I had six pieces of luggage to tag for our 2010 trip to Manila–four for check-in and two for hand-carry. I wanted tags that would make the bags easy to spot in the overhead bin and on the baggage carousels at the airports.
The last trips we took, I just tied colorful shoelaces on the handles; this time I wanted something bold and calling for attention even from afar (okay, even when we’re not wearing our bifocals).
I searched the Internet for vendors of attractive and innovative luggage tags but ended up thinking, “Hmmm… I could make my own!” So, yes, there I was again, making my own.
There was some spare yellow leatherette in the garage–the cover of a golf bag that we had inherited and disposed of. With a few drawings and mock-ups, and some sewing machine and printer action, I made myself six lemon yellow luggage tags with Stormtrooper and Boba Fett logos in tune with the Rosero Star Wars Wedding we’re attending in Manila.
As we moved along the security line at the Orlando International Airport, one of the TSA inspectors stared at one of the luggage tags. I think it was the Boba Fett helmet logo that caught his attention. Obviously, by the suspicious angle of his eyebrows, he had no idea what he was looking at. I half expected him to call me aside, but he didn’t.
When we landed at Detroit, a flight attendant helped me pull my hand-carry from the overhead bin. He saw the luggage tag and said, “Boba Fett.” I smiled at him and said, “Well, the TSA guy at Orlando didn’t recognize him.” And the flight attendant replied, “What? He didn’t recognize the most famous imperial bounty hunter?” We gave each other the secret wink and went our separate ways.
At the Orlando baggage carousel on the homeward leg, we were the last to claim our bags because we took our time getting off the plane and trekking about a mile to baggage claim. Our checked bags had all been set aside, next to the room of the baggage marshals.
When we presented our claim stubs, the marshal looked at our bags and said, “Somebody likes Star Wars.” And I said, “Ye, we just came from a Star Wars wedding!” The marshal’s face lit up. He released our bags and gave me the secret wink. Then we loaded our bags on the carts and wheeled away to the limo service that took us home… from a galaxy far, far away.