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OP-ED: What You Can Steal From Van Pelt


cc // Nick Weiss

Have you ever wondered why the security guards at Van Pelt check your backpacks and don’t seem concerned with much else? What are they actually looking for? Won’t the alarm sound if a book with a sensor is in my bag? Isn’t modern day technology better than manual screening and doesn’t Van Pelt have it? Where are the sensors anyway? 

I decided to take matters into my own hand In order to answer this decades old question. I traveled to Petsmart and purchased the cheapest animal I could find: a pet mouse. When leaving Van Pelt, the security guard looked in my bag and said “Please bring the mouse back to the Commons kitchen.” 

Next time I went, I took as much food as I could from the library basement and put it in my backpack - it was stuffed. The security guard looked in my bag and asked “Can I have a bite?” 

Picking up on minor discrepancies, I realized two things - 1) they were only concerned with my backpack and 2) they were only concerned with non food, non animal matters. Therefore, I gave it one last go and I walked out with a chair. Because my chair was in my hand and not my backpack, the security did not notice. Lastly, I conducted the ultimate test: taking books from the library. As I confidently walked out the alarm sounded.

**Update I am banned for life from Van Pelt