1041 – Case of the Approachable Safe
Lady Marpbels will create a safe place where you can sleep as well as a bespoke gumball nestled in a bog at sunset.
Episode 1041 – Case of the Approachable Safe
[START OF RECORDING]
SCOOTER: Friends beyond the binary, ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, and my patron peeps, I’m gonna sing to you because in the podcast, it keeps my…patron peeps, what up, patron peeps?
INTRO: [INTRO MUSIC] Hey, are you up all night tossing, turning, mind racing? Trouble getting to sleep? Trouble staying asleep? Well, welcome. This is Sleep With Me, the podcast that puts you to sleep. We do it with a bedtime story. Alls you need to do is get in bed, turn out the lights, and press play. I’m gonna do the rest. What I’m going to attempt to do is create a safe place where you could set aside whatever’s keeping you awake. It could be thoughts, things on your mind from the past, the present, or the future, plans, or…whatever it is. It could be thoughts, it could be feelings, emotions related to the thoughts or emotions that are just there. It could be physical sensations, it could be changes in your routine, your temperature, your time.
Whatever’s going on, there’s so many things that I’ve heard from listeners. It all shares a lot of things. So, let me just go off-script here. The reason I make the show is because you deserve a good night’s sleep. Ideally, if I can do anything for you, it’s to underline that fact, but also to help you feel less alone even though this is digital and it’s a podcast. I’m here to keep you company because if you can’t get to sleep, at least you deserve to kinda feel like you have a friendly voice in the deep, dark night. So, now I got mixed up ‘cause I normally don’t go…I went off-script. I don’t have a actual script. Whatever’s keeping you awake, thoughts, feelings…whatever it is, I’m gonna try to take your mind off of that and keep you company.
Oh, I guess there’s just a different way of saying what I already say; keep you company while you drift off. That’s really what my job is, to be your bore-friend, your bore-bae, your bore-cuz, your bore-sib, your bore-bestie, your bore-bor, your neigh-bore. I got that mixed up. Some listeners said hey, what about neigh-bore? I said oh, bore-bor? They said, we knew that’s what you meant, Scoots. Thank you. Okay, but whatever’s keeping you awake, I’d like to take your mind off that. What I propose to do here is to create a safe place or a safe that feels approach…a safe; an approachable safe, one of the great…that wasn’t…that was…I tried to pitch that to…I said, what about the new…what about New Marple? How does that sound to you? They said, we don’t have the rights to that. I said, the New Marple Mysteries?
We could just use that…and they said no, you can’t. I said, The Case of the Approachable Safe: A New Marple Mystery. They said Scoots, one, wait a second…and they said we don’t…this…we never took this call. There’s no record…and then they said the call’s coming from inside your imagination once again, Scoots. A New Marple Mystery: The Case of the Approachable Safe. It was a early morning when the great safe store of…wherever…we’re gonna be in the Lakelands area. The main safe store for all regions nearby, where everybody got their safe, was having a big event called The Approachable Safe Event. Oh, sorry, I’m supposed to be creating…oh, so I’m gonna try to create a safe place or an approachable place that you say well, I kinda feel safe. I’m not so sure about it.
That’s why the…they said, step right in. Old…I don’t know, whoever runs the safe…the old approach…The Case of the Approachable Safe. I guess we’ll do…that’s what will be the title of tonight’s episode. Let’s just do that so I can move on, right? What was the other thing I got stuck on? That’s one of the things that happens in this. People say, what are you…? I say yeah, I get…not only do I get mixed up, I get bogged down in my own thoughts. My thoughts are bog-like already. Then I say, there’s…these…there’s boggy thoughts in this here bog. Anyway, so, I’m gonna try to create a safe place where you could set aside whatever’s keeping you awake by sending my voice across the deep, dark night.
I’m gonna use lulling, soothing, creaky, dulcet tones. If there was a…the Comforting Bog; another…that’s not…that’s where the New Marple Mysteries…she lives out on the end of a lane near the Comforting Bog. That’s what she calls it. That’s where she does her thinking. Now she’s known as Lady Marple, not Miss Marple, because she’s royalty or whatever. OB, or I don’t know how any of that works. So, you don’t say Old Lady Marple because only Scoots says that and then she says no, Lady Marple. I say yes, Miss Marple, I’ll call you Lady Marple until I forget. But when I’m using…when I’m narrating you thinking out on the…whatever, the Comforting Bog…is that what it was called? Okay, so anyway, what are you…what are we talking about here?
Send my voice…oh, creaky, dulcet tones, pointless meanders, superfluous tangents. You’ve witnessed all of those in just a few moments. In just eight short minutes of intro, I went way off-topic and got mixed up, because I’m here to keep you company and put you to sleep, not entertain you or engage you or make any sense or get to the point or ever really get started. So if you’re new, a couple things you might want to know; this podcast is very different. It’s very strange, so if you feel a reaction to it, it does take some getting used to. Of course, you might be doubtful or skeptical when you get to this podcast ‘cause you probably tried a lot of other stuff to put you to sleep, right? Maybe not all of that worked. Maybe none of it worked. So, I’m here to try to keep you company while you fall asleep.
