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Hidden costs of airport security

Having just returned from a roundtrip flight to Texas during the “high” level alert this past week, I can report first-hand on airport security and its hidden costs.

First, I didn’t notice anything new in airport security procedures during the high level alert. Whenever I travel to Texas, I take a rifle or two. Not as protective coloration, but because Texas in general, and my father’s ranch in particular, are full of things I want to shoot. Specifically, during the Christmas season, white-tail deer. I am pleased to report that my shooting iron did not set off any alarm bells (by now, I know the drill for transporting firearms by air), and I had a very pleasant conversation with the guard in Wisconsin who confirmed that it wasn’t loaded. Whereupon I locked it up in its case, as required by law, and didn’t think twice about it until I got to Texas.

I drove out to the ranch at the first opportunity, gun and various hunting supplies in tow, and had barely been sitting in my blind for an hour when one of the larger deer I have ever seen in the wild came strolling by. He passed within 40 yards of my blind, and I watched him feed and mess about for over half an hour. He was a big eight-pointer, with heavy, symmetrical antlers.

At this point, one of the hidden costs of airport security reared its ugly head. I had, you see, forgotten to unlock my gun case when I got to my parent’s house, and had left the key firmly attached to my briefcase sitting on my bed. I was sitting in my blind unarmed, the rifle securely locked in its case back at the pickup. I didn’t get my deer, and its all BUSH’s fault!

11 comments to Hidden costs of airport security

  • I am happy for the deer. Don’t they have beasts you can prey upon in your neck of the woods?

  • Julian Morrison

    You could always have thrown the box at it, javelin style.

  • You hadn’t sighted in your weapon before taking it hunting in a new environment? You didn’t take a camera?

    Well, I guess that you couldn’t have claimed to have locked up your fishing tackle, could you?

  • R C Dean

    Of course they have critters to shoot at here in Wisconsin. Never too many opportunities to hunt, though.

    I generally check my zero at the ranch before my first hunt. The gate is about a mile from my stand.

    No camera. Wouldn’t have used it if I had it – I didn’t want to spook the deer. A coyote came along and did that for me. Never saw the big one again, though – the wind went against me a little the last two days, so that may have been why.

  • M

    Your daddy didn’t have a gun you could borrow?!?
    A sad day for Texas.

  • Very different from my frustration regarding a big eight-pointer, with heavy, symmetrical antlers this year. I saw mine the second day of Wisconsin’s bow deer season, but it was wandering across a front lawn in Wauwatosa, a Milwaukee suburb, where it would have been illegal to take it even if I had a bow and a deer tag with me.

  • dickweed

    I have to echo “M”, above.
    Having grown up in Texas, so many years ago, I’m shocked there wasn’t a veritable arsenal at the ranch. Had you stayed with my family, lo these many years ago, you’d have had your pick of a number of fine weapons.

  • Fred Boness

    The deer know. They just know. If you ever get to hunt at Ft. McCoy in Wisconsin you will find the deer KNOW that hunters aren’t allowed to follow them into the range impact areas.

  • R C Dean

    Nobody lives at the ranch – my folks live in town, and it was too far to drive to get my keys or another gun.

  • Alfred E. Neuman

    You should have killed it with your bare hands/knife (I must assume that you at least had a knife on you) and drunk its blood. That’s what I like to do to huma…uh, never mind.

    Lucky deer.

  • Pete

    Alfred E. Neuman,

    Approximately ten years ago, before I bought a house, I rented a room from, what is known locally as, a “Piney”. This gentleman’s favorite food was road kill deer. He would find the animals in the cooler early mornings on the shoulders of the local roads. He’d dump the body in the trunk of his Audi, take it home, dress it, and they were his major source of protein. All completely illegal, BTW. One afternoon, while traveling to Home Depot with him and a friend of his, we rounded a low-speed curve(15mph) and bumped into a deer that happened to step right out in front of the pickup truck. The deer fell to the ground, stunned. We stepped out to check the deer and the truck. The “Piney” started to root around in the tool box for a tire iron to crack the deer over the head. Luckily the deer came to it’s senses before the battery could be performed and returned to nature.