[slight hijack]I work for a film company but also have some independent projects (in the most infant of stages) germinating on the side. Several of my screenplays involve multiple locations (cities) around the U.S. So whenever I’m in one of those cities, I scout around to look for possible real-life locations. This is always very helpful in giving me additional ideas (in story-telling details) as well as lending a greater air of authenticity that I want to convey.
So two years ago I’m arriving in Logan Airport (Boston) for a professional conference, and while I’m waiting for my bags, I decide to take a couple of pictures of the baggage claim area (downstairs, and far away from any gates, ticketing, or security areas), since a critical scene involves the arrival of a group of characters into that airport. It’s really early in the morning (I took a red eye) and nobody’s around, so I take a few pictures (3-4) of luggage conveyors and the end of the tunnel that spits you out into the baggage claim area.
Out of nowhere, this woman comes up to me and asks what I’m doing. Not a security person, just a stranger. I tell her I just wanted a couple pictures of this area, and she proceeds to ask Why? I then explain that I’m scouting locations for a movie I’m involved in (which was theoretically true, even though this movie didn’t exist anywhere outside some pages I’d written). She seemed begrudgingly satisfied and left quietly, though the whole incident creeped me out, since I knew what she was thinking (though, honestly, I would think the place where passengers get off the plane would be of the least interest to terrorists).
Did I mention I’m Middle-Eastern looking? (I’m actually not from there, but everyone mistakes me for it) I understand this was post-9/11 and in the airport that several of the planes took off from, but there was never any doubt that that (and other airport incidents I had at the time) almost certainly wouldn’t have happened if I looked more, uh, American. [/slight hijack]