Prior to going into the mental health system for several years, I had purchased a spare car key at Home Depot for about $4.
After being released from the system, I once again went to buy a spare key, with a five dollar bill in my hand. The clerk told me it would cost $200. He saw the look of shock on my face, and mumbled something about security and keeping your car from being stolen, but to be honest, I barely listened.
I told the clerk I would not be buying the key, I would take my chances on having one key.
So what happened while I was mentally out of commission was pretty obvious. An auto industry creep dreamed of a way to steal my money and your money in a big way. And of course, the key stores were happily in on it.
You need to know, that in all the years I was using a $4 key, I never had a problem. The car always started, the car was nervous stolen, nothing bad happened.
I finally caved in to the system when it involved my son. He was going to school in North Carolina from New York, and he only had one key for his Honda. Although I could chance that for me, I could never chance that for him.
I called around to dozens of key shops and got a quote of $100 for his car key. I had him drive to see me, I gave him a hundred bucks, and gave him explicit instructions to get the key immediately. And he did.
The story gets infinitely stupider. I eventually shell out the big bucks for a key. I end up coming home from mental health and move in with my wife, a very hostile situation. In a fit of anger, one day she takes my spare car key and throws it away. Gone. Tons of bucks gone. But she did that with lots of stuff.
Very fortunately, I no longer live with her, and that fact adds much happiness to my life (a separate story).
As for keys, I guess I’m walking the high wire. But I’d rather do that then fork over tons of dough to some creep.
Let’s hope I don’t have to pay a big price.