TO CATCH A THIEF (3 may 2006)
In this materialistic society of ours we are increasingly faced with attempts to rob us.
As you may have read in previous weblogs ( click, click), my sweetheart and I have been on the receiving (to use an inadequate expression) end of two attempted robberies -- both of which failed on the part of the robbers.
The first thought that enters my mind after such an incident is that I want to design a bag that looks more or less like this:
You grasp at first sight, I suppose, how my invention works: in the half-open bag there is a clearly visible wallet or purse. As soon as the thief sticks his hand into the bag, the steel jaws snap shut and the injured party had better seek medical help.
I discussed the invention with my sweetheart, who has quite a sensible head on her graceful shoulders. She put forward her misgivings about the fact that the Dutch judges would be less enthusiastic about my invention and would probably reward this original effort to protect my property with a summons, or possibly even with immediate incarceration.
But if the thief hadn't stuck his paw into my bag, nothing would have happened, I argued -- as if my bag had already been made and had served its purpose.
My sweetheart agreed with me, but the judge wouldn't, she feared.
So much sympathy with the perpetrator is not considered normal in all parts of the world. In South Africa rapes seem to be commonplace. That's why Sonette Ehlers, a South African inventor, devised a kind of sheath which is inserted into the vagina by a woman who fears to be raped.
If the rapist tries to put his phallus into her, the sheath has internal hooks that trap the male member, so that the malefactor (no pun intended) has little other choice than to visit a hospital in order to get the device removed.