Random Test Subject

Tim Serong Almost every time I fly, it seems like I get pulled aside for the random explosives trace detection test. I always assumed it was because I usually look like a crazy mountain man (see photo). But, if you google around for “airport random explosives test”, you’ll find forum posts from security staff assuring everyone they’re not doing profiling, and even a helpful FAQ from Newcastle Airport (“Why are you always chosen for ‘explosive testing’?“) which says the process is “as the officer finishes screening one person, they are required to ask the next person walking through screening to undertake the ETD test”.

So maybe it’s just bad luck. Except possibly for that time at Hobart airport last week, where I was seeing off a colleague after linux.conf.au 2017. As far as I could tell, we were the only two people approaching security, and my colleague was in front. He was waved through to the regular security screening, and I was asked over for an explosives test, to which I replied “you’re most welcome to test me if you like, but I’m not actually going through security into departures”. The poor guy looked a bit nonplussed at this, then moved on to the next traveler who’d since appeared in line behind us.

What to do about this in future? Obviously, I need a new t-shirt, with text something like one of these:

Random Test SubjectPick Me for Random Testing Randomly Chosen Every Time

If anyone else would like a t-shirt along these lines, the images above conveniently link to my Redbubble store. Or, if you’d rather DIY, there’s PNGs here, here and here (CC-BY-SA as usual, and no, they’re not broken, it’s white text on a transparent background).

Finally, for some¬†real randomness, check out Keith Packard’s ChaosKey To Production presentation. I’m not actually affiliated with Keith, but the ChaosKey sure looks nifty.

The Discordian Hot Dog

As all faithful Discordians know, there has long been a prohibition on the consumption of hot dog buns. This dates back to at least the Fifth Year of The Caterpillar, when the hermit Apostle Zarathud first found the FIVE COMMANDMENTS carved in gilded stone, while building a sun deck for his cave. The exact wording of the pertinent commandment is:

A Discordian shall Partake of No Hot Dog Buns, for Such was the Solace of Our Goddess when She was Confronted with The Original Snub.
– Commandment IV of the PENTABARF

This can be problematic for lovers of hot dogs, but at long last I believe I have found the perfect solution: all you need do is put the frankfurt through a bagel.

As you can clearly see it provides all the convenience of – and even more tasty goodness than – a regular hot dog bun, while simultaneously keeping to the letter of the sacred text.