Shoeless Jeff

Shoeless Jeff

: When I go through airport security, I take off my shoes and jackets and pull out my laptop and stow my change and phone and get through quickly and when it’s all done — even when I’ve switched flights at the last minute and, as a result, end up being flagged for special screening — I always say, “Thank you.” I’m damned glad these guys are inspecting us because I’ve seen what happens when we don’t.

And so I got pissed reading Joe Sharky’s travel column in The Times today about a guy who gets pissy about taking off his shoes.

Mr. Coop, who is from San Jose, Calif., says he will travel about 160,000 miles this year. “If I have enough time, I will decline to take my shoes off, just to see what’s going to happen on the other side,” he says.


Now I certainly understand women getting pissy about being felt up by pervy TSA guys and I expect the bad guys to be exposed and fired.

But taking off your shoes? What’s the big, boy? We actually know that a bozo terrorist tried to use his shoe as a weapon of mass murder. So take off your damned shoes, guy, and stop wasting the time of the TSA agents — whom I’ve found to be consistently courteous and professional — and the people in line behind you.

: When I was in Toronto, I went up the CN Tower — which, by the way, was a weird experience, since I already don’t like heights and after 9/11 I have nightmares about city towers; I stayed to the back of the elevator and wouldn’t go anywhere near the glass for 1,200 feet up (yes, kids, Daddy’s a wimp). But one thing made me comfortable: Every tourist had to stand inside a contraption with little jets that spritzed air all over us. “What’s it detecting?” I asked the guard, who looked uncomfortable and said nothing. “Explosives?” I asked. He nodded. “I’m glad you do it,” I said. “So am I,” he said.