So, this is a podcast you don’t really listen to. You just kinda barely pay attention to it, but you can listen. So, it’s kind of a…just takes getting used to doing that. It’s like looking at the clouds when you feel like it, I guess. I don’t know. I don’t know how to describe it because the podcast doesn’t even make any sense to me, ‘cause my job’s not to make any sense. So, it’s a podcast you just barely listen to. It’s here to keep you company. It also doesn’t put you to sleep; it’s here while you fall asleep. I’m here to take your mind off of stuff and be your friend. Like I said, your companion, so that it doesn’t feel as lonely as it’s felt for some of us in the deep, dark night.
The good news is if you can’t sleep, I’ll be here for an hour to keep you company whether you’re awake or asleep, so if you’re not listening to me, I’m here to keep you company, but if you are, I’m here to keep you company. So, no pressure to fall asleep, no pressure to listen. I make this show because I know how it feels and you deserve a good night’s sleep. Our world will be a better place if you get the rest you need and you deserve, ‘cause I want your life to be better. You deserve it. So, that’s why I make the show. Also, the…for new listeners…what up, regular listeners? How about that? We just invented a…I guess I’ll say…I don’t think Lady Marple…the New Lady Marple Mysteries is…’cause I’d say no, no, it doesn’t have anything to do with Miss Marple. This is Lady Marple and it’s new.
When they approach me, not with an offer. They say, this is not an offer to do business with you. I’d say well…I’d say, you don’t think that’s a good idea, The Case of the Approachable Safe? It’s a very approachable mystery. Never gets…here’s the spoiler; it never gets solved. So, oh, structure of the show throws people off. So, if you’re new, I want you to know the structure of the show is very intentional, but I understand if it throws you off. It starts off with a greeting so you feel seen and welcome, then there’s listener support, like support for you, then there’s support for the show via Patreon and our sponsors, then there’s the intro which goes on and on and on. Some people think it’s part of the business or the housekeeping. It’s not; it’s a show within a show that gives you time to wind down.
It’s familiar every time and it’s different every time. It gives you a chance to get some distance from the daytime and get ready for bed. So, whether it’s part of your bedtime routine and you’re winding down or you’re doing…brushing your teeth or you’re in bed, you’re petting your pets or you’re doing some other chill activity, the intro…you could fall asleep to it. There’s a percentage of listeners that fall asleep, there’s a percentage of listeners that skip the show, but the intentionality behind it is that it gives you a chance to wind down. So, but you can use…the great thing about the podcast is…flexible. People use it in all sorts of different ways. So, that’s the intro. Then there’s business again.
The business keeps the show free coming out twice a week, which has always been my goal; keep it free, not as part of some company. Then there’s a story. I thought it was gonna be one thing. Tonight I guess it’ll be some sort of investigation, at least, into whatever I just said, The Case of the Soothing Spa? I don’t think it was that one. That one won’t be solved because I say, there’s no spa that could soothe me, unless I can walk around…unless it’s a spa…a pacing-based spa. A spa you could pace in. Scooter’s Spa; come around, come on in, walk…don’t sit still. The spa where you don’t sit still. Way off-topic. So, oh, the…so, there’s a bedtime story. That you could fall asleep to, but other people listen to it for companionship in the deep, dark night or a break during the day, or if you just can’t sleep. You got plenty of time.
That’ll go on for like, forty, fifty minutes, an hour plus. Then there’s thank-yous at the end of the show. So, that’s the structure of the show, that’s why I make the show, and alls I can say is I’m glad you’re here. I work really hard. I yearn and I strive. Give the show a couple of tries and see if it helps. If not, there’s other sleep podcasts and stuff at sleepwithmepodcast.com/nothankyou. But I’m happier here and I really hope I can help you fall asleep. Thanks again for coming by, and here’s a couple of ways I’m able to be here for you for free twice a week.
Alright everybody, this is…you’re in for a treat tonight because we’re telling another story that I knew about and then I forgot about, but now I can never forget about it. It’s called The Case of the Approachable Safe. It’s from a collection of stories…untold tales that…somewhere in my imagination, these stories are being told, and every once in a while I catch a whisper, and then I go back and I say wait, tell me more. Is this one of those Lady Marple Mysteries? They say Scoots, that’s not a good idea. I say well, it’s a possibility, though, that somewhere out on a bog, a comforting bog, lives Lady Marple. She was once a regular person, Miss Marple or Mrs. Marple or Ms. Marple or…Marple, as she preferred. Just call me Marple.
She lives out on…in…and I say, when I think…when I say Lady Marple, I always think of…I think it was…I don’t know if…I always think that I can’t remember when…there was the G.I. Joe toys I played with as a lad. They were action figures or action figurines. You know, the G.I. Joe characters were known…I think one of the advancements they had was…a comedian said this, but I think that it was true, that they had a kung-fu grip which meant that their…so, they had…oh man, now I’m trying to think of how to describe it. Reticulated? Is that what it is? They had elbows and knees and hip joints and shoulder joints, but then at some point they also became able to rotate their arms below the elbow, and that was a pretty big advancement.
