Transparent Travelers

tsa-flab-ray.jpgFlying out to his tour of Asia, Vice President Dick Cheney had an embarrassing moment at the airport: He was caught in the sights of the Transportation Security Administration’s newest method for revealing concealed weapons- The Flab-Ray.

Yes, it looks right through your clothing to see what you may be concealing, including any “rolls,” “handles,” or loose flaps of skin that may be the result of the over-eating, dieting, or aging processes. The TSA says, don’t worry about it looking beneath your skin. (Were you worried about that? Trying to conceal some kidney stones?)

Now, back to reality. It’s not called the Flab-Ray and that isn’t Cheney in the picture (he’s almost certainly fatter).

Here’s the real scoop on the backscatter x-ray machine, getting a tryout at an Arizona airport on people who fail the initial security screening and are allowed to choose between a pat-down for weapons or the scanner.

Think what you like about how invasive the peek-a-boo machine may be, but there’s no doubt that some people will dream of owning a hand-held version of this, just for the fun of it.


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