Thursday, December 07, 2006

Silly String goes to war

A woman in Philadelphia is collecting cans of Silly String — plastic goop shot out of aerosol cans — for shipment to Iraq. So far she has over 1,000 cans. The woman, Marcelle Shriver, got the idea of sending the stuff from her son, a soldier in Iraq.

No, the cans are not used for off-duty tension relief. They are actually used on patrol.

The stuff can shoot over 10 feet, which can cross the average room. The soldiers fire a strand and watch it drop. If it hits the floor, that's good. If part of it gets hung up in the air, then it's mostly likely lying across a nearly invisible booby trap wire.

The idea of using Silly String in this way was the result of inspired improvisation by some Marines in Iraq. The U.S. Army learned the idea from the Marines.

Soldiers are encouraged to improvise, and they are sometimes given money to purchase non-regulation supplies if it helps in the field.

Shriver can't mail the cans through the postal service, because they are aerosol cans. However, a private pilot has agreed to fly the cans as far as Kuwait, probably in January.

The story:

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