Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Smelly smoke bench

Bench that is virtually un-burnable.
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There's nothing quite like a trip to the local park, or forest. The fresh air, the campfire rings and barbecue pits, the lovely natural wood benches...

Hey! Where are the natural wood benches?!? Oh, some jerks decided to shove them in the fire ring and burn them... instead of gathering wood for ten minutes from the downed three right there, or spendign five bucks to buy some.

Replacement benches of plastic, or cement lack the water permeability, structural give, and thermal insulation provided by the wood benches. It just isn't the same. What to do?

Obviously, we soak the wood in chemicals. First, we soak it in flame-retardant chemicals so that it can barely burn at all. Then we soak it again, in other chemicals so that when it is subjected to fire, it gives off a billowing cloud of brightly colored, and highly malodorous fumes.

The rangers can then get a better idea of who has been tampering with the benches, and get the bad apples out.

ye_river_xiv, Dec 27 2011

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       Maybe a liberal application of nitric acid would give you a bench that burns a bit too well.   

       Of course this wouldn't stop the plonkers trying to put it on the fire - but this way they'll only try it once.   

       [+] for doing something about prats who shouldn't be allowed anywhere near a fire.
Wrongfellow, Dec 27 2011
  

       What [21Q] said last. Add a few kilos of ball bearings, just to make sure.
8th of 7, Dec 27 2011
  

       I wouldn't have burnt them except I just had to know what brightly colored and highly malodorous smoke they would make. And guess what color it makes when you burn a red smoke bench and a green smoke bench at the same time??
bungston, Dec 27 2011
  

       I've seen the chain anchors... usually without the benches. Out here, there are a lot of nearly unmarked campsites, not much regulation, and a lot of campers who apparently have bolt cutters or hacksaws.   

       Also there's a bunch of bleeding heart liberals who won't let you dig the hole needed to pour the concrete, for fear that you might damage a tree root, or dig up an indian burial.
ye_river_xiv, Dec 28 2011
  

       There's your answer, then. Instead of chaining the bench down, chain a whiny hand-wringing pinko bleeding heart liberal to it. If anyone tries to steal the bench, they get a high-minded lecture on morals, and with luck the liberal will either starve to death, or (better) be eaten by a bear. It's a win-win scenario !
8th of 7, Dec 28 2011
  

       Not necessarily win-win. Even bears can't survive on all fibre but no protein.
AusCan531, Dec 28 2011
  

       No one. That is why I said "not necessarily" instead of "inevitably not".
AusCan531, Dec 28 2011
  

       I would suggest soaking the picnic bench wood in a magnesium chloride solution. It is totally non hazardous but very hygroscopic so would make the wood virtually unburnable. I believe they used to use such a technique on mine timbers.
AusCan531, Dec 28 2011
  

       Or how about mercury chloride, and put up warning signs.   

       Why does it have to be non-toxic?
Custardguts, Dec 28 2011
  

       Because non-table-burning folk are going to be placing their peanut butter and jellyfish sandwiches on it or licking up spilled custard and such.
AusCan531, Dec 28 2011
  

       "collateral damage" we call that. The scheme should still be proportionally more lethal to the table-burners, thus a natural-selection process should eventually eliminate that population.   

       It's the goal, not the journey.
Custardguts, Dec 29 2011
  

       Acceptable losses and whatnot? Hmm...
ye_river_xiv, Dec 29 2011
  
      
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