Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Are You the Keymaster?

When Genius came home for spring break, he had a bit of a mishap upon arrival. While unpacking the truckload of electronic accoutrements that are required to sustain him for eight days, he slammed his hand in the door of his Ford Ranger. Not so much his HAND as his keyring. The keyring that held the key to his dorm room and the suite he shares with three other young geniuses.

His truck key, his locking gas cap key, our house key, and his dorm room key were all fine. The suite key was not. He waited two days to show me the damage. "Look. It's twisted. I think I can make it work. I will push it in the lock, and when it stops, I'll rotate it so it goes in farther, and then keep doing that until I can unlock the door."

"I don't think locks work like that."

"Sure it will. The grooves are still in the right place. It's just twisted."

"I think you can probably flatten it out in a vice over in the BARn."

"That will break it. Look. It's not just bent. It's twisted. It's not in one plane like a vice could fix."

"You need to talk to your dad. Or you could just get another key made."

"Nobody will make these dorm keys. If I lose it or break it, I have to pay $150 for a new one."

"WHAT? One hundred fifty dollars for a KEY? That's highway robbery!"

"Well, they tell us that when they give us the key. Because if something happens to the key, they have to drill out the lock and replace it completely, and give out four new keys to the suitemates. To keep us safe."

"I'm sure your dad can get that key straightened. Especially when he hears about the $150."

That was the last I heard about it. Some things are in my domain, like the money, and other things are in Hick's domain. Like bending a twisted key back like new.

Over Easter weekend, Hick asked Genius how his key worked. I stuck around for the answer. "I'm guessing it did, because I did not get a charge of $150 on your student account statement."

"Actually, it worked, but I didn't want to take a chance on it every time, so I told the front desk that I locked myself out, and they gave me the spare key, and when I took it back, I gave them the twisted one. They didn't look at it. I told my suitemates that if they locked themselves out, to text one of us, or they'd need to be careful with that front desk key, to wiggle it until it went in. And it didn't cost me a thing!"

BRAVO! That's why we call him Genius.


  1. Sneak-er. Scheme-er. Connive-er is more like it. His genius falls in the "clever-bordering-on-sneaky" range, apparently.

    I wonder where he got THAT part of his genetic make-up from?

  2. He is aptly names. I'm sure his genius comes from YOUR side of the family.

  3. I am the Keymaster! The Destructor is coming. Gozer the Traveler, the Destroyer. Are you the Gatekeeper?

  4. joeh,
    I suppose it was a victimless crime. And it saved me $150! That's 187.5 44 oz. Diet Cokes from the 80-cent refill store!

    Obviously, Genius inherited that trait from Hick. I'll give him a pass on the Sneaker/Schemer/Conniver part. When he becomes a Midnight Toker, we're going to have issues. I'm not forking over the cash if he loses his scholarships because he can't hold onto a 3.25 GPA.

    You must be a psychic. I will allow that his electrical/gadget smarts come directly from Hick, though.

    He thinks outside the box that is his room behind a locked door with a bent key.

    I am not the gatekeeper. It was not that long ago that I locked myself out of my own home, and had to holler through the barbed-wire fence for help to my neighbor and his son-in-law who were in the midst of revving a truck engine.