Static Cling: The Silent Predator


After having hung her coat in our hall closet the other day, JC* arrived home to find a hand towel stuck to the back of it. I still shudder to think what might have happened had she wandered into a Bed, Bath and Beyond store on her way home and was confronted by a security guard. It seems that this problem could be easily remedied by simply moving our laundry basket out of the coat closet, but as it turns out, it’s not that easy to combat this motionless force.

Some stories still haunt me. Years back, I remember reading about a Chicago man who unknowingly got on the 146 bus for his daily commute to work with his daughter’s entire Beanie Baby collection affixed to the back of his cashmere coat. Luckily, the story had a happy ending, as he was able to sell most of them and pay for his daughter’s college education before reaching his stop.

Then, there are those stories (actually, unconfirmed rumors) that lurk in the static cling underground. One tells of a Millennial, with a recent MBA from Stanford, confidently entering the office of a fortune 500 company for his final interview, which was abruptly cut short when the CEO noticed a pair of his girlfriend’s hot pink, Victoria’s Secret panties attached to the back of his Armani suit jacket. As the story goes, after this disastrous incident, millennials banded together in solidarity in an effort to ban the in person interview in favor of an online dialog. Soon after, LinkedIn was born and dryer sheet consumption was at an all-time high; coincidence? I think not.

Even as far back as 2002, The New York Times reported that guerilla marketing tactics involving static cling were unveiled when butterfly decals were discovered on surfaces around New York City to introduce a new Microsoft product. Extremists are now known to carry concealed wire hangers to assist anyone in distress (when the metal is wiggled against a skirt bottom or pant leg, it will release the static). Where will it end?

Static cling may very well be affecting your loved ones as we speak. This silent aggressor knows no boundaries and is lurking within every race and economic level. Let’s work together as a nation and find a way to eradicate it. Ironically, separating ourselves from static electricity may be just the issue we need to bring our country together.


*Who’s who? See “Cast of Characters” on the “About” page.



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