They also had a neck joint, so their necks could…their heads could move around. When you talk about toys…not…Lady Marple’s like excuse me, I thought this was The Case of the Missing Safe. I said yeah, we’ll get there, but I was thinking of Lady Jaye or Lady Jane who was one of the top three…so, when I played with G.I. Joes, there was no G.I. Joe. I think the earlier generation, there was a G.I. Joe character. So, G.I. Joe was a brand and I think it was a super-secret…you say Scoots, doesn’t that stand for everything you stand against at this point? I say well, pretty much. But they were the…they were great heroes and heroines; Lady Jaye…I don’t know…I think it was Duke, Lady Jaye, and somebody else. Griswald, maybe? I don’t know who the third person was…who were kinda running the show.
I was never…I guess as a kid, like I said, I would root for the other team because they were always the underdogs. I think probably it informed an entire generation of storytelling or storytellers that played with toys, because it was a bit of a trope back then in the 80s, that…the futility of the villains, because the 80s were an era…oh boy, were they an era, when villainy was not considered…even though they had Gordon Gecko…I don’t know. There’s a lot of repression going on, and part of that repression was saying well, we’re gonna have the childhood hero…the childhood cartoons only…villainy is futility. Don’t know what my point was other than Lady Jaye or Lady Jane was one of them, but she…I don’t think she was royalty. All that to say I’ve gone royally off-topic.
So, okay, so let’s get back to the point at hand, which is that…where were we? Okay, so, Lady Marple; nothing to do…you say Scoots, I’ve heard of Marples before. Is this anything like the more famous Marple? I say no, this is Lady Marple. She was granted the…whatever order is bestowed on you to be a Lady by the Queen. But she was still solving cases, as I teased in the opening of the show. She lived out on a bog and she had a porch, a back porch, that looked out on the bog, where she would sit at night. It actually had…what do you call that? A little silk screen or silk netting around the porch so she could sit out there and not have to worry about the bog-based beings coming and bothering her.
That was one of the first cases she solved, The Case of the Bog-Based Beings That Got On My Nerves When I Decided to Live At A Bog: The Lady Marple Story, Part 44. That was a part of her biography series, not a case…well, not a case we’re discussing, ‘cause it was pretty easily solved. Well, it wasn’t easily solved. She tried other stuff; fans is one of the things she tried, low-powered and high-powered fans to blow away any. She said, that kinda worked, but it also got on my nerves and used energy and wasn’t 100%…not as effective as other things. She said, this works great because I can see the bog and I can hear the bog. I can soak it in. It has a doorway in there, I think that zips up, so she can go out towards the bog if she wants to. But this is also her back porch.
A little bit more rustic than what you would…what they call in Florida a lanai, which is different, I think, than other places in the world. When I hear lanai, I think of…I think of the ocean and Hawaii and just a beautiful view. It could be of the mountains. But in Florida, a lanai is a screened-in…an outdoors, indoors, more or less, or I guess…it’s a confused space. It is…for a multitude of reasons, because one, it’s kinda outdoors, it’s kinda indoors. It has screens, so you can see stuff, but then with the temperature in Florida, you’re like well, I could just go outside, or I’m gonna go inside where the AC is. Normally, lanai won’t have AC unless…then it’s…also has windows. Then you’re like well, this is just a porch now. I think that’s what we call them, a screened-in porch.
Now, Lady Marple’s porch is not screened-in; it’s kind of…under a net? I don’t know. Tough to say. Tough to say, but very inventive, and fits the mystique or whatever you want to say. Fits the space very nicely. That’s where Lady Marple liked to sit. She liked to think, she liked to have her tea. She drank tea and coffee. She would have tea…between waking up and 10:45, coffee. 10:45 to 2:00 PM, tea. After 2:00 PM, other stuff ‘til about 8:00. Herbal tea with…non-caffeinated. Sometimes she would make sun tea, and actually she could make it on the porch ‘cause it was…because of the netting or the screening, the sun could still get there. That was one of her favorite things; she had a western-facing view of the bog, so she could sit there.
She would tell her guests…they never necessary…she’d say, you haven’t seen the sun set ‘til you’ve seen it set over a bog. But they would normally be distracted. Very few people can be enthralled by a bog, and it’s a good test. I could tell you, you haven’t been enthralled ‘til you’ve been enthralled by a bog, because you could sit out there, you can listen to the bog, and then likely…and then like Lady Marple would say, the sounds change as the sun sets on a bog. She even would break into song sometimes, doing a little Elton John. I think the…’cause Elton John probably has a song that she could easily change to…and put in words like when the sun sets on a bog. I think you would probably have to say when the sun goes down on a bog or something.
But not many people appreciate it ‘cause they think of the…their times at the ocean or the lake or some other area…over-hyped, not…that doesn’t get the love of a bog. Understandably, ‘cause you can’t really swim in a bog. A lot of people associate bogs and bugs, but this…in this case, the best of both worlds when you’re with Lady Marple, ‘cause she solved that case. But she was sitting out there and one of the things she liked to do is just relax, and she also found another thing soothing, which was a giant gumball machine. She not found…only found it…well, one of the reasons she found it soothing is her guests could get a gumball. She would always do a slow burn where she would give them a coin when they arrived, and she’d always say hold onto this for me, particularly if there was children, or if there was adults, particularly if there was someone who might be labeled…persnickety?
