We live in dangerous times. Well, not really. Actually, life in the 21st century is safer than ever before. This, however, doesn't stop people from selling and buying overpriced and often useless self-defense products.
While most of the stuff on the market will simply gather dust on your shelf/purse/man-bag that's not actually a purse, some of these real products seem a hell of a lot more dangerous to the owner than the mugger.
#13. Cell Phone Stun Gun
Say you're yapping away on your cell at the mall, when that burly guy with a surfboard asks you to please kindly shut the fuck up. Little does he know, your "phone" is actually a 950,000 volt pacifier, your ex-wife is his current girlfriend, and "you" are actually a schizophrenic and a danger to society.
Granted, only a lunatic would own this thing. But you can see immediately the problem even a well-meaning person is going to have with "The Pretender" cell phone stun gun. She's driving at night, her real cell phone rings, she digs around in her purse and pulls out her "phone."
Of course, multiple fail-safes are in place to ensure you do not accidentally shock yourself in the head. 1) The device has to be on and 2) You have to push the button. Yes, that's it. Good luck not zapping yourself retarded.
#12. Vending Machine Disguise
Yes, it's from Japan.
Most of us dismissed this as a silly Photoshop hoax when we saw it, but, no, it's a real product according to The New York Times.
There apparently is a certain class of inventor who sees something work in a cartoon, then scratches his chin and says, "Why not?" Well, how about the fact that in order for this thing to actually fool someone, they'd have to be so far away from it that you'd be safe from attack anyway? Or that it makes it impossible to run away? Or that you'd have to not only carry this bulky thing around, but also a case of Cokes in case somebody drops in some change while you're hiding?
#11. Bulletproof Briefcase
Hey, this is a good idea. A briefcase with bulletproof plates embedded in it. If a firefight breaks out on your way to the office from Starbucks, you'll be safe. Or, more specifically, a three-foot-long rectangular area will be safe. Notice that in the demonstration, we are forced to choose whether we want to protect the head or the crotch:
Yep, this thing only gives you enough coverage to either protect your life, or your will to live. Not both. The best part is, your attackers get to watch you make this truly fateful choice in real time.
#10. The Electrified "No-Contact" Jacket
Here's a fashionable jacket that will send 80,000 volts through anybody that touches your torso. Somehow the people at No-Contact have magically engineered this thing so that it won't shock you if, say, your own hand or face brushes the electrified sleeve during the struggle. They did do that, right? Because otherwise this would be one of the most retarded things ever invented.
Once they start mass marketing this thing (it doesn't say when that'll happen) it's just a matter of time until somebody with antisocial tendencies activates it and jumps into a crowded swimming pool.
#9. Lipstick Knife
We hope we're not degrading women when we wonder what exactly is the ratio of "successful mugger woundings" to "accidental mouth stabbings" with the lipstick knife.
Are we out of line when we speculate that it's the self defense industry that hates women? Let's see if we can find some more evidence ...
#8. Tampon Taser
Ah, here it is. Gosh, what could go wrong with this imitation tampon container, that fires out tampons that are actually electrified darts? Nothing that our completely not-obscene minds can picture. Nothing at all.
Once again, this is not a cheap Photoshop prank. It's a real invention that was, unsurprisingly, designed by a man.
Here's what we can't figure out: what's the difference between having a Taser that's shaped like something else, and just having a Taser that's shaped like a Taser? It's dark, you've pulled an object out of your purse, and you're aiming it at your attacker menacingly while screaming, "EAT THIS FUCKER." The thing could be shaped like a rubber trout, the guy's still going to shoot you.
#7. Shotgun Flashlight
Now we're getting serious, gents. Forget about incapacitating your attackers with electricity or defending yourself until the cops arrive. This flashlight modified to fire a .410 shotgun shell is just what you need to blow a four-inch hole in your attacker's chest. Take that, crime!
Hey, it works as a flashlight, too! And the gun part of it points out the back! So every time you use your flashlight, you've got a goddamned shotgun pointing at your heart!