Every year, the TSA releases a list of the most bizarre items confiscated from travelers at airport security checkpoints over the course of the previous year. The 2017 edition just came out, and good lord, it’s a doozy:
If you don’t have time to watch the video, the confiscated items include a hand grenade stuffed inside an old shoe, some sort of BattleBot made out of a grenade and combination padlocks (?), throwing stars, and knives. A whole goddamn boatload of knives. Oh, there’s also a “face tenderizer,” which is pretty much exactly what you’d think it is.
So, naturally, I have some thoughts.
Why are people collecting weapons that have zero practical use? Two of the entries on this list are ninja stars, but I doubt their owners are actual ninjas. (Ninjas can fly on their own, they don’t need airplanes.) Also, have you ever tried to throw a ninja star? It’s hard, man.
I can sort of understand the impulse to try to sneak a knife onto a plane, especially a super-cool knife made of bones (another entry on the list), but grenades? Who thinks they’re going to get away with smuggling a goddamn grenade in a carry-on? It’s a grenade! It has a very distinctive shape!
Also, in (almost) every single case, I can’t help but imagine a weary TSA agent explaining to a neck-bearded guy in a floor-length trenchcoat and (of course) a fedora that they can’t bring their weird-ass stabbing implements onto an airplane. Except for the number one entry on the list, which was a TON of drugs wrapped up like Christmas presents. It’s hard to draw a mental picture of the kind of person who thinks that’s a foolproof plan.