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Keys: The Lost Episodes

Sometimes I feel like I’ve blown my literary wad, given this blog my all. I’ve got nothing left.

And then I lock myself out of my condo.

I never walk out of the house without having the solid feel of the keys in my hand. And last Thursday, I stared at the outside of my front door, feeling my keys very solidly in my hand. The wrong keys. My Sacramento keys. The keys that went to my Sacramento front door. And my Sacramento car. The keys that were useless to me as I stood outside my Los Angeles front door.

And I had to meet a guy in thirty minutes. A guy whose phone number was inside my house. A writer guy I met a couple of weeks ago and arranged to interview for my blog. I had to get to this meeting.

Panic-ridden adrenaline rushed through me, overwhelming me. I haven’t had that feeling since I screwed up some production data at my ersatz Tech job. But there was a little silver-lined voice in the cloud of my head saying, Hey, when this is all over, you’re so totally blogging about it.

At that moment, however, I was a bit immobilized, and kind of freaking out, because I always worry that when I agree to meet someone somewhere, and then I die before I get there, who is going to tell that person I’m just not going to make it that day? After wrapping my car around a squirrel, will some wayward stranger be conscientious enough to search my dead body for my schedule and follow-up on my appointments? No. If anything, they would steal my cellphone. And my laptop. And my limited edition Spongebob Squarepants car seat covers. Jerks.

So now this guy was going to think I’m a total flake and refuse to take my calls.

Crap!

And you were going to be so impressed, wondering how did I nab this guy for an interview, and I just blew it.

I looked at my keys and realized with some relief that they included the car I drove down to L.A. in. I could still get to the interview, and worry about the rest afterward. But then I realized I couldn’t get into the garage under our condo building without my OTHER L.A. keys.

Crap!

You’re probably saying, well, don’t you have spare keys somewhere? Yes. Yes, I do. My husband in Sacramento has an extra set. My roommate, who moved out last month and left them in the kitchen drawer for me, had an extra set. My next-door neighbor had an extra set until four days before this fiasco when I asked her to return them because I’m in the middle of preparing to rent out the place, so why would I need extra keys at this point, right?

I knocked on my five neighbors’ doors to see if anyone was home at 1:30 pm on a Thursday, thinking they could let me into the garage. No such luck. I called a neighbor down the street and fortunately she was home and drove me to Starbucks up the hill on Beverly Glen Drive near Mulholland Drive.

“You wanna check and make sure he’s here?” she asked as I got out of her car.

“He might not be here yet, so go ahead. I’ll be OK.”

Whew! At least I made it to the meeting on time. Only now I was a nervous wreck and could only think of my problem – how was I supposed to have a decent conversation with this person?

While I waited, I made a million phone calls including:

1.  Any and all of my five condo neighbors (because I also needed to get back into the locked entry gate to reach my front door).

2.  My husband who was 400 miles away and having some personal crisis of his own which meant that neither one of us was any help to the other.

3.  Tracking down a locksmith (and let me just thank God right now for the iPhone and Google Maps, because Starbucks does not have Free Wifi if you happen to be traveling around with your laptop).

The rest of the story is boring, except for the part where my interviewee doesn’t show up, so now I’m wondering if I have the wrong day, or if I was supposed to call to confirm, or a hundred other reasons of how I screwed up. Essentially, I was in no condition to conduct any kind of interview. It would probably have gone something like this:

Me: So, do you know any good locksmiths?

Him: Uhhhh…..

Me: Can you give me a ride home? I mean, I know it’s out of your way, but I’m sort of stuck here.

Him: Can we talk about my book?

Me: How could I be so stupid – GAH! Stupid, Stupid, Stupid!

Him: I’m not sure you should be drinking that triple shot thingy –

Me: I’m a good person, you know? I’m a responsible person! Oh, there’s another guy leaving now – (calls out to other guy) EXCUSE ME SIR? CAN YOU TAKE ME HOME?

My obsession with getting back through my front door was just too all-consuming, and this large double cappuchino I was guzzling wasn’t helping matters any. I began to hope that this guy wouldn’t show up. I rocked back and forth, mumbling “Serenity now!” to no effect. And what is the proper gutteral response to people who can’t stop staring at you with dropped jaws anyway?

After half an hour of waiting and asking two people who slightly resembled him if they were indeed him, you know, just for good measure, and in my state of mind could very well have been him, I only met him once before after all, I called my neighbor to bring me back home. The locksmith showed up right after I arrived, and one of my condo neighbors happened to get home from work early to let me in the entry gate. Ninety-five seconds and ninty-five bucks later, I was back in my house again.

