Monday, June 1, 2009

Is Keylessness an aspect of Bliss?

For several days this past month I didn’t have any keys in my pockets. The place we were staying at didn’t give us keys – we just knocked on the door and they let us in. With no car keys, no office keys to carry around, it was the first time in a very long time that I didn’t have any physical key with me. But now I am back to carrying a couple of them.

This got me wondering if being without any physical keys was somehow indicative of having achieved some level of personal freedom. Could it be that those who carry around very few keys have also simplified other aspects in their life?

If any of you reading this are able to get by on a daily basis with just 2 keys or fewer, then I’d like to hear from you. Please consider sharing how you manage that by leaving a comment.


Goutham said...

Well Ram, count me as one of those with 2 keys or fewer. I use the garage door opener (which is in the car) to get into the house and I carry only a car key. I don't have any other keys.

Anyways, fewer keys is not a measure of personal freedom. How many keys do you think Barack Obama is carrying? He is the probably the one farthest from personal freedom.

Chris said...

I just to moved to the city, and my apartment came with seven(!) keys. I even had to apply some Human Factors and color code/label to keep them all straight. So using the key count as a benchmark, I am an indentured servant to urban living. I wonder how many of those villagers you mentioned in your other recent blog post have keys, and if they wish they had a use for some.

Arvind said...

Dunno about keys because you have keyless entry and so on.

But a man who feels no desire to lock anything is indeed a free man.

Have you lived even 30 seconds without the desire to hold on to something? I havent.


Ram said...


I had a lot of misgivings about this post because I knew the measure was flawed. But I decided to go ahead because I still think there a kernel of truth to this somewhere, though I didn't capture it.

In Chris' case, just one apartment came with 7 keys. In your case, one of your keys (the garage opener) sits inside the car to whic you have a key.

Perhaps having no key at all (and not having others carry your keys for you either) is freedom.

Like Arvind mentions, I think I am referring to keys as symbols of something we want to safeguard and hold on to. Perhaps that would be freedom of a sort.

Kannan said...

hey, i have only one key. the main key to my house. if you count the fob that is the keyless entry into my house, it makes two keys.

Now, if you are talking about keys metaphorically, one carries many more keys, right, may it be as simple as logins for web sites one uses or however often you have to prove that you are who you are and have permission to do something.

So, I think it is not a matter of whether you dont have the desire to lock anything, but whether the system you live in is so 'anonymized' that you have to constantly prove you are who you are.



~ Marie ~ said...

My background...
- growing up in Maine and not locking our house unless going out of town
- married for about 30 years to someone who is lock happy

Keys - what keys? I have been in an RV for two years now mostly nesting in one place. Recently I noticed that I almost never carry keys anymore. With a lock happy husband I get to enjoy my light pockets. (...feminist becomes lazy bones...)

Interesting timing on your key thoughts... I have been stewing on it lately too... should I be carrying them for flexibility and back up? hmmmm.... not yet. ;)