Is that the right word? She would hand them a coin and say oh, by the way, hold onto this for me. If they said more, she said well, we’re gonna need it later, maybe. She would take them out. Eventually they would make their way at some point to her treasured area, unless they were a guest that was guest-focused. They say no, I’m not interested in your home. I’m interested in being a guest in your home. But normally they would work their way out there. It was a beautiful gumball machine. At first glance, most people wouldn’t notice it because they say, you seen one…not…I don’t think many people have said this, but it is a assumption you make that you’re just not even aware of. You say, I’ve seen…if I’ve seen one gumball machine, I’ve seen them all. I say well, that’s probably and totally impossible.
But it’s like, Malcolm Gladwell had a chapter about it in one of his books. Wink, I think, was the one, that said yeah, it’s called the gumball machine paradox or something where you say okay, you just assume they’re all…you know they’re all different, but you don’t…you say well, I don’t have…well, if I need some gum, I got a pack in my pocket now. Modern era of convenience. Then you may say Scoots, no, I can picture a…and I say well, yeah, that’s your archetypal gumball machine in your mind. I can see it, too. It’s got that metal stuff, it’s got some glass stuff, probably some metal on the top. Maybe it’s got a stand or dare I say a shaft to the floor? Maybe it’s got…maybe it’s a little antique-looking. Maybe you’re picturing more of something in a globe-like shape. You say, okay.
Now, Lady Marple’s, her’s was a little bit more…not grand. I was gonna say grandiose, but it kind of was…it was glass and it was the size of one of those big water bottles back when people would talk about stuff around the water cooler at the office. But it was a little bit higher off the ground. One of her secrets was that the glass and its thickness and the setting of the sun, it was all complementary of one another. It did go down into something very similar, but a little bit more color than just a red or a blue. You had some yellows…into a gumball…a familiar gumball machine with the thing where you put the coin in and you twist it, and then some gumball comes out. Now, another little thing about Lady Marple was there’s not one size of gumball. One-size gumball does not fit all.
She would choose her gumballs very wisely and with a lot of…she was…you would say is a gumball connoisseur because she had traveled the world and learned what parts of the world have gumballs, what don’t, and where gumball manufacturing takes place, and something that they haven’t heard of in Brooklyn or Oakland as of the time I’m recording this, bespoke gumballs. Somewhere in the world, they’re making them. Whether it’s Notting Hill or a cool part of Singapore; I’m not…they say Scoots, please don’t…you’re not…and I say okay, well, one day. I’m a little bit behind that, but she knew where there was bespoke gumballs. She didn’t really make her own gumballs because she preferred to support gumball artisans as well as mass-manufactured gumballs.
She actually knew a lot about the process, and so, she…and color was a big part of it. She would actually curate her own gumball machine from time to time, but she also found it soothing. Oh, did I mention she used different-sized gumballs in there? Occasionally she’d say well, I’m feeling something…what…she’d go online if needed or she’d call. She’d hop on the old air horn or whatever they call it, and she’d say you got anything in a Chicklet shape? But I’m looking for something not quite aquamarine. They’d say Lady Marple, we’ll…she said, put it on the Marple account, stat. Or don’t…send it out but just make sure to send it properly. But yeah, she could curate her gumball machine.
She would use…now, she was very conscientious about…so, she would put on gloves, rubber gloves or latex gloves or latex-free gloves; I’m not sure because I wasn’t…I don’t know. I was never there when she was curating her…or organizing…she didn’t really call it organizing. Working on the gumball machine. I mean, some people knit. In one of her dreams that was never realized, she was a big fan of the Tate Modern, and she was actually setting aside funds and maybe she still is. I don’t know why I’m talking about it in the past tense, but I guess ‘cause I don’t have the same hope in my heart that Lady Marple does. But she did hold a dream of having a giant…she thought it would be better as a overturned water bottle, but something probably eight stories wide, thirty stories tall, glass…it was something to do…another artisan; not her.
Then filled with gumball…art as gumballs and actual gumballs, of course, so that at some point…or multiple points, you could get a gumball from the gumball machine. So, she did…she said oh yeah, then maybe they could…I can maybe get…maybe they could…some people could do something similar to sand art with gumballs. Then they could present it and then we see as it changes…she said then the art will change as people chew gum. Then maybe there’s even a wall of chewed gum before…’cause they say don’t come in this museum, or please don’t spit your…that’s one thing I always wonder about; in New York City when I lived there, when I visit there, and I always say am I wrong or is that gum on the subway…? Especially coming out of the platforms into the street.
But sometimes on the subway platforms, I say is that gum on the…forty-year-old gum there, or is it something else? Then I say well boy, if it’s not gum, don’t…please don’t tell me, unless it’s tar. But I say, what is that…? Again, you could trace back…I say, when did people start…what generation was like yeah, just spit it on the ground, man? I say okay, I realize it’s inconvenient for you to hold your gum and spit it in a garbage can or at least stick it underneath something like they do nowadays. But you’re gonna take something that’s extremely sticky, you’re just gonna spit it on the ground and assume it never impacts you…or if someone else behaves…they say that’s…someone should write a…man, get an…once again, I need an anthropologist over here.