I haven’t locked myself out of the house since college, when one morning around dawn, I lethargically crawled out of bed, thinking I heard my cat, Rufus, screaming to come inside. I walked out the front door of my apartment, which locked behind me and did I mention that I only slept in a T-Shirt? As in ONLY a T-Shirt? As in, Nanny Goats in no panties whatsoever? And of course that day, my roommate wasn’t home.

Why can’t I ever lock myself out of the house so that all I have to do is knock on the door for someone to let me in?

Call me a wimp, but I don’t think I should live in two cities anymore.

small ban div

Hey man, could you all do me a solid and click on this button to boost me up in the Sacramento Top 25 rankings? Just one click. Nothing else. Thanks, man.
Goat Thing of The Day

Pamela from My Thoughts Exactly pointed out this ad shown on Womples.com.

Free Wink: Hostage Crisis Update

Wink’s return is allegedly imminent. It has been more than six weeks. Terms were discussed. Papers were signed. My friend is just waiting for the green light that is the phone call announcing Wink’s return. There is more to the story, but right now, that is all I can say.

(Wink’s Hostage Story)

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57 Comments

  1. Cheri Pryor says:

    I’m guessing from your recent post last week you finally got your interview? It was great, btw!
    I’ve never (knock on anything resembling wood) locked myself out of the house. But the car? Yeah…

  2. Margo says:

    Call me a wimp, but I don’t think I should live in two rooms anymore. The locksmiths know me well in town. It always freaks me out how fast they work.

  3. Why is so much funnier when it’s not you? Been there, done that. *sigh*

  4. Joanna J says:

    Had I known that was you pacing at “my” Starbucks at the top of the hill– I’d have given you a ride home!!! And I’m available if you want to drop off a spare set of keys. I think I live right around the corner from your condo! Who knew!?!?!

  5. Preston says:

    I remember back in 1978 I was taking my future ex-wife out to dinner at a fancy restaurant called Victor Hugos. We were both 18 and never experienced valet parking. When the guy said get out of the car and we’ll park it, we both got out and locked the doors-with the car still running-right in front of the restaurant entrance. Yup. Glad to see Winky is going to be returned. And please check out my newly redesigned blog at my own domain, http://www.meandtheblueskies.com. Yup, I said goodbye to blogspot!

  6. Just wanted to let ya’ know that I voted for you too:) All the best!

  7. margie says:

    crap. what can you say but crap.

  8. Tricia says:

    Blahh. I would have had to pee. Seriously, I’ve locked myself out of places several times and I always have to pee within ten seconds. Why’s that?
    And you were going to interview who??

  9. Jan says:

    Helloooooo! Margaret? Are you there, Margaret?
    I’ve got something for you on my site!

  10. Breathe says:

    Shoot you should have called me. I know four guys who could have gotten into your house.
    Course your TV would be gone, but that’s covered by insurance, right?

  11. Julie says:

    Don’t you just hate it when that happens? I have a thing for locking my keys in my car. Although, I did have to have a friend break into my house for me once but that’s another story. Visiting from SITS tonight… love your blog so far! 🙂

  12. Braja says:

    Nup, looks like 2 cities sucks 🙂
    So good to catch up with you Miss Panties :))
    xxx

  13. Rhonda says:

    Too funny! I love your blog!
    Thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving a comment!

  14. Can I get a medal? I’ve never locked myself out of my house! Out of my car, yes. But not my house.
    I’ve had the same key chain now for 25 years – it’s a huge brass ring. I can push it all the way up above my elbow and just let my keys dangle, which is what I do so I always know where they are.
    I’m not even going to bother telling you how many times I’ve forgotten that they’re dangling there, at which point I freak out, wondering where the hell my keys are.
    That speaks volumes as to how forgetful I’m becoming, but that’s OK because I can’t hear those volumes as apparently, I’m going deaf as well. Those keys make a freaking racket on my arm.

  15. Blond Duck says:

    Holy crap! You poor thing. Why do you live in two cities?

  16. Jen says:

    I often think I need a little piece of paper in my pants or jacket that explains where I am going, who I am meeting and when my kids need to be picked up and from where, just in case I get hit by a meteor or win the lottery and fly off to Bermuda, or lock my keys in the car and then throw myself into traffic because I left my phone in the car. I never actually get around to writing this note but I think about it enough to know that you are as sick as I am and we are both in need of some anti-anxiety pills. I suspect the guy you were interviewing locked himself out of the house and was unable to get to the interview because he was in possession of his other house keys. I carry all my keys on one ring along with a bunch of things with my name on it to remind me that they are indeed my keys. My key chain weighs at least 17lbs. I don’t forget it all that often since I really notice when I don’t have it.

