Chris Johnson: Every time I take off my shoes, the terrorists win

June 22, 2014 

I'm not exactly a frequent flier, but I've finally reached that level of having flown enough that it is no longer amazing that I'm able to rise above the clouds and merely amazing if I'm able to get through an airport without my systolic topping 200. Or maybe it's my diastolic. Actually, it may be both.

As I'm writing this, I'm actually sitting at an airport gate having breezed through security at Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson in record time. There are no screaming kids around here. No one is fussing at gate attendants about delayed flights. And, yet, I'm aggravated.

Why? Because it is 124 degrees here at gate C15. I'm bound for southern Louisiana, so maybe its about that temperature down there and they're trying to get me acclimated a bit early. Whatever the reason, the point is that it's always something at the airport or on the airplane.

On the airplane, it's always the standard stuff -- screaming kids, too-talkative passengers, being squeezed between folks too big for their own seats or trying to find a spot to put my carry-on luggage only to find that all the bins are full because folks have put things such as pocketbooks and computer bags in the bins instead of under the seats in front of them where they should be.

Actually, I'm on the airplane now and found a new aggravation for the first time -- someone sitting in my seat. I've been on planes where we were delayed because everyone was playing musical seats, but this is the first time I've ever found someone in mine, as well as the one next to it.

This is, after all, why the airline has us select seats online beforehand, right? So that you can sit exactly where you want if it's available. Obviously this couple wanted to sit together. That's fine, but what's not fine is looking at me as if my wanting to sit in the seat I bought and paid for and picked out online is somehow out of line. Now, I've had loads of looney ideas, but sitting in my own seat is not one of them.

I think these people who can't sit in their own darn seats and those who crowd the overhead bins with tiny items should simple be booted from the plane … somewhere over Alabama.

But I'll deal with it all -- cry

ing babies, idiots in my seat and every other in-flight issue if I just didn't have to take off my shoes at airport security. One guy tries to blow up his foot, and since then 57 trillion people have had to clog security lines by fighting to get their shoes on and off. Nobody can address a situation that's past and gone like America.

Besides, every time I have to fight with my shoes or wear flip-flops or sandals through the airport, I feel like the terrorists won a battle. Not a war, but a battle to have us Americans aggravated forever more.

And while my feet smell like roses, when some other folks take off their shoes, it's chemical warfare. That's the kind of thing we're trying to stop.

Oh how I long for the day when we're beaming people thousands of miles, even millions of miles like they do on "Star Trek" -- shoes and all. Of course, the first place I want to be beamed to is Hawaii, so I likely won't be wearing shoes at all, terrorists or no terrorists.

-- Connect with Chris Johnson at Facebook.com/KudzuKidWriting or on Twitter @kudzukid88.

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