Friends don't let friends put metronomes in their backpacks

Over in Cambridge, Sam Seidel recounts the tale of a guy who walked by him, started shaking his backpack and then walked back and asked if his backpack was ticking.

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      Do real bombs tick?

      I think the ticking noise in bombs is supposed to be the timer, but of course a non-mechanical clock (or relatively quiet mechanical clock) would be much easier to install. Maybe it's intended as a safety mechanism for bombs designed for non-criminal purposes, but the whole idea of a ticking bomb does seem a bit impractical and Hollywood. If you don't want your bomb to be found, don't make it loud and conspicuous.

      Which isn't to make fun of the people in the linked article: if a bag is making a repetitive clicking noise for no good reason it's valid reason to be concerned that something weird is up, even if a bomb is a rather unlikely explanation. I'm just curious since now that I think of it it doesn't really make all that much sense.

      Steampunk terrorists

      The Mechanical-American Liberation Society is suspected of using mechanically wound explosive devices. Others say they're just posing.

      If the suspected terrorist seems both wild-eyed and overly style-conscious, alarm might be appropriate.

      Also be on the lookout for bowling balls with sparklers stuck in them. The Hand-Drawn Jihad has been publishing a guide to creating your own infernal devices in the back of Cricket magazine.

      Fun story

      Pretty neat story.

      The letter to the editor was over the top. I couldn't understand why it was written the way it was and why the author had his head so far up the policeman's ass ... until I read it was written by a candidate for city councilor.