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As a rule, we don’t tend to get many time-wasters, but now and again people show up who are either deliberately prank-calling us, or have simply come to the wrong place by mistake.

I’m a forgiving sort of chap, and hold no grudges against pranksters (with the notable exception of our TDoS callers) because, after all, they can be entertaining.

“Can you unlock my chastity belt?”

That is to say, they would be entertaining were it not for the fact that pranksters tend to lack imagination. When a prankster calls, it’s always about chastity belts.

Not only is it unimaginative, since we’ve heard it a thousand times before, it’s also surprisingly easy to get into one. Have a look at this specimen from the Wellcome Collection. Aside from being an interesting historical artefact, it’s also secured by a simple padlock.

All it takes is a pair of bolt cutters and you’re in. Any school caretaker can sort you out, no need to bother us!

“There’s this girl I like…”

On a similar theme, we once received a call from a fellow who needed some relationship advice. “Will you help me find the key to her heart?” he asked me.

The trouble with pranksters is that they’re afraid to stay on the line for too long, presumably out of fear of being upbraided by an irate locksmith. In reality, though, I have no qualms about giving relationship advice to strangers…

Ctrl Key for Lenovo ThinkPad T420

I remember being in Romania on holiday, desperately looking for a shop that would sell me stamps. I wanted to send a postcard. A typical tourist, I had absolutely no knowledge of the Romanian language beyond “please” and “thank you”.

After trying a whole load of strangers, I finally met someone who could speak English. “You’re looking for stamps? I know just the place,” he said, enthusiastically.

But the shop he took me to sold rubber stamps, not postage stamps! What a bust that was!

The exact same sort of misunderstanding happens at Metrolocks on a regular basis, too. Given our substantial key-cutting expertise, we often boast about how we can provide any key.

Sometimes folks come to us looking for replacement keys for computer keyboards. As good as we are with keys, that is beyond even us!

Keys in Cambridge

The last amusing erroneous enquiry I’d like to write about is the trouble with keys in Cambridge.

In the past, people would search on Google for “keys in Cambridge”, but they weren’t looking for someone like us at all.

Gonville & Caius College, Cambridge You see, the University of Cambridge is grouped into a bunch of colleges, one of which is known as Gonville & Caius College (pictured). Many people don’t know that Caius is, in this case, pronounced exactly like “keys”.

So, when people search for “keys in Cambridge”, they’re often just looking for information about Caius, unaware of its peculiar spelling.

We engineered our online advertising to take these sorts of enquiries into account, so that nobody asks about Cambridge colleges any longer. It was fun while it lasted.

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