Aloysius Kim is telling us a plausible story when he tells us that he learned about picking locks from something a guy at MIT wrote. This is a real-world document, and you can find a copy of it in PDF form here.
I must confess it was happy day for me when I stumbled on the idea of putting lock-picking into a script as a key idea. It works as such a fine metaphor for the thaumatophile:
- Lock-picking is a fine metaphor for penetration, not just in the sense that a pick fits into a lock, but in that it is a way of opening one’s way into unknown but desired spaces.
- But it’s not just a crude penetration. Merely ramming a pick into a lock will never do. You must caress the lock, know, take your time learning its secrets, it, if you are to have any success in opening it.
- Locks are a technology, and picking them a technological skill, so they fit well into the metaphor of mad science.
- Entering forbidden spaces is not just a metaphor for sex, but the very aim of the scientist, the mad scientist in particular. So sex and knowledge and technology all bind into one here.
- And of course, in a place like Gnosis College, where a bizarre but sexy secret might lurk behind any locked door, it’s a hell of a useful device for advancing plots!