Is that your lugging ticking’

Somewhere on the Internet is a web site called “The Darwin Awards”. As I recall these are examples of some of the stupid things that humans do in the course of our lives. I don’t have time to recite some of their examples, but trust me, if you ever look them up or run across them, you’ll wonder if people can really be this dumb.

I am here to tell you that, yes they can be.

Take for example this latest piece of news from France. It seems the airport police at the Charles De Gaulle airport wanted to test their security systems using their sniffer dogs. The exercise was to plant a small amount of real explosive material in a piece of luggage and then have the dogs search for it and hopefully find it. This sounds reasonable and certainly worthwhile, doesn’t it’

However this is where the plan goes somewhat off kilter. The police officers place the real explosives in the bag of some unsuspecting tourist without making a note of who owned the bag or where the bag was headed. I suspect by now, you are beginning to see what is going to happen.

Yes, friends, in the words of Mr. Zenon Murphy…”Anything that can go wrong…will go wrong.” Or something to that effect…perhaps said by Murphy in his famous “Murphy’s Law”.

Anyway, so the French airport police put a package of explosives inside of some unsuspecting tourist’s luggage, send it down the belt to see if the bomb sniffing dogs can find it, and when the dogs overlook it, the bag gets sent out to a plane headed… for where’ They have no idea.

As I said they didn’t make a note of who owned the bag or where the bag might be going. Airport officials admit that there were over 100 flights leaving during this time frame and the bag could have been placed on any of these. “Not to worry,” said one of the officials…since “There wasn’t anyway for the explosives to go off since there wasn’t a detonator of any sort attached.”

Isn’t that comforting’ Gives you a warm and fuzzy feeling doesn’t it’

The possibility of the explosives going off isn’t a real threat as far as I’m concerned. What would scare the dickens out of me and should be of some concern to all involved is the possibility of some little old lady from Pasadena owning the piece of luggage and then going through another airport somewhere in the world where the dogs might be a little bit more experienced. Imagine what is going to happen to her when the dogs sniff out a bomb in her luggage lying in between her Depends, Ben Gay and Fix-O-Dent. It boggles the mind, doesn’t it’ I think we can all see what can happen in this situation. Some little old lady being led out of the airport in handcuffs, being photographed and labeled as a terrorist threat to our country. Television reporters go wild trying to dig up everything on her from the time she was born until the present. Everything about her past would be subject to intense scrutiny. That wild tennis instructor from Des Moines that she dated one summer at the lake would be interviewed on Larry King and asked if he could see any indication of terrorist behavior back in 1918. It would make a great movie.

This is a lawsuit waiting to happen. A plaintiff’s law firm’s dream. This would be the el primo case for some lucky firm and their partners.

So what is my solution’ Glad you asked.

Perhaps this is a little bit simplistic, but considering the fact that we believe dogs are colorblind, why not use a big red bag with super large letters on it saying something like…”Police…Do Not Touch”’ I mean the last I heard, dogs can’t read, so what would be the harm’ It’s not like some obvious color or some wording would tip the dogs off that they were being tested, would it’ I mean, if dogs can’t tell which bag is real and which one is a test, it isn’t likely that they will point to the bag and talk (or bark) among themselves, is it’

If this wasn’t an option then how about something as simple as writing down the name of the person whose bag they were using as well as their flight number’ How difficult is this’did I mention that this happened in France’

Go figure.