I’m a loser, baby…


And my time is a piece of wax
Falling on a termite
That’s choking on the splinters
                             -Beck

I lost my car keys today. I hate losing things.

Theo has been fussy the past couple days. Phoebe went to daycare yesterday (she still goes 3 days a week, which helps us maintain some sanity, and which helps me preserve the illusion that I will be able to get some of my research done), but it was such a fussy day that I was clearly not going to accomplish anything requiring either more than one hand or more than half a brain. I hoped to at least get out of the house, but I barely managed to get dressed and eat breakfast by the time Phoebe was due to come home. By the end of the day I was going a bit stir-crazy.

Theo seemed more calm today, and I was bound and determined to get out. I got a bit of extra sleep, and then managed to get us out the door some time before one. Theo needs some warmer pajamas, so I decided to head to a used children’s clothing store. (I try to explore the reuse options for kids’ clothing. We’ve been lucky to have a large number of hand-me-downs for Theo, including many of Phoebe’s old things.) Then I was going to stop by a fabric store to further my goals of getting together some Halloween costumes. I also thought I might pick up some lunch, as I hadn’t wanted to delay leaving by eating.

My first stop was the used clothing store. Theo was asleep when I got there, and I carried him into the store in his carrier. I spent quite a bit of time in the store, poking around for things for Phoebe as well as Theo, checking out the sale racks and Halloween costumes. Digging through bins of winter hats and mittens. Basically roaming the whole store. I bought quite a few things for both Phoebe and Theo, and took my big bag of clothes and my still-sleeping bucket of baby back to the car. Only to find that I could not actually get in the car. My keys were not in my pocket.

The keys were clearly not in the car, as I’d used the remote to lock the car. Also not on the ground. So I went back in the store to see if they’d been found. I figured that the keys must have fallen out of my pocket while I was shopping. I seriously expected to find them quite quickly. It’s a fairly small, if densely stocked, store. But I looked all over the store, as did the manager and other empoyees. We looked on the floor, in the bins of hats, around the register, in my bag of purchases, the car seat… Nothing. I expect they will find the keys some day, probably stuck to a hanger or in the folds of some hanging item of clothing. Or perhaps one of the various kids that had been playing in the store pocketed them, or stashed them in some toy or shoe.

The people at the store were very helpful, and were nice enough to let me sit in the back room to feed Theo. The manager let me use her phone to call John, and suggested that we could get the car dealership to make a new key for us. Remarkably, John had gone to a meeting in the same town as our car dealership, so this was faster than having him go home and hunt for the other keys.

I ended up spending about 3 hours in the store, what with the time spent shopping, then looking for the keys, then tending to Theo, then waiting for John. I could have gone to lunch, but by the time the plans were underway, it was 3:00, and the closest feasible food options closed at 3:00. I didn’t want to walk too far, as I didn’t have my cell phone. (I also left the diaper bag in the car, as I hadn’t planned to be in the store very long. Sigh.)

Really, things were not that bad. John was able to get and bring me a replacement key (4, actually), all in time to get Phoebe from daycare. Meanwhile, I was in a safe, moderately comfortable place. Theo was with me, and I was able to feed him and walk and bounce him around to calm him, which is largely what I do all day at home anyhow. There was a bathroom, water to drink, a chair to sit in, and the manager even found me some nuts to eat. It was hardly harrowing.

But damn I felt like a loser.

Update: The store called. A customer found my keys stuck to a sweater on one of the racks. Yay. I guess.

(Also, it appears I can’t embed the Beck “Loser” video.)

6 responses to “I’m a loser, baby…

  1. uffda. *hugs*

    it’s awful when the objective part of your brain can process everything and tell you “hey, it’s no big deal” and then the emotional part of your brain says, “yeah? well how about i twist your guts around and make you *feel* like it is?”

    i hate those days.

  2. A locksmith’s wife actually called to thank me for our business: a two month period of frequent calls to their service gave them the capital they needed to buy a house.

    I figure it’s better that I’m partial to locking in, losing, and forgetting keys — and not a child.

    You’ve got your eyes on what counts!

  3. Alejna —

    FWIW, I really don’t know how you manage to be all that you are… and stay sane and together! (This from a single, child-less, etc. yet often way busy person around your age (I think!) half a world away…)

  4. Pingback: some key things « collecting tokens

  5. stuck to a sweater? bizarre.

  6. sounds harrowing to me! at least the keys were in a weird place. that always makes me feel like i’m not so crazy when they weren’t in my purse all along…

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