Introduction: How to Catch a Panda
Something was getting into my garbage at night. I also believe whatever it is has been pirating my wi-fi. Despite what those naysayers at Animal Control or Virginia Department of Fish and Game said, I was pretty sure it was a panda bear. Perhaps it had escaped from a nearby zoo, or maybe the guy across the street left his gate open again, either way my garbage cans were being knocked over, there was trash all over my driveway, and Farmville has been running extra slow. So I developed a plan.
Step 1: Materials
This can all be assembled with a few simple household items
What you will need:
Knife or scissors
Chair (I did not add a picture of a chair, as I feel that if you don't know what a chair looks like, your time could be better spent than in the pursuit of panda bears)
Cardboard box (preferably a refrigerator box. I wasn't about to buy a new refrigerator just to do this, so I made do with what I had)
Duct tape (I used um...Monkey tape? Chimp tape? Something like that)
Small Bungee cord
A few small lengths of 20 gauge wire
Small light bulb (big bulb if you are using a refrigerator box)
Bit of string
plutonium rod (optional)
Semtex (or any other C4 plastic explosive derivative)(optional)
Kitchen timer (optional)
For demonstration safety purposes we used Sculpey in place of the plastic explosive. The Plutonium is real.
Step 2: Initial Assembly
Cut out three sides on one end of the box leaving one side as a flap. Cut a small slit about an inch from the hinge of the flap, just big enough to insert one end of the bungee cord. Cut another slit in the other end near the top edge of the box to feed the other end of the bungee through. Then take a bit of the wire and fashion a ring for the hook of the bungee to grab. Make sure there is enough tension to hold the flap closed.
Step 3: Setting the Trigger
This is where it get's tricky. Cut a slit on the top of the box (the same side as the hinge of the flap) about 2/3 of the way to the other end from the door. Insert a light bulb through this hole so it hangs down on the inside. Feed a string down through the hole so that it sits snug with the light bulb and hangs about halfway to the floor. If this does not hold the string you may also tie a small stick to the string on the inside to keep the string from feeding through. I tried to explain this to the wife but she insisted it was unnecessary. Divorce proceedings are imminent. The end of the string sticking out of the top of the box should have a knot tied on the end. Cut a slit in the center of the end of the flap and slide the string on to it to hold the flap open. Now put the chair and the book inside the box. When the panda enters the box to sit and read the book, it will pull the string to turn on the light, which will release the door trapping the panda inside! As it will be too dark inside the box to read the book, the panda will get bored quickly and fall asleep.
Step 4: Optional Atomic Device
It isn't necessary to kill the panda once it is caught. You may simply drive it to the neighbor's house and release it in their yard. Maybe that'll keep them damn kids from stealing my tomatoes. But if you choose to humanely eliminate this poster child for all endangered species, the below instructions should help.
Duct tape the kitchen timer and Semtex to the plutonium rod. Wire the kitchen timer to the Semtex. Then glue the device to the box. You will have to experiment with different ratios of Semtex to plutonium to find what combination works best for you. Ideally you want a big enough explosion to vaporize the box, but not so big as to decimate the neighborhood or your car. Use your best judgement. You will need to configure it so when the trap is sprung, the timer will begin the countdown. I don't know how to do this, some things you're just going to have to figure out for yourself.
On an interesting side note, if you Google "The More You Know" and "Richard Grieco" you may come across a Youtube video featuring a public service announcement with the following quote: "Playing with low yield nuclear weapons may seem like fun at first, but every year hundreds of children are hurt or killed attempting such devices. Never play with weapons grade plutonium without permission from a grownup."
Step 5: Trap Placement
The key to catching a panda is to knowing where to place the trap. For me it was by the trash cans. For you it may be in the back yard, under the deck, or the luggage claim area at the airport. Study up on panda habits and this should be no problem.
To increase your odds of success, try to camouflage the box, or employ some minor subterfuge (see below). With these tricks up your sleeve, you should be an expert in panda safari in no time!
If it has been a while and you haven't yet caught a panda, you may want to change the book. Or maybe use a more comfortable chair.