Sunday, August 9, 2009

NOT The Luckiest Person On The Planet

I have only had my wallet stolen or lost or accidentally left behind one time in my entire life. Now, if you are like
The Man Purse recovered after the theft.
me, and you live with Rachael, this could seem exceptional. Without exaggerating, I would guess that Rachael has left her purse in a public place at least 25-30 times. I know most of you are sitting there right now thinking I'm exaggerating that number just for effect on my blog. I assure you I am not. Any of our close friends can vouch for this.

The amazing thing is that we have never lost one thing out of it. Ever.

In fact, we have had people go to some amazing lengths to ensure that it was returned safely. Please see Rachael's post, The Luckiest Person On The Planet.

I have never, ever, even one time left my wallet in a public place.

But of course, I am the one to have mine stolen.

I can remember the night well. Rachael and I were enjoying a peaceful, relaxing time shopping at Wal-Mart in Rocklin, CA. This was in our Pre-Kids life, so most evenings were peaceful and relaxing. All of you parents know what I'm talking about.

We were checking out at the cash register.

While in line, I noticed the Ice Cold, Tantalizingly Beautiful, Good-To-The-Last-Drop, Diet Cokes, placed so completely conspicuously close to me. Now, I have mastered avoiding a few temptations in life. Smoking- never have. Drinking- never have. (At least intentionally. That's another post, although it does not involve Rachael and so may never find it's way on this blog. We'll see.)

Diet Coke, though.

I still have a weakness.

I fought the good fight for at least 2.23 seconds before giving in. During that period of time, my face became contorted. Sweat began to pour. My hands began to shake.

I knew there was only one thing to help.

I grabbed a Diet Coke.

Now, I know that there are many people out there that think it is quite funny to play practical jokes on friends or strangers. Some will do almost anything as long as they get a good laugh. A certain memory of a bull-horn in Las Vegas comes to mind, but that again is another story.

I believe I fell victim to someone's practical joke that night in Wal-Mart so long ago.

As soon as I paid for the soda, I calmly twisted off the lid in a slow-motion manner. OK, OK, so I tore it off as quickly as I could.

I was so anticipating the first taste of Ice Cold Diet Coke. The first taste is always the best. It kind of primes your taste buds for the rest of Heaven's Nectar to follow.

Imagine my dismay, when instead of being able to take a nice refreshing drink, the soda spurted all over me and the floor.

Apparently, someone had thought it would be funny to shake an Ice Cold Diet Coke up and put it back in the cooler. I looked around the store. Many people were laughing. Many people diverted their eyes when I looked at them. I knew they couldn't all be guilty, but I was sure it had to be one of them.

After staring at everyone that so much as smiled in my direction, I was saddened to see that I was still not going to be able to drink my soda.

There was a fairly large pool of Not So Ice Cold Diet Coke on the floor.

Now, I may be a lot of things, but I try hard to not be inconsiderate. I did not want to take the chance of having someone slip in the mess that I had created. I asked the checker if they had any paper towels. They did not, but pointed me in the right direction.

At this point in my life, I had a rather large wallet that Rachael had given to me as a present. All of my friends called it my man-purse and seemed to gain a great deal of satisfaction out of laughing at me about it. I am not sure but I think they were all just jealous. I know someday, they'll all have one.

I know this, because I think someday I'm going to give each of them one for Christmas.

Whatever the case, this wallet was much too big to fit in my pocket, so I was keeping it in the small compartment section of the shopping cart.

I turned away from my cart and walked about 12-15 feet away to get some paper towels. I retrieved them and immediately walked back and worked on my mess. When I was finished, I threw the towels away and was ready to leave the store.

I looked down at my cart.

My wallet was gone.

I had literally only left the cart for about 20 seconds. In that small amount of time, some heinous creature, some human waste, some ectoplasmic speck of putrid vile, had stolen my wallet. OK, so I'm not even sure what an ectoplasmic speck is, but I'm sure it is a fitting description.

I looked over at Rachael, for she had been standing there the entire time. I was sure she had pulled out my wallet to make me think that someone had stolen it. However, she was standing there, hands where I could see them, face transfixed. She was in her Zone. Someone had brazenly stolen my wallet out of the shopping cart that she has standing about 3 feet from. They were just lucky that Rachael retreats to her Zones early, often, and for extended periods of time. While her Zone appears to be quite the incredible place to be, it did not prove conducive to apprehending the would-be thief that stole my wallet.

Now, normally, I would have been upset.

However, in this case, I noticed that they hadn't really taken anything of value.

I calmly reached down, picked up my Ice Cold Diet Coke, and finally was able to take my long-awaited first sip.

After spending most of the morning canceling all my credit cards and mourning my losses, I went back to the store the next day and found my wallet behind a row of bushes. Someone had stripped it clean and discarded it like an unwanted carcass, which was totally unbelievable, because it was really a great wallet. If my man-purse jealous friends had found it, I know they'd still be carrying it today.

Every single thing in the entire wallet was gone. I apparently do not have the luck that Rachael does. I keep trying to convince her that I need to rub her for good luck once in awhile, but she doesn't seem to see how that would help. I say it sure couldn't hurt.

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