So, alls I could say is Lady Marple loved…not all the time, but that was one of her hobbies, was…she called it gumballing with no g. So, if someone from her family called, they say, what are you doing? She said, I’m gumballing. Just gumballing around. They say, you and that…they’d…they say Nana Marple, you and that gumball machine. They say, what are you work…? She said well, I’m just greasing it right now, making sure…doing the annual maintenance. But sometimes she would reorganize it, and…but she liked to just look at it. That was one of the things. She’s just turning…and we all have those things. We forget about them, that you just look at and you say huh, that’s nice. I like how I feel when I just stare at this with an empty mind, or staring at that empties my mind.
I would propose to say, do you think we could…Lady Marple, what do you say about having someone from the ROYGBIV Institute weigh in on your gumball machine? She would say, what’s the ROYGBIV Institute? I’d say well, it’s the institute I invented. Or ROYGBIV Labs; we could also call it that. But that would give accreditation to Christmas on holiday lights. They’d say, these are ROYGBIV-approved. She’d say well, what would that mean? I say well, we’ll work on that. I say, but you…I say, these lights are ROYGBIV-accredited. I’d say, maybe it means…I say, we’ll have to get into color theory, probably, or it could just be a nonsense thing that we’re using. But I say wow, this…is that a ROYGBIV-approved gumball machine?
You would say, not just a gumball machine; those are ROYGBIV-accredited gumballs in there. I say, are those bespoke? So, she liked looking at it. She also liked the surprised of the guests when…to see. This was the thing…this is the thing about sleuths that nobody talks about, especially sleuths with a big heart like Lady Marple. You don’t become a lady just because you solved the greatest cases in the history of England or because you had…you were associated with another Marple and they said oh, and you just said well, if you want to make me a lady, that’s fine. I’m not that Marple, but I have done a lot in one day. Hopefully I’ll have a giant gumball receptacle outside the Tate Modern and a wall for chewing gum before people go into the museum.
Even part of the art would be someone doing a mouth scan that would be somewhat performative in some way. Maybe even a spitting area as part of it. But so, oh boy, where was I? Lady Marple…oh, so, one thing about sleuths with big hearts like Lady Marple is they love sleuthing for the next great sleuth. Like, you got the Stiltons. I don’t know who came first, Thea or Geronimo Stilton, but those two are inter…I don’t know. Fancy…I’m sure Fancy Nancy found someone. So, she was always on the lookout for someone…particularly someone like her, a young woman with a spark in her eye, but a weary step. Sometimes those two things come in common, she would say, occasionally. It didn’t have to be someone; it could be someone else.
It could be one of her friends or someone…she was always open to being surprised, too, by who would sleuth out what the coin was for or who was just naive enough and childlike enough to say oh, how much are these gumballs? She would just laugh and say well, why don’t you use that coin in your pocket? Where other people say, is this what the coin was for? If you used the coin she gave you, of course there would be a special gumball along with a regular gumball…along…so, there was another door where the special gumball would come out and it would make a clanging noise. But for you to…definitely because she put so much variety of gumballs in that gumball machine, you’d have to keep your hands under there, otherwise…I mean, it was a pretty heavy door, but some of the…sometimes she would put sprinkle-sized gumball…I don’t know if those were gumbles.
I don’t know what they’re called, tiny gumballs. That was another song she would like to sing, though, to people, based on the Don Ho song Tiny Bubbles. She’d sing Tiny Gumballs. So, yeah, so she would love that when people thought of it, but otherwise she’d say…if some…she’d wait for people to mention it. Now, I know some of you are even asking yourself were there other coin-operated machines in Lady Marple’s abode? I’d say, quite possibly. But this kinda leads us into the great case of the approachable safe, and I just added that great in there to underline the fact that every case that Lady Marple’s on is a great case. But yeah, once upon a time, not that far from where Lady Marple was chilling out, kicking at the bog, gumballing around, there was a town and it was not that far away.
It was the main…it had the big…that’s one thing that has been impacted but not gone away, is the safe business. I’m talking about safes, S-A…F-A…S-F…safe and face spelled the…? S-A-F-E, because…well, you can buy some of that stuff online. Some of them are really heavy. It tends to be a specialized business. There’s also older ones that might…or some people want a refurbished one. But the thing is also that people forget. Now, this particular safe place was…it was known as Patience’s Safes and it was run by someone named Patience, but they also had a sign out front that said Safes, Safes, Safe. So, it was a really…most people knew it as Safes…Triple Safes or Triple Safe or Safe, Safe, Safe, or for shorthand, Safes, ‘cause you say it three times or you could just say it once with an s and people would know in this area.
If they know about safes and the safe business, they know about Safes. They had an online presence, but don’t bother because this was years ago. So, they don’t anymore. You say well, I don’t find…and I said yeah, that’s right. This is a story that hasn’t been told yet, so it wouldn’t be online, now that you’re listening to it via online. But this just wasn’t one business; Patience had multi-businesses. New safes, refurbished safes, buying safes, and selling them. So, you find a safe…’cause this region had…it was a…had enough of a metropolitan region and enough of different generations that people would find old safes and they’d say hey, this is that. They also pioneered some landmark laws about opening safes. Actually, that was one of their big online things, was explaining legalities of safes and safes.
