Broken Esc key?!?

· Music

For some reason my Escape key suddenly doesn’t seem to work, at least in the context of “vi”. It’s essential in that program for dropping back out of text entry mode into command mode (for such things as, oh, saving and quitting).
I can’t find any references to broken Esc keys in tiMacs anywhere online, so I don’t know if this is common or rare, if it’s a crumb under the key or a short of some kind, or even some bizarre kinds of software failure/bug/feature.
It sure makes editing simple text files (such as, oh, .htaccess) a lot more difficult, especially since TextEdit seems to insist on saving stuff as RTF instead of allowing simple text files. What’s up with that?