Freakiest TSA 'Good Catches' 2011 Remind Us Travelers Can Be Scary Crooks

knife airportNot to sound overly critical, but for the past year or so, I've thought of the TSA as an oppressive, drunk-with-power regime out to make my travel experience a torturous nightmare. That all changed today, when I took a look at the TSA's Top 10 Good Catches of 2011. Yikes! No wonder the TSA is so jumpy ... people try to take some seriously scary items on airplanes!

I guess I just assumed, all this time, that the average traveler didn't generally try to smuggle things like land mines in their carry-on bags. You know, that folks already under FBI surveillance were the ones who usually attempted those types of stunts.

Dear TSA, I was wrong. I'm sorry. I don't care how invasive and thorough my next pat-down is, as long as it keeps this stuff from ending up in the overheard compartment ...


1. Small chunks of C4 explosives. Why this passenger was transporting this powerful explosive, a favorite of terrorists worldwide, is beyond me. I'm just glad his idea of a genius hiding place was a tobacco tin. They'll never look in here!

2. A loaded .380 pistol. Best part? Strapped to a 76-year-old traveler's ankle. Silly grandpa, they don't allow guns on airplanes anymore!

3. Over 1,200 firearms, total. And apparently quite a few are loaded! What really worries me about the one dude who was caught with 2 handguns, 8 knives, 3 ammo magazines, and 1 saw is that he thought he could get past security with 2 handguns, 8 knives, 3 ammo magazines, and 1 saw.

4. Throwing knives. Yup, 2 of 'em ... hidden in a hollowed-out book! Hey, this trick worked when I used to hide Pixy Stix and Big League Chew from my mom ...

5. A flare gun with 7 flares. I shudder to think.

6. A stun gun disguised as a smartphone. Points for creativity! This one really does scare me, though, as it seems like something that could easily slip past the checkpoint undetected. Unlike, you know, a truckload of guns (duh!).

7. Inert landmines. I shudder to think. Again.

8. Tactical spikes. These bad boys were cleverly tucked away in the sock of a serial killer passenger. (Hey, I watch those true crime shows. I know what's up.)

9. A science project. Science project, my Aunt Fanny! That thing is a bomb (you'll see when you check out the photo).

10. Snakes, turtles, and birds. SNAKES ON A PLANE?!?! I had no idea that movie was a documentary. Or that the exotic animal trade was so ... lame.

Do you feel like the TSA's techniques are justified after reading this list?


Image via Brent Payne/Flickr

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