In honor of those traveling during this school vacation week, I bring you Five Innocent Things Which Make Me Look Nefarious:

  • I photograph fire engines. I’m a firefighter, a bit of a buff, and an apparatus geek. It comes naturally. It used to be just a hobby, but in the modern world it gets some very odd looks.
  • I fly one-way. Synchronizing strange work and family schedules means I’m often flying in one direction and driving the other with my wife. It increases my sketchiness factor in the eyes of the government. Which brings me to. . .
  • I park my car at the airport and walk away. I need it to be there when I get back. See above.
  • I photograph documents with my iPhone. I have a great scanner app for it, and I try to run a paperless office. I always feel like James Bond as I snap away. Q would be proud.
  • I have sleep apnea. By itself this is not suspicious, but it means I travel with a CPAP machine. The TSA seems convinced that this is some sort of infernal device. It earns me an ‘enhanced screening’ every time I get in the same zip code as an airport.

Enjoy your vacation, and if you saw that guy packing his camera and walking away at the airport don’t worry it was just me.