It was…just to explain you the basics, ‘cause I mean, I wouldn’t know what to do. You say, you find a safe; does that mean you can open it? Well then, what if you can’t get it open? What happens? Proving the…whatever, custodia…the whatever, stewardship of safes; I think that was one of the blog posts. So, that was…that’s the place known as Safes. So, not only did they have a multi-level business and they were known around the greater region, and then people in the business, they’d say okay, well, did you…okay, you’re between London and Manchester. Okay, well, Safes is the only place to go. Go talk to Patience. I’d say otherwise, you got these other two…but other businesses, you could consult. They all had their own specialties. So, they would also work together to stay relevant.
But staying relevant’s more than just being good at your job and training people so they could be good at their jobs in the future; it’s being a part of the community. So, Safes was part of the local community. They had Tumblers for Tumbles which was a big festival they had every year. They had Singing to the Safes Fest. Again, this is kind of in one of those idyllic situations, like a green…central green and safes and some of the other pubs, restaurants, they were facing it. Now, one of the advantages Patience had was Patience did own the building and was able to…it was a two…it was a building big enough for two…like, two businesses. So, you say okay, well, that’s one thing that…advantage Patience had. ‘Cause you say, what happened to those other safe businesses?
I’d say well, that was one thing, is the real estate prices impinged on their margins, where Patience, that building was paid off. Normally…whatever. We don’t want to get into the specifics of it, but they would…they had a couple yearly festivals. They were part of the community and all that. They would have conductors, they would have all that kind of stuff, and then as the years got on, as we went from the aughts to whatever they’re gonna call the…after the aughts, the business was getting thinner and thinner but didn’t stop the one Safes exist…and locksmiths and all that kind of stuff, and that people were gonna still need safes from time to time, a variety of safes, and that there’s older safes and there’s that whole thing. You know, maybe you want to see if you could get the safe open, if that’s allowed.
Maybe you want to sell the…you say, I got this safe; is it worth anything? It’s really friggin’ heavy. But it wasn’t quite big enough ‘cause Patience said okay, well, as I start to look at the safe business and the…I would…decline’s the wrong word, but the narrowing of it and the people in the safe business…other than Big Safe; that’s what they called the big safe companies. But they needed one another anyway. Patience said we gotta get the word out. We gotta bring…we gotta keep…every few years, we gotta do something big to raise overall general awareness in safes ‘cause really, you got the movies, heist movies and stuff like that, and other than that…it used to be, kids were raised…with cartoons, they saw safes all the time, so they were used to seeing safes in other…places other than heist movies or in-behind paintings in billionaire and super spy things.
So, they said if you raise the awareness of safes every few years, then somebody’s gonna be like huh, what was the…? I just found that safe in that attic there…or lock box or whatever. I can’t get it open. I don’t know what to do. Well, you could go on YouTube. You say yeah, and…believe me, Patience would have had YouTube figured out if that was still going on. But they’d say oh, what about that Patience’s Safe out in the Lakelands or whatever? They say oh, yeah, yeah. What’s the name of that? Let’s take a trip out there. That was another thing their website featured; making a weekend, a safe weekend, if you will. Whether it was couples or families, they would have recommendations, places to stay, other businesses, coupons, even.
But even that, so the…every year, Patience was looking for ideas; strong people to lift safes, juggling safes, different stuff like that. But one year, they…this mysterious person came to town and she said, you called me into town. They said, I’m the mysterious person. Patience said, I’m glad you’re here. Are you ready to do your thing? They said, yes. I’m gonna sit out there in the town square, something called the Approachable Safe. Have you been working on it? Do you have the safe that meets my specifications? Patience said yeah, I do. I do, I do. They said good, good, good. Then they…Patience said, I still don’t understand what the idea is, though. You had me build this safe and you’re gonna start…you’re gonna put it in the town square and you’re gonna call it the Approachable Safe, and you’re gonna put up signs.
Then what? The mysterious person said just wait, Patience. Be patient, Patience, and you will see. But Patience was willing to try. These outside-of-the-box ideas rarely make sense, so stay tuned. Worked out everything with the town, and then they said they had a big unveiling. They had covered in a…covered in cloaks or whatever, mysterious draperies, and they hired school choirs and school bands to play. They had a little midway and food and jugglers and stuff, vendors…just a fun day. Then they said, now…Patience said this reflected on the year of the town. The politicians spoke. Then the person of mystery said now, I present the Approachable Safe. They pulled off the thing and there sitting on a pedestal was a safe, and you’d say it was a…is it a green? Is that a deep green color?
