I bought a lockbox the other day. I don't know why. The only person that locks have ever kept out of something that's mine is me.
I refuse to put anything of value inside the lockbox for fear of never seeing it again. Some day, my heirs will come across a dusty old lockbox in my effects (junk), crack it open with anticipation, and find a moldy walnut, the extra buttons from the bottom of my shirt, a pen that's run out of ink, and the lockbox keys.
The gold - if I had had any - would have been the paperweight holding down the stocks and bonds - if I had had any - on top of my desk.
I've stashed the locking drawer underneath my desk at work. The keys are in the tray. If the drawer gets fixed, I'll never get into my desk again.
A thief once swiped both my bicycle and the lock. I hadn't ridden the bike for two weeks because the lock jammed and was impossible to open. So I thought.
In junior high, someone swiped my padlock. I yanked open my locker door for the first time that semester to find papers, books, coats, gloves and old lunches strewn everywhere. Exactly the way I'd left it.
When I locked my keys inside my car in a police station parking lot, an officer whipped out a metal bar and had it unlocked before I could finish dying of embarrassment.
"How do you lock a keyless remote inside your car?" he asked.
"Talent," I said. I just have no talent for opening things. Usually, I just fiddle with a coat hanger for two or three hours until a kindly car thief stops by and helps.
Burglars have never broken into my home. But I have. Several times. Outside of the time I got stuck in the garage window, it wasn't bad.
"If you keep losing your keys, why lock the doors?" a buddy asked.
"Breaking in is the only time I get exercise," I said.
I have discovered that for lock-challenged persons like me, it's safer to stay dressed at all times, even in the shower.
One chilly morning in college, I stripped to my towel, dropped the room key into my shaving kit and padded down the hall to the dorm shower room.
When I emerged, I reached for my towel and shaving kit. The towel I had. The kit I'd forgotten. My room key was safe and sound, locked inside my room where no one could get it. Particularly a soggy me.
The quad office happened to be across the commons. Judging from the hooting and hollering, you would think students had never seen a sopping sophomore wearing nothing but a Star Wars towel sprint barefooted through the dew before.
But they had. It was at least the third time that semester alone.
As I dripped on the office counter, the young woman sighed and passed me the usual bundle - spare key, spare shorts and spare T-shirt.
"That does it. We're sending maintenance."
"To change my lock?" I asked.
"No, to remove it. We've been getting complaints about you sleeping in the hallway."
"Thanks," I said. "By the way, you wouldn't happen to remember my password for the computer network would you?"
I tried to bolt out the office before she could snap me with my own towel, but I'd accidentally locked the door when I came in, and, well
---- Help Burt find his keys at the firstname.lastname@example.org or the Burton W. Cole page on Facebook. His first novel, "Bash and the Pirate Pig," is available at bookstores and Amazon.