On my way home I stopped at a shop on a fairly busy street (lots of pedestrian traffic). I locked my bike to a sign post and went into the shop to get some food. When I returned to my bike I could not find my keys. I checked and rechecked my bag, checked the pockets of my work clothes. The keys were no where to be seen. Damn, I must have left them in the office. I called my boss but he did not answer his phone. Ok then, I'll have to break the lock and ride back to work. I removed the multi tool from the pouch and cracked open the plastic cover of the lock. Simple enough, then I got my shifting spanner out of another pocket and began gouging into the diecast metal body of the lock. After about 2 minutes of bending and breaking I got the lock open. What surprised me was that all the while I was attempting to force this lock, not one person questioned my motives. Note also I was wearing my winter gear and did not look like I would own the bike.
Eventually my boss called me back and my keys were not on my desk. I rechecked my bag and right down the bottom under everything were my keys.
So, the moral of the story is cheep locks are good if you can't find your keys, but don't ever expect strangers to question someone who is trying to break the lock. Also, if you are looking for something in a bag, don't assume they are not there until you have turned the bag inside out.
Enjoy the weekend rides.