Warning! This post contains references to armpits, duct tape and [FEMININE PRODUCTS]. Proceed at your own risk.
In today's Journal is a story on the Liberty Bowl not allowing artificial noisemakers to be brought in, which of course means Mississippi State fans will not be allowed to bring their beloved cowbells for the Sept. 1 game at Memphis. Not that some silly stadium policy is going to stop them.
So I solicited advice from my readers and Twitter followers for suggestions on how to sneak cowbells past security, and y'all did not disappoint.
As of Monday, MSU had already sold 4,700 tickets to the season opener, and more are being snapped up by State fans via the Memphis ticket office. I imagine a few cowbells will find their way into the Liberty Bowl, and for those who need advice, consider the following to be your Guide for Covert Cowbell Operations.
• The most common approach, as tweeted by @darkcooger: "Paper towel in the bell, handle down the back of the pants, shirt tail over the bell. Easy!"
However, @ALewis289 said that gate checkers are "wise to the untucked shirt trick" and suggested hiding it in your boot. And I'm not sure about this one, but @bthompson13's method is to tuck it under his armpit, handle down.
• There's the Cowbell Leg, which best I can tell is not a real product. I called the number and got some online education place. But here's the video. I think that would sell.
It certainly seems less painful than what @Nameless306 described: "I've seen someone pull a bell out of their shorts they had duct taped to their thigh." Duct tape on the thigh? I believe that's what they call a redneck wax job.
• Ladies can't always use the tape-it-to-the-leg trick, because they might be wearing A) skinny jeans, B) really short shorts, or C) a dress/skirt. Or can they?
"We duct tape them under their dresses with tissue in them! They can only search so far!" said @Amar4_20_87. Well then.
Not wanting to divulge specifics, @weslittle said, "Let's just say my wife walks funny going in to the games." Your wife appreciates your discretion, I'm sure.
• You could use the secret agent approach. "In college my wife had a purse with a false bottom," said @KielRedmond, and frankly, there's no telling what else she had in there.
• Along those same lines, fans with infants have the advantage of a diaper bag. That method's been used by @shannoneubanks, who said, "Must have a screaming infant for effectiveness."
• There's always the option of hiding it under a coat or sweatshirt, but since this will be Sept. 1 in Memphis, @jparkerdavis suggests a rain jacket draped over the arm with the cowbell in one of the pockets. Note: The 10-day forecast says there is 0 percent chance of rain in Memphis on Sept. 1, but it's the South, so you never know.
• Emailer Justin Aultman said he makes and sells cowbells with handles that you can screw off and on (see above picture). As he describes it so well, "the handle is a threaded pipe that screws into coupling that's welded on the bell." Simple but effective.
• Finally, my favorite suggestion comes via an emailer who wished to remain anonymous. I will say that it was a female. Her two suggestions (slightly edited):
1) Less aggressive – Never carry the cowbell in a purse; a kid’s backpack is better. They don’t get searched as thoroughly. I found Bob the Builder and Finding Nemo backpacks to be most effective.
2) More aggressive – Put cowbell in bottom of kid’s backpack wrapped in kid’s clothes. Pack the rest of the bag with more than just a few [FEMININE PRODUCTS]. The search stops quickly.
I guess we'll know whether Liberty Bowl security is being truly diligent if they start slinging [FEMININE PRODUCTS] around.