It Came in the Mail

Sunday, August 5, 2007

An occasional look at products the travel industry insists we need.

WHAT: The WordLock, a combination lock that unlocks with a four-letter code word of your choosing, instead of a number code.

HOW MUCH:$10 to $12

AIMED AT: Travelers who need a lock but already have so many numbers cluttering their brain that they fear one more will cause their neurological system to short-circuit.

BUT DOES IT WORK? Yes, unless you choose a vulgar four-letter word as your code. Certain letters have been left out of certain positions in the four-tumbler system to avoid all the vulgar words the lock's designers could think of. By playing around with some of the possible 10,000 combinations of letters, though, we found one off-color word that, in a more innocent age, would have been considered a vulgarity.

Bonus: The WordLock is "TravelSentry" approved, meaning that airport baggage inspectors have a master key so that -- theoretically at least -- they don't have to cut off the lock to inspect your luggage.

-- Cindy Loose

The WordLock is available at Bed Bath and Beyond in Sterling, and online at and

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