Password changed, but not easily remembered

It's that time again. No, I am not talking pre-Christmas prep.

I am talking about my password. It's time to make the change.

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The workplace prompt arrived in my email 12 days ago.

"Your active directory password will expire in 14 days," it said.

Then it told me what I needed to do: create a new password of at least seven characters. One character had to be an uppercase letter. One character needed a lowercase letter. One character needed to be a number, and another a non-alphabetic character. There was also this:

I could not use anything that resembled all, or part, of my last 10 passwords.

I ignored the workplace prompt. It returned the next day, and the day after.

This password stuff is a pain. Granted, it's the mother of all first-world problems. But it always gives me grief.

This time, I tried going with the youngest son's middle name, followed by the number seven and an asterisk.

Didn't work. The youngest son's middle name - or part of it - had perhaps been used seven or eight passwords ago.

This time, I'd go with, oh, the name of the street where I had my first apartment, followed by a four and an exclamation mark.

No such luck. The password gods, whoever they are, gave my choice the big thumbs down.

I asked the husband for suggestions.

"Um, I'd go with Vanilla5," he suggested. "You haven't used vanilla recently, have you?" "I'm pretty sure I haven't," I said. "But why vanilla?" "Because you like vanilla ice cream, right?" he said.

"I prefer vanilla fudge ripple," I said. "But that's probably too many characters."

Indeed, it probably would be.

"Let's see," I said. "I think I'll go with iKtetn9$," I said.

"What the heck is that supposed to mean?" asked the husband.

"It's the letters for the word Kitten, all jumbled up," I explained. "Nine represents the number of cats I've had, and the dollar sign indicates that vet bills are really high."

I punched it in.

Bingo, said the password gods. Password accepted.

"You'll never remember it," said the husband.

True enough. It may be no use at all, but at least I made the change.

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