It was one of those ones that looks very heavy, about the…well, a bit bigger than one of those refrigerators that hotels or dorms have. One knob on there, whatever that thing is called — again, I’m not in the safe business — that you spin around, combination spinner thing, and a handle that looked like if you pulled it down, that would open the door; it would. The safe itself was hard to tell how old it was. It was a deep, deep color. It didn’t have any chips or dents on it or scrapes. Then there was all these signs; This is the Approach…Do You Dare Approach the Approachable Safe? Who Will Approach It? Everybody thought it was funny for about four days, even though the mysterious person was changing the signs out. People would walk up to the safe. At first kids did it and then finally someone touched it.
That took actually forty-five minutes for…before the first person touched it. It happened to be a eight-year-old girl. Meanwhile there’s all these high school lads watching. Then they were willing to spin the knob and stuff, but nothing happened. Then it became…for a brief time, it already had worked because this just happened to be the start of tourist season. People would come and they’d take selfies with it ‘cause then it became a thing, like #approachablesafe, like a hashtag or something. They said go ahead and hug it. Do you dare approach it? Do you dare embrace it? Who will kiss the approachable safe? It even had things for keeping it hygienic and all that. The safe stayed there, you know, and it rained, and it was sunny.
The mysterious person, they got paid and they left town, which Patience did think was strange, but this…Patience was like well, that was…I guess it kinda worked because when…it didn’t go totally viral but it’s more popular than the other selfie spots. People…then Patience was like, let’s have sign competitions. Then they started telling…Patience even had some…worked with the local libraries and then some of the local papers to have fic…Approachable Safe fanfiction categories, so people were writing all these stories. That was really fun. Then Patience would judge them and say oh wow, this one was great. This one where the safe became a best friend or this one where the safe helped, even though we can’t open the safe, that…in your story, it held an engagement ring or the special recipe or just held a simple note that said Love One Another.
Those are some of Patience’s favorite ones. But then the time wore on and it just got less and less popular. Tourism became the fall or the autumn, and some of the people in the town were like yo, Patience, what’s up with that safe? You gonna just leave it out there? Isn’t it…it’s getting kinda old, you know? Patience pointed out that I have contractually…I’m able to keep it up there ‘til the first of January, so…and also, I had a…I also had a contract with this mysterious person, LLC, or whatever…this…to keep it up. That was a contract. I already paid them, so I don’t know; there might be something still in store. They said okay, but then another month went by and they said people have opinions, you know?
Especially with the internet and the ability…and they said, you know, man, that safe’s…I used to go out there with my picnic, but I got a safe sitting there and it reminds me of stuff, or I don’t like it, it’s on my nerves. You gotta get rid of it, Patience. Patience said well, I don’t want to be a quibbler, but I don’t…no, I can’t…I just can’t just get rid of it, one. Two, I’m kind of…I think I feel like I’m obligated to keep it up. I feel like…and that became a thing just ‘cause some people just got a little bit bent about it and they said no, no, no, we don’t care what your obligations are or what the town said. There’s a new town council now anyway, and they’re revoking the permit that they already gave you. Patience said well, that’s not really my style, because they…that’s just symbolic. You can’t really do that, anyway.
Patience said, I’ll tell you what. We’re getting…there’s some intense feelings here about the safe. I think we’ve got ourselves a bit of a mystery, like The Case of the Approachable Safe. Maybe we could get Lady Marple to come and figure this out for everybody. So, they said, do you think you can get Lady Marple to come? Can you get her to come on a weekend? Because then we could have people…she’s a lady; that would be great and beloved…I know she says she’s not that same Marple and has nothing to do with that Marple, but no one believes her anyway. She’s done great stuff. She’s solved mysteries…wow. Okay, Patience, forget everything we said. They said actually, could you do it on this back holiday weekend? Because we could have…we could call it the Upper-Middle Linda Mystery Days.
Patience said yeah, believe it or not, I took care of some…we have a working relationship, so I’ll double-check. But Patience was able to get Lady Marble…Marple to come out, and did explain that yeah, it’s a bit of a public thing because…and Lady Marple said I’d be happy to do it. Sounds curious to me. So, Lady Marple came out and the town again made a big deal about it. It got even more press. Lady Marple to come and approach the Approachable Safe; news at 5:00. This is great. It again kinda raised awareness of not only safes in general, but of Safes, the…Patience’s place, and Patience used it to kinda raise money for some of the town charities that they were involved in. Lady Marple was more than willing to do that. Then the town kinda gathered and then said okay, well, when’s Lady Marple gonna inspect the…?
Lady Marple said, this could be a little performative; I understand it. Set me up a chair. If you get a gumball machine, that would be great. If not, I can…I’m not gonna bring my personal gumball machine, but…and maybe we’ll do a interview or something, a little bit like a chat, not related to the gumball machine. I mean, not related to the safe. Then I’ll talk about my thoughts about this safe. People could watch me inspect the safe and all that, and approach it. So, that day came, and then they did everything, they got everything set up, and Lady Marple walked around the safe, looked at it curiously, took some notes, even, measured it for fun, got under it, ran around it, skipped around it, hit it with a rubber hammer, hit it with a tin…a little mining hammer, listened to it with a stethoscope, sprayed it with air, a bunch of stuff.
