses and “everyday” stories..

  6. I have a funny TSA story from years ago – my sister was a total tom boy and dressed like one too. She started developing quite early and on our first trip to the US we had to go through security. They made me go to the female TSA agent and my sister to the male because they thought she was a boy. Imagine the agents surprise when he found himself with a handful of boobs that were hiding under my sisters bulky sweater!!! 🙂

    • Oh that is SOOO funny! I bet that was one shocked guy!!!! 🙂 Come to think of it—I have another story that would be a good blog post about TSA. Putting it on my list!

  7. Well, I not only have a jean jacket, but a jean vest that you can wear over a lot of things, it has a tiny blue checked top half and solid bottom half and ties in front. Can’t tell you how old it is, but I still wear it now and then. Would not want to hear the comments that Aaron & Micah would have on the vest. 😉

  8. As you know Beth Ann I am a big fan of yours, and I too wear a dungaree jacket now and then. But I do have an issue with Target, they are a French owned enterprise that will not support, nor allow participation on their property of or by any veteran’s organizations here in the United States, including the Marine Corps Toys For Tots program, Wounded Warriors, Disabled Veterans etc. I personally will not spend one penny in their stores… I’m just saying that if it wasn’t for American Veterans the French would be speaking German today, they should be bending over backwards for them not turning their backs on them..

    • I think I know where you stand on this one and I am glad you shared the info, Jake!!! I suspect I support a lot of businesses that do not support things that I believe in or think are right. In that case I am an uninformed consumer I guess.
      I just watched a movie about the French Jews, btw, which really opened my eyes to what went on that I did not really understand. Good movie called Sarah’s Key.

  9. Oh I’m sorry,there’s one more thing about Target, you will not find a Salvation Army Bell ringing Santa Clause with the red kettle there either, they too are banned from the premises.

  10. I love jean jackets! How can a jean jacket ever NOT be cool! You look great I say.
    toilet deposits – ugh. some people just got not learning.
    I have not traveled in soooo long, I confess, I would be one of those clueless airport people. I’d be more likely to slap a body for patting down anything on me! haha

  11. Jean Jackets are cool. I don’t feel one wit safer with TSA in place but I still attempt to play nice and offer an insincere smile. Ok–I will check the flush to make sure the deposit has been made. It never occurred to me that a flusher would slack off. Siri, often makes me smile. Sounds like a fun trip.

  12. That is sweet about the Target cashier. Good for AMEX for watching your purchases so closely domestically. TSA, I swear I get felt up every flight and not in a good way!

    • AMEX has always been good to us but I should have paid closer attention to the alerts coming in on my phone!!! 🙂 Thanks so much for stopping by, Haralee! I truly appreciate you taking the time to comment.

  13. It’s a sad statement about mankind that credit card companies have to be so vigilant. Our card was declined after a nice dinner on vacation. It was embarrassing.

    • It is embarrassing, isn’ t it?? You feel like a deadbeat. That little cashier was so cute trying to hide that screen and I was just amazed that it was a fraud thing but I am glad they take it seriously.

  14. You will have to excuse the boys. Kids have a way of looking at their parents and finding them doing things that they think is not for older people. Wear whatever you like.

  15. Sounds like you had some good laughs again Beth Ann. You certainly look at things in a positive light. That’s why you get treated so well wherever you go, by security personnel, store clerks etc. What you send out comes back to you for sure!

  16. I always this Siri is being a little saucy when she answers that way!

  17. I love my jean jacket AND I wear it with jeans.. 🙂

    I always stand there staring at the self-flusher after my “deposit is made” when they don’t flush cause I don’t want to leave until it flushes. I had no idea there was a little button! Now you have taught me two valuable things~mail archiving and little buttons on self-flushers! You have of course taught me some really seriously valuable things for which I thank you.

    I am about to trade in my iPhone 4 for an iPhone 5S. Could you please come to MissouREE and teach me how to use it?.. 😀 My iPhone 4 is still bossing me around but the ios 7 thing is messing with my apps!

  18. You look great in a jean jacket, as I’ve stated before. You seem to travel well – I was travelling this past weekend & I don’t travel so well anymore – strange beds, no Keurig coffee, limited mobility issues. I was so happy to get home last night!

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