Lock-picking expedition #1

by tiresomemoi

3 minutes 15 seconds – 17 January 20143 minutes 15 seconds


Last month I sat in on a lock-picking workshop and came home eager to practice my new skills. Eager as I was, buying a bunch of padlocks to practice on seemed a little silly. Fortunately, before I’d parted with a single centime I had an epiphany. I could practice my skills and perform a public service by working on the eyesores that blight the Pont de l’Archevêché (and many other Paris bridges).


Today was sunny and clear so I packed up my tools and headed out to put my plan into action. I picked my first lock (3 minutes 15 seconds) on the not very crowded Pont Saint-Louis and, feeling confident, moved on to the very crowded Pont de l’Archevêché. There I didn’t fare so well. 21 minutes and 10 frozen digits later I had nary a lock to show for my pains. As I put my tools away, I noticed closed locks scattered below the bridge’s railings. I scooped up a handful of these for continued practice in the warmth and privacy of my own home.


Before – 17 January 2014Locks before


Round two was warmer but only slightly more successful: 3 locks in 31 minutes 53 seconds. The three I opened I opened quickly but the others would not budge. I will try again when time and weather permit. Hopefully, my next report will be of my many successes rather than today’s lack there of.


After** – 17 January 2014Locks after


And speaking of lack of success, it’s clear I’m not going to save Paris’s bridges on my own. Maybe I should start a campaign: Lock pickers for more beautiful bridges! Or perhaps: Pick a lock, save a bridge!**



*nolovelocks.com is a real campaign against these unsightly and misguided tokens of affection.

**The double-heart shaped lock has no keyhole!