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National and Global, United States

Saturday, March 13, 2010

MLB Spring Training: "I need to check your bag"!

Well, here I am at the front gate of a major league Spring Training baseball stadium. My job today is to check everyone entering for contraband: Water bottles, bootlegged Coca-Cola, food, lawn chairs, etc. Even dogs. Some fans buy tickets for their animals at Spring Training. So, if a dog has a ticket, do we legally need to allow them in with their owners? Sounds like an easy task. But no...oooo.

"I need to check your bag" sounds  innocent enough doesn't it? Here's the problem: Almost every time I said that to a husband entering the ballpark, he would invariably point in back of him to his wife. He would say something like: "The bag is behind me", "There's the bag over the there", or something to that effect. Sometimes, they would just point,and say nothing.

Now, this presents a dilemma for a 'bag checker' like me. I'm trying to figure out an appropriate politically sensitive term rather then 'bag'. So, I started to use the term 'luggage'. "I need to check your luggage". Well, no one I know going to a baseball game actually has any 'luggage'. So, I got the response: " You mean baggage don't you?". Consequently, now back to the husband pointing in back of him to his wife! Baggage...Bag....paraphernalia. I just don't know anymore.

Starting today, I am using the term: "I need to check your belongings" in the hope that some guy from Chicago, who looks like John Belusi, doesn't start to pull his pants down as he hands me his ticket. That would ruin my day!

And I thought this would be easy.

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