Did a lot of stuff that…chewed gum, walked around it, hugged it, took a selfie with it, and then sat down for the interview. First, they did a general…kind of a puff piece but also curious about Lady Marple. Again, she said yeah, I’m not that Marple. They said well, what do you think about the safe? She goes well, I just want to…I want you to think about some things before I tell you the conclusion, ‘cause it’s gonna be somewhat…dissatisfactory. That’s kinda the thing about this. She goes, the goal was right. She goes, the thing about safes is they don’t feel approachable. She goes, it’s sitting there in the sun, but it still feels cold, but it didn’t feel cold when people were dancing around it and…she said, do you see what I mean?
It was just by calling it the Approachable…she goes, that was one of the tricks, was by calling it the Approachable Safe and daring people to approach it, it made it approachable. She goes, but as soon as that wore off, it again became this kind of thing that’s not really ominous, but safes, you don’t really think about them, right? They said, okay. They said so, was this some sort of marketing stunt? She goes well, that’s…this Patience’s Safe has a history of doing marketing stunts every single year, if I’m correct, multiple times if you count the community events. They said, you’re right. They said oh, so is it Patience…was the mysterious person? Lady Marple said, not quite.
It had to be someone who wanted to…maybe that started a business with the intention of slowly raising enough money to fund an art installation at the Tate Modern or if she couldn’t get the Tate Modern…or she couldn’t get the idea, it’ll be like well, I could put this much down. What other super-rich person is gonna fund this? Maybe the Queen will hear about it. Maybe…or maybe she would do something and get coverage for her new business, where she solves case…and they said so, you’re using this as a mark…this is a marketing opportunity to…of your marketing opportunities. Lady Marple said yeah, eyeballs equal gumballs. She said by the way, if anybody’s watching, picture this giant gumball machine in front of the Tate Modern. They said…and then she said one second, please.
Everybody got kind of irritable because…and she says, is anybody…how many people have tried to open the safe? Raise your hand. She said, how many people actually know the silly rules behind opening some of these locks? A few kids that had opened lockers…the…you gotta go skip by it left, skip by it or whatever. She said yeah, that’s ridiculous, too. Then she said, is any…then there was people from the cryptography clubs and stuff who had actually tried to get the combination. They had tried latitudes and longitudes and breaking the case of the Approachable Safe and a bunch of different stuff. Then she kind of giggled and she…they said, was it public knowledge? She said, kind of. You could have found it out, but it would have been hard. So, I don’t blame any of you. She goes, ‘cause it’s Patience’s birthday.
So then they said Patience, what’s your birthday? Then she picked one of the kids that raised their hand; she said come on up and open the safe for all of us. She came and opened it and she said oh, there’s some papers in there. She said oh, that’s interesting. Why don’t you approach the papers and take them out and bring them to the…? ‘Cause by now, some of the town council was pish-poshing. Then Lady Marple said I’ll read these, I’ll read these. It was a future plan from Patience who said in the future, I’m not gonna be in the safe business forever. But hopefully I’ll be in it for a while longer, but I also own these two…I own the shop and the building the shop’s in, which houses another shop which brings in all this rent and it has this much value.
I have the business and this is what I’ve liked to do when I’m…when I go to crack the big safe in the sky, is to give all this to the townspeople, but in this very deliberate way. On top of that, because I think of this hype, we’re gonna auction…we’re auctioning this off in the next ten minutes online. That was Lady Marple’s idea. Lady Marple said…reading from the notes from Patience. That money’s gonna go to establish this fund to create apprentice and a…what do you call that? To pay for the education of kids, anywhere in that region or beyond; full scholarship with housing and food and everything…that people say, I might want to be in the safe business, and that forever safes will be a place of…and they said Lady Marple did it, and the calculations are we could run this thing for ninety years.
Then everything else would go to the town, these things in the town. But this will be a working/teaching business where we’ll make safes approachable to the next few generations of safesmiths or locksmiths. But then of course, because she was also a show person, Lady Marple did say okay, open the safe door the whole way. They had a false back in there that looked like it was…you could see into the whole safe, but you really couldn’t. What you couldn’t see…people had seen it before, but they thought it was just for rainwater, and someone before the presentation had cleaned it out. In the stand that the safe was on was a channel running down each sides, running down the front of it off of a lip, which people said oh, that’s a brilliant way to keep water from pooling around the safe. But she said children, gather around there.
Get in line and gather around and put your hands under that. It looks like a little nozzle spout. She pulled the back off and then there was a slow release machine she had in the back of the safe releasing gumballs. That was how the case of the Approachable Safe turned out, pretty well for everybody except for the people who got…they said, I don’t know how that turned out. Then everybody lied down because it was a beautiful day, chewing…listen to the town of an entire community chewing gum, laying in the grass of the town green. Some people dreaming of the Tate Modern, some people dreaming of becoming a locksmith or a safesmith or cracking the big safe in the sky, or just dreaming up wacky ideas to keep things interesting, where they…to focus the attention on stuff. You say oh, I needed a refresh there. Goodnight.
[END OF RECORDING]
- Safe Safe Safe
- Agatha Christie
- Wall Street
- “Tiny Bubbles” – Don Ho
Notable Talking Points:
- A back porch that looks out on the bog
- One size gumball does not fit all
- Slowly raising money to fund a Tate Modern exhibit