Monday, June 21, 2010

Coded Messages

Not long ago, I finished a book titled Empire, by Orson Scott Card. It was pretty average, thanks for asking. The point I wish to raise however, is that the hard core black ops group within its pages communicates in Farsi to avoid exposing their covert plans.

I'm just like them.

Or was, anyway.

It started in Form 2 (Year 8/Grade 7). I'd seen the key to the code in a book I'd read and, apparently entertaining an early manifestation of paranoia/thrill-seeking/Nancy Drew-worship, memorised it, taught it to my best friend at the time, educated my sisters, and used it faithfully.

That opening image is an example of the kind of note I routinely transposed.

I have a hazy recollection of chastising a coded note recipient for having to consult the "Key" to decipher a note I'd passed them. You had to be hard core to be my friend.

I realise the risk I am taking by sharing this with you. By going public with one of my trade secrets (clearly unforgotten), I am reducing its efficacy.

But I've been brought to this point by how frequently I think, "If only this person knew the code!" Say, I'm leaving a present in a mailbox late at night, or wanting to return an item to someone's locked car - how handy it would be to quickly scribe a coded note for their door or windshield that they could read, but opportunistic mailbox/top-of-tyre-thieves could not; "Have left your bugle on top of your left rear wheel, you left it at Joe's." Handy, right? We can't have a bugle getting into the wrong hands. Or when Haki leaves his keys at home when carpooling, I could leave a note out in broad daylight advising where a key to get in (when he returns home before me) has been concealed, and meaty-handed roofers would have no idea what it said.

Enough chit chat, it must be killing you.

Impress your kids / spouse / friends / colleagues. Invite them to join you in an elite circle of in-the-know-ness. Rather, to join us. /cue maniacal laughter
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