Dear Ben Gibbard,
There is a song that I need you to write. It's perfect for you--it's about inanimate material objects, seemingly inconsequential, that I have to look at occasionally, and that randomly strike me as entirely poetic and rich with metaphor.
I work in one of those buildings in Manhattan where there are a bunch of offices and one or two bathrooms on each floor. Each office has their own set of "men" and "women" keys. In fact, all day long I see people in the hallway with their random, oversize plastic (or other) things which the keys are attached to--a giant ladle, a coat hanger, a chunk of wood--in an attempt to make it impossible to accidentally leave behind.
Here's where I think you will really get interested.
Our keys are simple, banged-up bronze ones, attached to binder clips. The clips have old masking tape on them which "Guys" or "Gals," depending. Every time someone goes to the bathroom, they sit the keys, on their binder clips, back onto this electrical box where the lights switch is. But the keys themselves, they sort of flop over into all these different, but still similar positions. The keys are always having some kind of relationship to each other. And it reminds me, sometimes, of love-making.
Sometimes "Guys" is really excited, and points right at "Gals," in a totally perverted way. "Gals" might be absolutely not pointing back at "Guys" with the same fervor, but looking more coy. Sometimes "Gals" is completely ready for whatever "Guys" wants to give her, but "Guys" is flopped over to one side, completely in ignorance. And sometimes they're pointing right at each other. Their metal teeth touching ever so slightly. Whenever I have to take "Guys" with me to the bathroom, I try to bring him back to "Gals" as quickly as possible.
I took this picture with my cell phone. It's not very good, but you get the idea.
Let me know what you think. I like your records.