  17. Sarah says:

    Hope Wink is released soon!
    Sorry about the key fiasco. My husband has tried to show me how to “pick” our locks…but thankfully, the few times I’ve locked myself out, he’s been home, or my MIL (who has a spare) has been available.

  18. kel says:

    I have given keys to my best friends and my mom and my neighbor because I lock myself out at least twice a year… at least.

  19. wendz says:

    Oh wow – what a bummer! Amazing how panicky we get when something like that happens and in all honesty it really is an easy situation to get out of.
    Not so long ago my key got stuck in the security gate outside our front door so I was locked outside. I drove up to the local locksmith who came back with me – 4 mins away – it took him 2 mins to unjam the thing and then he charged me a friggin fortune! But what choice did I have??

  20. Blicky Kitty says:

    Don’t tell me you scored that big Gene Rayburn interview we’ve all been vying for!
    Gene Simmons? Gary Coleman?

  21. This is so something that would happen to me. I really wish he had shown up so you could have the locksmith conversation. Now THAT would be a book in itself.

  22. nicole says:

    since about two month my toddler is able to open the front door and to close and LOCK it, so it’s only a question of time until he locks me out. why does my neighbor NOT have a key from me yet since DH is thousands of miles away and not going to be home before xmas?

  23. Hey, don’t come to my site because I don’t have an award for ya, but I do feel your pain on living in two cities. It’s hell remembering what you have where and then needing something that you realize you left in the other place.
    btw, did the guy ever call and tell you why he didn’t show?

  24. Tiggy says:

    After all that you went through… your interviewee didn’t show up? Oh noes!!

  25. Muse Swings says:

    Just as I suspected…! I was here yesterday and about to leave a comment, when I saw something shiny – your house keys,perhaps, and then those pantyless goats started staring at me, so I must have just wandered on back to my place for an afternoon aperitif. Beer is an aperitif, isn’t it? If you serve it over ice and with a straw?

  26. mannequin says:

    Oh crap. I just break somethin’ to get in.

  27. mrsmouthy says:

    Dude, you’re such a dork. You totally could have gone down the chimney and saved yourself a lot of stress!

  28. Alex L. says:

    Make some key ring, ear rings… of course you’d look like a dork… do you have a problem with that.

  29. Nikkicrumpet says:

    Great story! I can’t believe after all that he didn’t even show up! I locked myself out of our brand new house the first week we lived here. It was January and about 10 degrees with a couple of feet of snow on the ground. I had on a nightgown and nothing else…no shoes which was the worst part…it was the damn cat’s fault. I tried a couple neighbors doors and nobody was home. I was standing in the middle of the road crying when a lady came by in an SUV. she rolled down the window a couple inches because she was afraid I was some crazy serial killer. She let me borrow her cell phone and I called my hubby….45 minutes later of sitting on the porch curled in the fetal position and trying to stave off frost bite….I was rescued. I’m glad you at least had good weather lol

  30. Jes the Bes says:

    This is hilarious. I love your blog.
    Thanks for stopping by mine the other day.

  31. ByJane says:

    oh woe….what a jerk he was. or was he? I’d offer an ad hominem critique of his book, but you already know what I thought.

  32. Pricilla says:

    I am sorry about your crisis. I don’t carry keys being a goat and all but I am curious about this job. What does it pay? What do I have to do? Maybe I can become and independent goat….
    Hmmmm.

  33. Scott says:

    You plagiarised my life! This was brilliant.
    Both of my brothers are prone to sleepwalking, and both have locked themselves out of their apartments/houses utterly naked. I’m hoping that particular gene has bypassed me. I feel your pain…

  34. Alisha says:

    Last time I did that I was by myself with 2 infants. Yup. Fun times!

  35. Madge says:

    my son loves when we lock the keys in the house so he can crawl through the dog door. see? you just need a kid. my kid. i’ll send him right over. you can keep him. maybe.

  36. Mai Laws says:

    That was all sorts of awesome!!! I thought I was the only like this! All too often, the only thing that keeps me from losing my mind in situations such as these is hearing that little voice in the back of my mind whispering, “When this is all over, it’ll be one hell of a blog.” Hahaha…
    I’ve only locked myself out once before, but I wasn’t a blogger yet. Just some local celebrity stuck outside her apartment, sitting atop the front hood of her rental car in her skimpy summer pajamas, shoeless. I’ll have to blog all about it now…
    The next time I feel like I’ve blown my literary wad, given my blog my all and having nothing left, I’ll be sure to come here immediately! I’ve got myself a muse!
    Now– to master this whole trackback thingy…

  37. kari says:

    Heehee! That post cracked me up! Thanks for leaving a comment with me. I feel your pain on the locking yourself out issue. I do this more than I am willing to admit to my husband!

