Key Free Living

English: Sundry key fobs.

With all of today’s technology, why is it that we have some many keys?  I think I speak  for others on this issue – I can’t believe I am the only person with 15 keys on my main key chain.  Yes, main key chain – that is to say that I have more than one key chain as I suspect is true for you too. I have one for the house, and two for work – totaling something like 25 keys.  Some I have no idea where they came from or what they open.  And they are of all shapes, and sizes.  Some with teeth, some without. Gold, silver, thick and thin – one goes to a suitcase, I think, the other to a cheap filing cabinet on wheels, both thin and pliant like a paper clip for locks that could just as easily be opened by a paper clip or a toothpick.

How long have keys been around anyway? A long time, to be sure.   The first ones were thought to have been used by ancient Egyptians some 4,000 years ago.  The principle of a lock and key hasn’t changed that much since and yet technology is so advanced these days that we could really go keyless, just as we’ve gone wireless and paperless for the most part.  I know some cars have keyless entry and do not require ignition keys; just hit the start button and off you go.  I don’t happen to own one of those cars, maybe you do.  Actually, I want my car to read my mind or operate totally on voice commands – my voice and the voices of whoever I might authorize to drive it.  Furthermore, I’d like for it to just drive itself.  I’d get in, tell it where to go and then have my morning coffee and maybe blog or read a book or newspaper until the thing announced it’d reached my destination.

The thing with keys is that they are heavy and bulky on a chain and they clank around and get stuck in my pocket or fall to the bottom of my briefcase where I have to fish them out – I don’t really have a briefcase.  What I have is a student style canvas bookbag which doubles as my lunch bag.  Actually I put my lunch bag inside my bookbag, which I used to call a backpack, but it’s really not – I never carry it on my back or go camping with it – it’s more like a shoulder bag.  Anyway, I’d rather not have to dig for my keys to open my house door.  I’d like for it to open like the automatic doors in supermarkets or like the doors on the Star Trek Enterprise along with those swishing sound effects.

What about this? There should be a key free holiday – something like leave you keys at home day.  Maybe that’s not such a good idea because you’d have to leave your door unlocked and take the bus to work or call a locksmith.  If we went totally keyless, say by executive order or something, this would put locksmiths out of business but maybe they could “retool” and become metallurgical engineers or alchemists with a little job training.  Congress, are you listening?  Call it the key free living jobs bill for the 21st century.  The Government needs a Department of Alchemy to convert all our melted keys to gold.  This would help balance the budget and keep us from going off the fiscal curb.