Revenge of the stickers

Recently I wrote an essay about trying to get price stickers off the front of picture frames, and I poked some good-natured fun at those stickers. I thought it was understood that I meant all that in a jesting vein, and that I harbored no ill-will toward stickers in general. Apparently, though, I offended the Sticker Nation, because now they’re attacking me.

I got a mock-turtleneck from my mother-in-law for Christmas. She ordered it from an online retailer. When I brought the shirt home, I washed it and hung it up in my closet. Today, I pulled it out to wear to work.

Nothing prepared me for the horror I was about to experience.

A moment ago, I was sitting at my desk, looking over some very important documents (read: playing Minesweeper to kill time) and absently scratching my chest. And I realized, with something akin to shock, that there was a hard patch right in the middle of the shirt, close to my heart. I stuck my hand down the front of the mock-turtleneck (which is not an easy thing to do, especially when you’re trying to be unobtrusive at work), and found a weird sticker clinging to the inside of the fabric. And – I cannot stress this enough – it was CLOSE ENOUGH TO MY HEART TO KILL ME AT ANY MOMENT.

My first thought was that I’d found one of those odd “Inspected by Number 12” stickers that you see on clothes sometimes. I used to wonder about those people who did the inspecting; did they REALLY inspect the clothes, or did they just slap their stickers on them without looking and call it a day? I know which one I’d be tempted to do, but maybe clothes inspectors are made of sterner stuff than I am. Maybe they train for months or years to earn that Inspector title, and their pride won’t let them just approve any old clothes. Maybe they take clothes-inspection as seriously as I take playing Minesweeper instead of working.

At any rate, that’s what I thought the sticker was … at first. But when I really looked at it, I realized: ***This is a sticker unlike any that has ever been seen before. * **

(Cue dramatic music.)

For starters, this sticker isn’t the usual square or circular shape you normally see on inspection stickers. No, it’s more of a rectangle, except the short sides have a funny little bulge in them, as though this rectangle was pregnant with twins. It’s maybe three-quarters of an inch long, from bulge to bulge. And there’s no “Inspected By” message on here at all. There’s just a red arrow printed on the sticker. An arrow that was positioned inside the shirt so that it pointed DIRECTLY AT MY HEART.

But that’s not even the worst part. I didn’t tell you this before, because I didn’t want to alarm you unnecessarily. But now that you know this much, I feel it’s my duty to let you in on everything:

THERE IS WRITING ON THE STICKER.

It’s in blue ink, cursive, rather thin and spiky-looking. It appears to be a single word, but for the life of me I can’t read it. It could be “Linda.” It could be “hurdle.” It could be “heeda,” which I believe is sticker-language for “Shove the sword right here.” Which, coupled with the red arrow POINTING AT MY HEART, makes me a little nervous.

So now I’m worried about stickers. I’ve got them angry at me. If you stop and think about it, they’re everywhere. Little round ones on fruit at the grocery store. Big honkin’ price stickers on the windows of new cars. Square, yellow sticky notes that are all over every office in America. I don’t know where I can go to be safe.

And what if it’s not just stickers? What if tape is on their side, too? We’ve got several rolls of tape at the house, left over from wrapping Christmas presents. What if the tape attacks me tonight, while I’m sleeping? Will I even wake up?

My God … I just realized, I’ve got a roll of big round stickers sitting behind me, in my drawer, with our company logo on them. If they come at me, I won’t have time to even finish typing this warning. That roll must be twelve feet long if it’s an inch.

Don’t mock the stickers, my friends! Be careful as you check the fruit at the store! Watch out for the yellow stic

I bet you have a bunch of Post-It notes, too… :smiley:

Sauron, you rock.

:eek: OH MY GOD! They got him!

Quick, somebody get the Xacto knives!

One of those little inspector-sticker fuckers got me the other day, right over my heart! I thought at first that there was a problem with my underwire bra, but no! A little sticker. A very small sticker with…a…14 on it! And some very, very sharp corners! Fortunately, I stealthily stuck my arm down my t-shirt and peeled the little bastard off by one of its sharp corners before it knew what I was doing! ::whew:: Safe at last.