  38. honey change one lock to the other one. i mean both doors should have the same key, like a master key. that’s what i do.
    smiles, bee
    xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxo

  39. MommyTime says:

    Ugh. Getting locked out is the worst. Breaking into your own house is so not fun. But, what gives with the interviewee not showing up? Is is possible you were supposed to interview him in LA?

  40. Oh, I have such a THING about the possibility of locking myself out of my house and/or car. I even have a wristband on my keys so I can feel them dangling from my arm and *know* I haven’t walked out the door without them. (I also have a carabiner clip on my purse that I attach them to at times instead of dangling them like so much gigantic bling from my forearm.) I also am sure to have my cell phone with me at all times, just in case I manage to somehow still misplace my keys, thereby locking myself out of somewhere.
    Like, take for example, 25 minutes ago, when I exited my home to walk my daughter up to the corner to catch the bus to kindergarten. I was wearing my jammies with a Mickey Mouse baseball cap jammed down upon my bedhead, with keyring-bracelet dangling from the wrist above the hand in which I clutched my cell phone.
    Also? I left the front door not only unlocked but open, in case, you know, the cat managed to push it closed, grow some opposable thumbs and then lock the deadbolt in the 4 minutes I was outdoors.
    Also also? I actually thought to myself as we headed up the sidewalk “well, if *that* happens, the window over the kitchen sink is open.” You know, so that if (a) I dropped my keys and they were sucked into a magical black hole that suddenly opened up in the sidewalk before me and closed before I could dive in after them, (b) the cat managed to implement her Evil Feline Plan and shut and lock the front door and (c) my cell phone suddenly spontaneously combusted and/or died, I’d *still* be able to get back inside, albeit by clambering through the smallest window in my home via the deck in my backyard.
    Yes, I have such a thing about locking myself out that I actively plan alternate entries into my home.
    I am not telling you this to demonstrate exactly how crazy I am, mind you. (Figure you already know that, anyhow, so moot point, right?) I am telling you this so that you can join me in my state of constant uber-preparedness so that such a situation never happens to you again.
    You’re welcome. 😉

  41. Sheila says:

    When we bought our first house, eons ago…we locked ourselves out and my husband scaled the two story home and broke in through a window.
    The following week we met our new neighbors and told them the story. The guy says…”Oh, that was YOU? I thought someone was breaking in.”
    OMG….thought someone was breaking in and no call to the cops. LOSERS. God, sorry about writing a book here. That’s a tough situation with the distance between you and pappygoat. (lol)

  42. KiKi says:

    Holy cow, sounds like something I’d do! What a pain in the arse…so glad you got through it, nanny panties in tact! xo

  43. jan says:

    hey.. come on by my site.. I have an award for you!!!
    Jan

  44. j says:

    you are to funny!

  45. AnnsRants says:

    I HATE being locked out. So disconcerting–in an ET-Phone-home sort of way.
    I cracked up at some point during this post, oh yeah “serenity now!”
    you’re great.
    Ann

  46. Erin says:

    I think I can guess which neighbor that was, and yes, she WOULD. Nice.
    Whatever happened to the interviewee?

  47. lisa says:

    I’m glad eveything ended well (well, except for the guy not showing up.)
    Women are very resourceful in panic situations. Guys would have gone to the bar and waited for the girl to come home to let them back in.

  48. Suzy says:

    My neighbor has my keys and she’s always home. Recently she had to give them back to me because I did the same as you. Then she left town. Only now I don’t have a backup for the backup.

  49. FreaKeroppi says:

    … You’re gonna have to give me moar details later. Haha. 😀

  50. I sometimes feel like the blog saps my literary wad as well, and I’ve got a whole buncha novels to finish and write and get published.
    But it was a funny blog-worthy post, so you’ve still got it, Nanny!

  51. floridian says:

    The dialogue: I laughed.

  52. Em says:

    My palms got sweaty for you. Thank the Lord for the outside keypad to my garage door and On Star – I so get this.

  53. Yaya says:

    Wink 🙁
    Wow you have a really nice nieghbor! And from now on carry a spare key set in your purse and hide another set!

  54. Rhea says:

    good lord have mercy. Living in two cities sounds complicated.
    I wrote a post recently about my 12 yr old getting locked out of the house…and how he got his BB gun out of the backyard and decided to shoot the door lock off, like they do in movies.
    Yeah, didn’t work.

  55. Sparky says:

    That was hilarious (now). I’m sure you weren’t feeling hilarious at the time. :o) And this is why I always have a spare key hidden in my wallet and one hidden outside my house. I have an unnatural fear of being locked out!

  56. Gladys says:

    Go to my site I have given you an award.
    I can’t wait until your Wink UPdate is that the hostage is free!