Tadpole's Outdoor Blog

September 23, 2012


Filed under: Neal Murphy — Freddie Keel @ 6:06 am






It all started innocently enough. My wife drove to a neighboring city and purchased some new clothing for her birthday.  I had given her a gift certificate from a particular store that she likes.  So, she returned home with several new items which she showed me proudly.  That evening she was picking out the clothes she wanted to wear the next day.  That’s when it was discovered.

The new black sweater still had the store security tag attached.  “Look”, she said, “the store clerk forgot to take off the security tag.  I wonder why it did not go off at the security check when I left?  Now I am going to have to drive back up to the store to get it removed.”

“Did you keep the receipt?”, I inquired.  “Sure, it’s right here”, she said holding it up in front of my face.  “I think the store employees will still be a little suspicious of this”, I advised.  “I can take that thing off in a jiffy and you won’t have to take it back”, I bragged.  I am not sure why I was so confident as I have little knowledge of security tags.  It seems that they are made of rather soft plastic which should succumb to a hammer easily.  I was wrong.

“Well, I want to wear my new black sweater in the morning”, she advised me. So, being the good husband I am I said, “Give me the sweater and I will go get some tools”.  I picked out a couple of screw drivers and a pair of needle-nosed pliers.  No amount of prying and tugging would loosen the tag.  I did not bother to read the warning printed on the outside cover.

Since the first tools wouldn’t work, I decided to bring out the trusty hammer.  One well-placed heavy blow should shatter the tag and free the garment.  I was wrong again.  I placed the garment on the kitchen counter over a towel and gave the tag a hard blow.  I did not know that some of these tags have black ink inside.  Now I do.  The outside cover of the tag shattered but also sprayed black ink on the counter and up on the wallpaper.  The ink also had a sickening smell to it.  Now, I was beginning to feel like a thief.

Although a variety of stuff – ink, electronic coils, and broken glass now covered our kitchen counter, the security tag was still holding on.  After cleaning up the mess, I advised my wife that she should wear something else tomorrow and I would work on that tag out on the patio concrete.  “Ok”, she warned, “but don’t ruin the sweater in the process.”

The next day I took the sweater with the attached tag out to the patio and laid it on the concrete. I reasoned that one really hard blow with my hammer should free the garment.  I was again wrong.  Now it was getting personal.  How could a couple of pieces of plastic be so contrary?

I hit the tag a hard blow and more pieces flew off, but still attached.  Dang!  Another even harder blow was needed, to heck with the sweater.  This thing was not going to defeat me.  Finally the security tag fell off, the sweater was free, free at last.  The garment might not be wearable, but I got the tag off and that was what mattered.

A close examination of the sweater showed no damage, only the white tag in the back was now black, but it could not be seen while being worn.  I have promised myself that I will never go through this process again.  Any more security tags left on a garment will be taken back to the store for proper removal, or better yet, we will make certain that the clerks remove the tags in the first place.  Those tags are awesome things.





PO BOX 511




Cell: 936-275-6086

Email: sugarbear@netdot.com

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