I was in Home Hardware Depot buying some material for my latest construction project and, seeing I expected my purchases to be many heavy items, I brought a sturdy, small backpack.
On arrival I deposited my backpack with the security guard at the entrance repository.
Once done with my shopping and ready to pay at the cash register, I instructed the cashier and her helper that I am not in need of wasting another plastic bag because I brought my own bag. I pointed to the repository, indicating my intentions also to the security guard, exchanged my repository ticket for my backpack, and carried it the 2m distance to the cash register.
At that moment all hell broke loose. The guard came over with his beating wand, poking it inside my bag, and instructed me not to expedite the loading of its new contents, making sure to double count the many items just in case some extra ones didn’t slip in there. The cashier and her helper were also making frenzied, panicky movements.
In impatience I finally exclaimed, “Is there really a big difference between putting the stuff in this bag as opposed to that?” They all stared at me in bewilderment, as if I had been speaking Japanese.
Of course there was no difference, but because I had brazenly stepped out of the normal routine by not using their plastic bag, suspicion was the only logical conclusion. I read recently that the powers are designing software which will use some sort of AI in combination with the multitude of CCTV cameras to analyse the movements of people and earmark those who do not fit the regular norm and might therefore be terrorists. Maybe in the not so distant future, trying to save mother earth from having to swallow another petroleum product might result in storm troopers cascading from the sky and my face promptly planted on the pavement.