Tuesday, May 09, 2006

What’s the Cut Off Date?

I attended a meeting of the Greater Houston Locksmiths Association this evening as I prepare to meet the State of Texas mandatory continuing education requirements in order to keep my license and remain in business as I wrote last week. ( linked via title bar ) They would appear to be a group of independent locksmiths intent on preserving their means of making a living through a unified effort, not much different than myself.

My name was brought up and I was officially voted in as a member by those present. I paid my dues for the remainder of the year and turned in all the forms; a neat looking passport photo that I got at Walgreen’s last night which is the same one on my blogsite, a copy of my Texas Locksmith license, a couple of T. F. Stern & Co. business cards and a couple of pieces of our letterhead. I was able to sit in on a class that counted as one credit hour toward that mandatory continuing education requirement, “How to fix what goes wrong”.

The instructor had an official class outline, showed various specialty tools that would get most locksmiths past a rotten situation; broken key extractions, removing pieces of broken drill bit from a lock, improved lock pick sets and things like that. He managed to poke a hole in his finger with one of the sharp ended tools; nothing like being a locksmith. Everyone who was there for the class signed the back of the roster form so that the credit could be documented and recorded by the Education chairperson.

During the meeting a general reminder was made regarding a benefit fund raising raffle that was being conducted to defray the medical bills of a fellow locksmith who’d had his leg amputated. There was going to be some kind of drawing in the near future and tickets for that raffle had to be purchased before the next meeting. One fellow sitting next to me had missed part of the announcement as he blurted out, “What’s the cut off date?” I thought it was a poor choice of words under the circumstances as I clipped his arm with my elbow and muffled my inappropriate laugh.

I wonder if this group of folks is ready for my sense of humor. What’s that line, “I’m not sure I want to be a member of any group that would have me”?

Well, I signed up to take the necessary classes over the next several weeks that will cover my. . .; maybe I should start that part over, . . .that will complete my mandatory continuing education requirements. There’s a two hour block of instruction that will attempt to explain the operations of the DPS/PSB, those folks who now run our every day lives and business operations contrary to the free market system which I’d come to love in the past; that should be simply marvelous, as Billy Crystal would say. I wonder, will I have to check my pistol at the door?
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