Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Anti-Pickpocket Wallet

A wallet that interferes with criminals' income
 
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When traveling in Europe, tourists are advised to hide their money and credit cards, wear a strap-on-under-shirt wallet pouch, or otherwise do uncomfortable things with their cash. This doesn't ruin the tourist experience, but it does make you question every person who walks by you or stands next to you on the train.

So I suggest that instead, male tourists carry a wallet with a mouse trap-like device inside. When closed (and in your back pocket), it looks like a regular billfold. During the unfolding process, a metal bar is pulled across the inside and latched into place. When fully open, this is just like a mousetrap. Touching the inner part of the wallet will release the spring-loaded bar, clamping it down upon the pickpocket with painful consequences.

Hopefully, enough people will carry these that pickpockets begin to think twice about "liberating" your personal cash, because it might just break their fingers (again).

For added realism, the wallet would come with two dollars, a picture of someone pretty, and two fake credit cards already installed. Attempting to remove them would also trigger the snap-action.

It would come in several styles and colors.

My girlfriend is in Prague right now, and her father was just picked on a crowded train...this serves as the inspiration for the idea.

shapu, Sep 02 2004

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       Ha!
Machiavelli, Sep 02 2004
  

       I'm hesitant to bun this, because I know five seconds after placing it in my pocket I'd absent-mindedly confuse it for the genuine article. Maybe anxiety isn't enough to ruin a vacation, but a series of welts across your hand sure is.
Aude Sapere, Sep 02 2004
  

       Yeah, it would probably take some practice. But then, many of us learned to drive stickshifts after learning on automatic transmissions, so I'm sure this wouldn't be TOO hard.
shapu, Sep 02 2004
  

       //When traveling in Europe// Do you not have pickpockets in the land of 'stickshifters*', then? Us non USians could resemble that remark!.
Not a bad idea though, [shaps], it's a shame that you wouldn't be there for the final denoument though!
  

       *Note for non USians:
Automatic = bumpercar (dodgem)
Stickshifter = proper car.
Just my fun!
gnomethang, Sep 02 2004
  

       Once pickpockets start realizing that people are carrying these, they won't stop taking wallets, they'll just be more carefull opening them.
scad mientist, Sep 02 2004
  

       Actually, that might be kinda funny too...seeing a few people, all seated around a fountain, each of them slowly opening and peering into something soft and leatherlike, with worried expressions on their faces. I'd pay just for that.   

       [gnomethang]: Yeah, I'm sure we have them, but I never watch travel shows about cities here in the US. I'd much rather learn more about Swiss wines than the glories of Independence Hall.
shapu, Sep 02 2004
  

       Swiss wines?? Now i *AM* confused.
gnomethang, Sep 02 2004
  

       The swiss have much better wines than the French - they just export far less.
shapu, Sep 02 2004
  
      
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