SWAT Team Summoned over Samurai Sword Umbrella

Over in the NeatoShop, we sell an umbrella that has a handle similar to those found on Japanese samurai swords. One college student in Atlanta owns one (although he didn't get it from us), and when police heard that a student in a dorm had a sword, they surrounded the building and evacuated it. The owner's girlfriend reports:

The officer then asked me to describe him, so I proceeded to describe his hair color, height, eye color, and build. The officer interrupted, "Did this person have a weapon?" Through my nervousness I perceived what the situation was about.

I replied, "He had an umbrella that looked like a weapon. It looks like a samurai sword."

The officers looked at each other. One of them said, "An umbrella?" to which I replied affirmatively. I then helpfully volunteered, "I can call him to come right back over."


Link via Gizmodo

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Sounds like a perfectly reasonable response actually. I blame the police reaction on the dude that was carrying it around. Yes, it is not a real sword. No, that does not mean you can carry it around in a way that makes it appear real without accepting that you might freak some people out. Looking at the product page, I can definitely understand why someone would freak out.
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I recently bought this kind of item (not from neato-shop, but in hongkong), I took the plane with it.
Well, except in the french customs, I had no real problem: many people just looked at me with a kind of "is it or is it not?" look.

french cop just asked me "is it a real blade?" with a smile.

This stuff makes you look special indeed :)
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