I am tempted, occasionally, to leave the front door of Manland unlocked for quick trips to the gas station or the drug store. This has greatly annoyed previous girlfriends of mine.
The way I figure it, there’s an outer door that protects me slightly from random passers-by, so the only people who would be trying the knob would be my neighbors, and I seriously doubt that Upstairs Cutie has any interest whatsoever in purloining my bicycles.
I do, however, believe that locks keep honest people honest. If the pot smoke across the hall from me were to clear for a few moments, those neighbors might find themselves rummaging through my kitchen for snacks before they even knew what happened, which is presumably how most events in their lives transpire.
But really, the main problem with the idea of leaving my door unlocked, outside of the scorn of some of my associates, is my own behavior. In the process of running whatever quick errand I have to run, I invariably forget that I’ve left my door open to save time, and only remember when I put the key in the lock to unlock it.
Upon turning the key, it moves more easily than it should, and I feel a brief tickle at my neck as the Vulture of Shame glides over me.
But what is a man to do? I’m tired from a bike ride. I’m sweaty. My head and hairstyle give the impression that someone has stapled a face to a chicken’s ass, but I know I want to have a cold beer in my hand under the hot shower and there are none in the fridge.
I can’t put on regular clothes in my condition, as they’d have to be washed, or burned. So I pull on my sweatpants, throw on my “Want cheap gas? Pull my finger!” tee shirt, and head out for a quick mission to snag a pot pie and some cold beers, hoping like hell that I don’t see anyone I know or want to know more nakedly.
Upstairs Cutie seems to have a sense for when I am outside Manland looking as stupid as possible and chooses these moments to emerge or come home. Where is she when I am having new golden trimming fitted to the handcrafted saddle for my warhorse Mr. Gallops? Brushing her hair, I guess, or drawing flowers or whatever girls do, but certainly not paying attention.
In last night’s case, the operation went off without a hitch. I didn’t see anyone hot enough to embarrass me, I got my items, and I charged home safely unseen. Then I put on some tunes, cracked a coldie, and got in a hot shower, all the while smiling the smile of a gentleman well pleased.
The weather is getting warmer, I’m injury free, and my calendar is full of almost nothing besides my work and riding bikes.
Happiness, my friends!