Coat Hangers, or Anculo Trappus, are native to the United States. They breed in cool, dark places, and have a particular affinity for closets. They are a distant relative of the sock, as socks are considered the larval stage of coat hangers.
Types of Coat Hangers
There are three known types of Coat Hangers:
Africanized ("Killer") Coat Hangers
Africanized Coat Hangers are a vicious breed of wild animal whose natural hunting urge leads them to lie in wait in dark areas and along pathways at night, reaching up to snag ankles and calves with their razor-sharp teeth. While they bear no poison, their bite is quite painful, and may be subject to infection. There have been a few stories of hangers sinking their teeth into more sensitive areas, such as the skin near the eye, but it is easy to guard against such injuries by maintaining a safe distance from the animal.
Despite the risks, households across the world—even those with children—employ millions of these creatures to organize their clothing. Even after the rise of the Domesticated variety, the much cheaper Africanized animal is still in popular use.
Domesticated Coat Hangers
Selective breeding has weeded out the more dangerous qualities of the wild breed, while producing a much healthier, plumper animal better able to bear the weight of heavy clothing without interskeletal injury. Furthermore, creative food additives have produced hangers in a variety of natural skin colors, such as blue, orange, mauve, and chartreuse.
The natural hunting urge has been subverted into a playful desire to trip people, which can hurt them but isn't meant to be harmful. It is certainly a great improvement over the malevolent stalking behavior of the wild breed.
The scientific name for this breed is Anculo Trappus Plasticus.
A much smaller breed of domesticated coat hanger has emerged, called the Dwarf Hanger. This is about half as wide as a regular hanger, and suitable for hanging the clothes of children and midgets. The Dwarf Hanger is remarkable sturdy, and over the course of its life consumes less than half of the resources consumed by a typical hanger.
Hybrid Coat Hangers
Breeding domesticated hangers with their wild counterparts has produced a crossbreed that unfortunately has more in common with the wild breed than with the tame. These creatures are somewhat leaner than their domesticated parents, but fatter than their wild parents, chiefly due to a thick plastic outer skin that covers their inner metallic skin. This skin masks their teeth, which makes bites less injurious, but older creatures may wear off the outer skin at the teeth, making them just as dangerous as their wild parents. The outer skin does not appear to provide any of the benefits of the domestic breed's strength and resilience. Nor have breeders made much progress in getting colorful skin tones: The most common hybrid color is bright white.
Wooden Coat Hangers
While Wooden Coat Hangers may appear to be related to the metallic and plastic varieties, there is merely a superficial resemblance; the two species share no significant DNA. The name was given them under approximately the same circumstances that gave the Panda the appelation "Bear". Merely study the teeth of the Wooden Coat Hanger and you will find a distinct difference: The fangs curl back on themselves in such a way as to practically eliminate the ability to bite. Furthermore, unlike the other species, the Wooden Coat Hanger has a high degree of mobility in its joints, while having strong, even rigid, limbs. Wooden Coat Hangers are often subject to diagonal fractures, whereas the Africanized and Hybrid hangers do not break, and the Domesticated hangers more commonly sustain perpendicular breaks.
The Wooden Coat Hanger is particularly suited to supporting heavy coats, but it is a dying breed, as the Domesticated Coat Hanger does its job almost as well for a fraction of the cost and with a wider selection of color.
The scientific name for the Wooden Coat Hanger is Broddus Shouldurus Sentinello, or "The Broad-Shouldered Sentinel".
Both species of Coat Hangers share an affinity for dark places, such as closets.
Coat hangers, especially the wild variety, gather into large mating balls called "tangles". They prefer to do this in dark places, especially the bottom of closets or the back of storage areas. If left alone, they will continue to mate for several months; some have been observed in the same mating ball for as long as five and a half years.
Africanized coat hangers chiefly hunt in pathways frequented by large game. They attack by jumping up and striking at the ankle. This might be a more effective method of bringing down large prey if the coat hanger were capable of injecting poison. Still, the wound can be deep, may bleed, and may develop infection; doctors recommend washing it well and covering it with a Band-Aid.
Domesticated hangers rely on humans for their sustainance, and no longer hunt for their own food. However, at times they may exhibit hunting behavior, much as the housecat continues to hunt in play. Their attempts at play may trip you, so be careful.
Back in the 50s, the use of wild coat hangers was in vogue, and breeders were just starting to investigate the possibility of healthier domesticated stock. In an attempt to strengthen the thin frame of the wild creature, some farmers took to surgically altering any males not intended for breeding. The surgery became known as "strutting".
To strut a wild coat hanger, the surgeon first amputates a significant segment of the lower limbs, leaving two unconnected limbs. He then bends the ends of the limbs back on themselves, forming two S-curves. A prosthetic limb is attached between the now permanently bent limbs. The prosthetic is thicker and stronger, and has the added advantage of being unable to rust; furthermore, it can be easily detached to make hanging clothes easier for the harried housewife.
The body of the wild coat hanger is too hard for standard-issue needles to penetrate, and too thin to host a good vein structure; also, the coat hanger does not breathe. With no easy way to administer anesthesia, most surgeons do the operation without any sort of pain killer at all. This, of course, is not the only reason that animal rights activists cite when working to ban the procedure.
Oddly, although many groups have fought for legislation to ban the procedure in the United States (among them the Women Activists' Society for the Harassment of Insufferably Negligent Grifters (Managed by Alfred Cliffton, Hubert Iñigo, and Niles Edwards), Dedicated to Restoration, Yea, Equal Restoration, and the EXcellent Treatment of Rare Abnormalities Chiefly Taken for Ontological Research), PETA seems reluctant to join the fight against this obviously sadistic and unnecessary operation.
Alternatives to Strutting
Although the introduction of domesticated stock has made the issue largely moot, enough households still use the cheaper wild hangers that, in an effort to curb the desire for strutted hangers, Laundromat operator Cleo Hopkins invented a humane substitue, the gator guard. The gator guard is functionally similar to the strut prosthetic, but can be placed over the existing limbs, like a saddle or knee guard, without the need for amputation. Many households found them so easy to use that by 1978 strutting was largely eradicated, used only by a small percentage of households (but still almost all major dry cleaning chains).
Due to recent surges in Oil prices, coat hangers have also increased massivley in price. Whilst this has been to the benefit of most, it has led to several 'coat 'em ups' when gangs of junkys raid shops or homes to steal large stock of coat hangers that are later sold on ebay.
Tony Blair had a phobia of coat hangers. He once said 'if I ever see another coat hanger it will be one two many...they're just so unnatural, metal shouldn't bend like that'
The Lehman Brothers, a succesful wall street bank went bankrupt after an employee accidentally ordered 300 'coat hangars' rather than 300 'coat hangers'. The former are massive, 40 acre buildings used for storing coats, and cost around £1million each!
- Although a plant, the Caution wet floor sign exhibits similar stalking behavior. Scientists have yet to domesticate the plant.