The art of lock picking is no longer a skill used exclusively by the dregs of society. In fact, most criminals have given up on lock picking altogether. In the absence of criminality, an amazing hobby has taken hold. I know a lot of people think that it is illegal to own lock picks. And just as an FYI, if you don’t have to consult a lawyer before getting into a hobby, then that hobby is most likely lame.
Cool hobbies are the things that people consider as going against the grain of society, but still not illegal. You want your hobby to be like a nice leather jacket. Rugged but still approachable. Practical, but without losing the cool factor. Forget about model trains. Forget about wine tasting. And try your hardest to forget about competitive dog dancing. There will be no need for any other hobbies once you get bit by the lock picking bug. But this bug is a werewolf! And it is going to turn you into a security bypassing beast. If you still aren’t convinced, let’s explore the topic a little further.
The Big Rules
It is important to get you familiar with the most basic ethics behind lock picking before I start giving you the sales pitch. Because lock picking gives you powers beyond the realm of mortal men, you must abide by not only the laws of your land but also the code of the lock pickers. These rules must be followed even when the law is absent or takes no stance on the issue. The guidelines are simple and easy to remember:
- Do not pick locks that you do not own, or have not been given permission by the owner to pick.
- Do not pick locks that are in use.
With that basic two rule framework, you can avoid the morally gray areas of picking. The second rule can have exceptions based on your chosen profession, but the first is a hard and fast rule. Even if you want to become a locksmith or other form of
1. It’s Marketable
There are a lot of hobbies that people take up, which don’t really transfer to a job. If you really like to pick locks, then there are actually jobs where you can do it, and get paid. It is true that there is quite a bit more to locksmithing then picking locks, but you don’t have to become a locksmith to use lock picking. There are other jobs in the security field that require quite a bit of lock knowledge and manipulation facility. Businesses and companies will hire private contractors to test out penetration attacks on their security.
Usually, people think about white hat hacking, which people in movies do from a remote location, without ever stepping into the building they are hacking. In the real world, the physical protection that a company has will secure certain servers that cannot be remotely accessed. Such physical protections require physical security penetration. These jobs really do exist and involve you being paid by companies to break in and steal their stuff. The path, to what sounds like easily the most exciting job on the planet, begins with learning the basics of lock picking and constantly
2. It’s Practical
Not only is it practical because it can land you a job, but it
Essentially, nonviolent entry into a home where an elderly person is living keeps them
3. It’s Impressive
Lock picking is essentially magic to the general public. People do not understand it, and a part of them does not want to understand it. (Ignorance being bliss, and all that.) That means that when you have a
At first, I thought that no one would be interested in the nerdy lock knowledge that you pick up from being in this community, but people love learning weird things. Though I have never met someone that is not interested in learning a bit about locks, I still make sure that they are not bored to death by the subject. It is a subject that everyone has some preconceived notion about because they deal with locks every day. So everyone always has questions. I will often use this as a way to move the conversation on to movies. For example, how the most recent Mission: Impossible (Rogue Nation) shows you a bit of how locks work. Their cell phone lock pick makes no sense, but it still shows how a basic pin tumbler locks on the inside. Then they ask, “Well why wouldn’t it work?” That answer is a whole different blog post, but essentially this breaks the ice and moves the conversation along. All the while, people are impressed.
4. It’s Fun
This may sound subjective, but in my experience, it is a pretty universal truth. Granted, unless the person is very lucky, or naturally adept, the hobby will begin as frustrating. But the fun will come! As soon as you open up a lock you will get an amazingly rewarding sensation of euphoric accomplishment. I can only guess at the reasons for the seemingly across the board reaction to opening a lock, but whatever the reason, the sensation is addicting. Once a person gets a lock open, they rarely give it back. They will lock it back up and try again. This is the obvious reaction. Most people are in disbelief and riding high on wonder. They have done the impossible. After all that talk of how lock picking is not as easy as it looks in the movies, they have completed the same task as James Bond. I remember the first time I picked a lock.
A friend was passing around his picks and a deadbolt. Everyone was giving it a try, and then I got it open. I reluctantly passed it on to the next person, but I wanted to keep going. It may seem, from my example, that addicting is a little more apt than fun, but don’t let my personal lack of impulse control turn you off. There is no sickness that lock picking gives you. It is more like being bitten by a love bug. It is hard to shake. Even as I talk about it I am smiling. If you find it half as fun as I do, you are going to have a great time.
5. It’s Perfect for You
I mean you specifically. Doesn’t it sound perfect? I mean you somehow ended up here on the site, then you started reading the post. Then you got down to the last reason and started to read it. And for those who this doesn’t apply to, they will never see it. So you might say, “Well what if I have only read this part of the article, and haven’t read the rest?” First off: I appreciate the imagination and thought
You should really pick locks. The hobby really compliments the way you live your life. It is going to open up so many different avenues for experience and financial opportunity. You were made to do this! Born into the fate that you would be a great lock picker. And there is no need to act against your destiny. The only thing waiting for you at the end of this path is happiness and treasure beyond your wildest dreams. And your dreams are huge, so that is a lot of treasure and happiness. It is going to be great, just you wait and see.
Between the marketability and the practicality, you would think that I didn’t need to keep going, but there are just so many reasons to take up lock picking. Sure you are going to open yourself up to having some of the coolest jobs on the planet Earth (perhaps even the universe), but more importantly, people are going to think you are a wizard. With the power to open any locks you can get your picks on, and the moral fortitude to keep yourself from using your powers for evil, you will become a real life superhero.
Am I perhaps blowing things out of proportion? Maybe. You, however, will definitely be blowing people’s minds with your veritable “Alohomora” charm. Blowin’ minds and havin’ a grand old time. Truly you will be enjoying yourself at the same time as you are becoming a more rounded and contributing member of your community. The hobby of lock picking just seems to make people better, and you were so great