How much *do* they know?

Posted in Random thoughts at 10:16 pm by ducky

I drove down to the U.S. today to return Mom’s car. (We’d swapped our car for her minivan in order to carry more people on the Green College Ski trip). I had this unsettling interaction with a U.S. border guard:

Guard: Where are you headed?

Me: To return my mother’s car.

Guard: What’s your mom’s name?

Me: Natalie Sherwood. [Note: Mom’s name changed in this posting for privacy reasons — but I told the guard the truth.]
Guard: Natalie Frieda Sherwood?
Me: Uh, yes.

How did the guard know my mom’s middle name?

The idea I find least objectionable is that they took a picture of Mom’s license plate, did pattern recognition on it, and looked it up in a database of Washington State license plate numbers.

The idea I find most objectionable is that they noticed that Jim and I crossed the border frequently, and had the FBI go check us out.


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