Open Almost Any Door

Bump Key Open Almost any Lock
Barefoot technology for opening  almost any doors.

After I moved from the warm, sunlit shores of Santa Cruz  to the cold, snowy mountains of Sandy, I discovered with horrifying clarity the power I  surrendered.

I was wearing a t-shirt, shorts, and in my barefeet when I  left my apartment, realizing just as the gateway to my only source of shelter slammed shut with a loud bang that I left my keys inside with the kitchen stove boiling rice while the bleak winter clouds blasted down snow on a Sunday when all the honest locksmiths were closed. My wife who was tired from a long day’s work had to hike six long miles to get home, she screamed at me when she arrived watching me hopping from toe to toe on the glaciers of our parking lot–she was mad, mad about the burning rice, mad about freezing her butt off outside in the cold dark night, and most of all mad at me for desperately eyeing the hefty stones on the ground near the kitchen window, my intentions to escape the polar tundra as clear as glass.

Eventually we got ahold of a”locksmith” who drove all the way from Gresham, losing his way many times on the long, winding country roads, barely arriving in time to spare my dark blue toes from frostbite.  I had my doubts about the locksmith perhaps because his company car was a rusty old pinto, perhaps because his oversized jeans were dirty and torn, perhaps becuase he hadn’t bathed in weeks, perhaps because he kept rocking back and forth and grinding his brown gooey teeth.

Legitimate locksmith or not, he knew how get into a locked apartment, his tools being what looked like a thick a hairpin and tension wrench fashioned from an old windshield wiper. After a fair amount of fiddling and cursing, we burst inside the apartment. I rushed over to the pot of rice which was smoking fiercely just about to catch flames, turning off the hot stove just in time to trigger the fire alarm’s piercing squeal.

That was the night I decided to learn how to pick locks only to discover that picking locks is a reckless waste of time when all you really need to get inside almost any house is a bump key. Bump keys are frightening easy to  buy or make and they’re foolproof  for most neighborhood locks.

Sometimes when WhatsHisFace who starred in YouKnowThatMovieIAmTalkingAbout escapes me, I wish I could make a bump key for my brain. I’d unlock all the good memories from my childhood, all of the college lectures I attended, all of the fantastic ideas I’ve read in books, but mostly I’d use the bump key to open the part of my brain for remembering to not to lock my barefeet  outside in the cold winter snow.

5 or Six Ways to Beat the Blues

Image via Wikipedia

The Winter doldrums can try to dim the brightest hearts. But Winter doesn’t have to be a somber time of sadness.

Here are five or six things I do when I’m feeling a little down. Of course, I do them without shoes on. So, the first step to feeling good is to take off your shoes! It’s the only way to feel the world.

  1. I Gobble Grateful-Fruits:
    I force myself to think of good things in my life–those are the grateful fruits. Sometimes, I think about this blog. Lately, I’ve been getting more visitors and more visitors. Knowing that other people value my thoughts, dumb jokes, and rants makes me smile. Other times, I think about how wonderful it is be healthy enough to run and hike barefoot in the Northwest.
    I hunt for anything in my life that I can be grateful for. When I do this, my mind automatically focuses on other things that make me feel good. It takes a little effort, but it works. And it sets my thoughts on the path to happiness.
  2. Project my Personal Powerhouse
    Over the years, I’ve realized that some people are miserable. For whatever reason, they have chosen dark over light. Unfortunately, when chronically miserable people enter a room, all the plants and my heart seems to wither. It can be draining to be around such people. Whenever possible, I remove myself from their presence, but if that is not feasible, I simply don’t take anything they say to heart. They are miserable. They want everyone else to be miserable. I don’t partake in misery. I hate feeling miserable.
    In general, I make it habit not to take ANYTHING personally. I fob off criticism onto bad behaviors. Behaviors change. Yes, some of my behaviors suck, but I AM MORE THAN MY BEHAVIORS. Whenever someone says, “You always….” or “You are….I ignore what follows. They are simply describing my bad behaviors. Sometimes, the person is right about the negative behavior, but I don’t bind my identity to it. True, I can be mean, cruel, and even a little evil at times, but I’m NOT and will never be a MEAN,CRUEL, or EVIL PERSON. Those behaviors aren’t my true nature. So, I NEVER attribute negative comments or behaviors to my nature. I know that I am fearfully and wonderfully made and absolutely perfect in my own way.
  3. Overpowering Optimism
    This one takes practice and effort, but it’s worth it. Basically, I eliminate negative pervasive explanations. Negatively pervasive explanations steal my power. As soon I start attributing behaviors to deep personal flaws, I lose all control. It becomes an excuse to stagnate. For example, if I miss a deadline, I don’t beat myself up about it. I admit my shortcoming, but focus on all of the other times when I did make the deadline. I also focus on the end result, the client wants quality work; so, rather put inferior work on time, I had to delay to put out something worthwhile. Don’t get me wrong, missed deadlines are NOT something I’m proud of, but I don’t allow them to chip away at my self-esteem. I don’t let flukes or even patterns of behavior for that matter parade as my chemical make-up. When I’m the world’s most optimistic person, I put a positive spin on EVERYTHING; then, it becomes impossible to frown.
  4. Shower & Shave
    This is very important, I used to neglect my personal appearance when I was depressed; now, it’s the first I tend to when I’m feeling down. There’s something invigorating about taking the time to look good. The cleansing ritual also serves as a distraction, it’s difficult to think negative thoughts when you’re proactively making yourself look better.
  5. Positive Pictures
    This is another one that takes effort, but it works. I visualize myself smiling and happy. I also force a smile–sometimes its painful, but it gets easier the longer it’s there. I also see myself on the beach or surrounded by wealth and beauty. If I’m really feeling down, I’ll go ahead and Google images for “wealth” “happiness” “joy”, etc. I also make sure that  I have the “strict” image search filter on; otherwise, I usually end up viewing porn. OK, that last two words of the previous is Secret Number Six 😉
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