Kids' TV hosts terrorism-stopped for pew-pewing with sparkly hair-dryers

Andrew sez, "The presenters from British TV channel ITV's Toonatik were filming in London wearing safety gear and brandishing hairdryers. Of course, this presents a danger to Queen and Country, so the ever-vigilant Met held them and issued them a warning under the anti-terrorism act. And Londoners survive another day!"
"Jamie and I were kitted out in fake utility belts. We've got hairdryers in our belt, a kids' walkie-talkie, hairbrushes and all that kind of stuff, and we were being followed by a camera crew and a boom mike and we get literally pulled over by four policemen and we were issued with a warning 'under the act of terrorism'."

Rickers, 32, added: "We were stopped, not arrested, but they had to say 'we are holding you under the Anti-Terrorism Act because you're running around in flak jackets and a utility belt', and I said 'and please put spangly blue hairdryer' and he was, like, 'all right'."

Children's TV Stars Face Anti-Terror Quiz (Thanks, Andrew!)


  1. As I read all of these reports of just how ridiculous things are in England, all I can think is “..this is the country who once had an Empire that spanned the globe?”


    1. As I read all of these reports of just how ridiculous things are in England, all I can think is “..this is the country who once had an Empire that spanned the globe?”

      Globe-spanning empires are built and maintained by violence and repression, not by promoting freedom and democratic ideals.

  2. The camera crew following them around didn’t clue the met off that they were filming a show? I could see the met stopping them to see if they had permits to film in the area (assuming things like that work similar to the states), but for terrorism? WTF?

  3. Meanwhile, in other news, the two thugs with concealed weapons laughed as they saw the commotion and proceeded on their way to their next hit.

    A pusher later interviewed, says business has never been better, now that police are paying attention to cameras, annoying tourists and hassling film crews, he can carry on his business with the locals with relative ease.

    His cat burglar flatmate now hires people to walk down the street in simulated flak jackets with oddball equipment and claims he hasn’t been caught in the last three years as urban terrorism has taken a great toll and requires extreme vigilance that for some reason, totally overlooks his activities.

    “It’s funny how one videocam in the street can completely mask me crawling up the side of the building in broad daylight”, he’s reported as saying, “It’s not like the bad old years of the IRA bombings where the police were more vigilant to crime and I spent quite some time behind bars.”

  4. The worst thing about this, I think, is that flak jackets are suspicious. Flak jackets don’t hurt people, do they? They just stop you getting hurt. Famously we had an MP, a cabinet member, tour Downing Street in an anti-stab vest — I doubt anyone was going to stop-and-search *her* for that, though.

  5. Wow! Personal protective equipment is terrorist! I hope those police never wear flack jackets either that would be terrible!

  6. Just wait until they get their shiny new UAVs with hairdryer sensors…

    Couldn’t they just *ask* what’s going on (assuming it wasn’t obvious enough for these smartypants…)? No, out comes the “Anti-Terrorism Act”, *pow*.
    Seriously, is there any common sense left among these folks?

  7. The police here is the same as the US.

    We imported that ridiculous idea of setting targets for everything, missing the point that something like the police relies on common sense.

    So rather than it be a surveillance state its more a pathetic state because its easy to make your numbers stopping people like this.

  8. A British TV host said ‘and he was, like, ‘all right’.” ‘ ??

    The valley girls have conquered the English-speaking world.

  9. In all honesty, wouldn’t a full camera crew and boom operator be the perfect cover for a suicide bomber? No one would suspect them!

  10. “Like” as a way of buying time in speech isn’t new to British english, esp. up north. It has its own local, horrifying heritage.

  11. It’s the same in the US.

    Except here they would have been arrested…

    The hairdryers, you see. Not to mention the fact that they’re sparkly. Very suspicious. Not quite sure what agenda they might have…

    The guy 50 feet away with the AK-47. the one in the camo pants who just pulled the pin on that grenade? Well he’s clearly pretending… he’s just exercising his consitutional rights…

  12. When will the people of the UK get sick of being treated like prisoners or do they actually like it?

    Crime was pretty low under Stalin, probably because most people were either in prison camps, dead, or scared out of their minds. I’d rather have the occasional criminal than a government that treats everyone and every act as a crime.

  13. You folks in the UK have it bad. I’ve only been interrogated by the police in Tucson for using an actual gun-shaped squirt gun outdoors. It was dayglow green but it looked like a real 9mm pistol. And squirted water.

  14. This is not only the country that, as Jaypee says (#2) once ruled a huge empire, it is the country where, forty years ago, such police would have been told by their suspects that they had just fought a war so that the streets of Britain would not be ruled by the likes of them, and they can just push off.

    What has curled up and died, in the face of police, “security” staff, private car clampers and other private armies is the spirit of Britain. Very sad.

  15. ..this is the country who once had an Empire that spanned the globe?

    You don’t pwn the planet without knowing a thing or two about psychological oppression.

  16. Rob B., Joe, I don’t think “like” in this example is a way of buying time. In my dialect, and maybe in this guy’s, “was/were like” means something similar to “said”.

    (1) He was like ‘That’s so cool.’

    It only makes sense with this meaning where you could otherwise say “said.” That works in this context

    (2) and he said ‘all right’
    (3) and he was like ‘all right

    Those are both synonymous and perfectly acceptable to me. This “was like = said” phenomenon is distinct, I think, from the Valley Girl filler word, as in:

    (4) Ohmigawd Her like skirt was like so 2008.

    You obviously couldn’t substitute “said” for “like” in those cases.

  17. I don’t know whether the overuse of “like” is an Americanism or not, but the TV hosts were making a sketch called “dork hunters.” When I was in college, an exchange student from England claimed to be completely baffled by American slang, specifically the word “dork.” Unlike “bloody wanker,” which was perfectly logical and sensible to her.

  18. @ shadowfirebird – I believe it was Peckham that was toured in the flak jacket, not Downing Street. Which makes some, albeit not sufficient, difference.

  19. Overuse of the word “like” happens here in New Zealand. No doubt due to the utter saturation of US media we are exposed to from birth.

  20. No one has commented on the ridiculousness of police issuing people with warnings under an anti-terrorism act. That’s idiotic. If a police officer thinks someone is doing something related to terrorism, he should arrest them. If he concludes that their actions are not part of a terrorist plot, he has no business issuing them with any sort of warning. So either the police are letting potential terrorists go with a warning or they’re hassling innocent people. Imagine if the police started issuing warnings under an “anti-murder” act to people who they thought might be engaging in murder-related activities. What they’re actually doing under this law is just as idiotic as that would be.

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