Wednesday, April 3, 2013

the pat down

Nothing to hide here
This time last week I was preparing to head to merrye olde England and gay Paree! Thursday at the butt crack of dawn (also known as 5:30 a.m.) I got up to shampoo and style my hair before we left. I knew we would be constantly on the go during the trip and didn’t want my hair to be a major concern. Also I didn’t want to give TSA a reason to pat down my hair. I’ve read horror stories about the experience. If celebrities have to go through pat downs, what hope would there be for me? Two-strand twists simply hanging down seemed like the best option to combat both problems. So I mixed up some curl-leeper (my fave product) and shea butter and twisted away. Typically twists are how I wear my hair during domestic travels. I never had a problem. Until this trip.

Of course TSA just had to check my hair (and my soul sister Ashley). Imagine my shock when the TSA agent directed me to another for a pat down of my luxurious twists. What on Earth could I have hidden in my twists? Nothing would have been concealed. Not a hair pin, rubber band or gray hair. I couldn’t have hidden a marmalade sandwich (like Paddington Bear) even if I tried. Sure my hair is gigantic, but that’s only when I let loose my massive Afro. That doesn’t happen often for fear of it taking over my entire body. My twists were hanging as flat as a pancake. I didn’t even curl them for fear of the twists seeming too voluminous.

At least the TSA woman was really nice about the whole process. It was maybe 30 seconds at most and felt more like a curious observer wanted to feel my hair instead of a pat down. Perhaps that was the case the whole time. The second TSA agent just wanted to see and experience the beauty that is my hair up close. Who can be mad at that? All she had to do was ask. Of course not every mere mortal knows how to approach my hair, so she needed to use the other TSA agent as a wingman. I can understand. My hair is magical.

I can honestly say it wasn’t really a bad experience getting my hair checked. My only complaint is the fact she used gloves that have touched countless other heads. I did not get up at 5:30 a.m. to wash my hair just to get lice and dirt from someone else. TSA should look into changing gloves between hair searches. It’s just not sanitary to have a pat down otherwise.


  1. "Sure my hair is gigantic, but that’s only when I let loose my massive Afro. That doesn’t happen often for fear of it taking over my entire body.
    Lol....this is why I've had twists the past 2 years. It started out as a protective style one winter and never left! I'd never get it tame if I undid it all the way.
    As for the patdown, never fails in larger airports, even with twists. I wonder who decided that if the hair isnt laid it must be searched???

    1. Fros develop a consciousness of their own and I just can't control the madness. Next trip maybe ill see if cornrows deter them from a oat down