I know that most of you (at least those of you over fifty) have gone through this - the missing wallet syndrome. It deserves its own place in the "Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders." And I am one who suffers from it - at least episodes of it from time to time. Now I have had my pocket picked, I have had a credit card hacked, so I know the tribulations of trying to get a new drivers license, medicare card, credit cards - all those automatic payments - climbing all those telephone trees before you reach customer service, etc. It is a form of self imposed hell - because you know you are burning in a fire that you set for yourself. Somedays I will search for my wallet and find it in my old flannel bathrobe (yes, I am of the generation that puts on a bathrobe when wandering the apartment at night - but why did I put my wallet in its pocket?) I have found it hidden in a secret pocket of one of those LL Bean jackets I wear that have enough pockets for holding fishing tackle and a Bowie knife for chasing off a black bear on Lexington Avenue - and I have usually found it under the inexcusable pile of papers that decorate my desktop. But today I looked in all the logical and illogical places - no wallet. Had I dropped it when I went to use a cash machine? Or paying for groceries in the market? Or did I drop it when I bought my coffee at the cafe in Central Park? Or had my pocket been picked when I bent over to pick up Sam the Lab's poop with my plastic bag - in CP?
Then out of deep despair came inspiration. Every night our cat Byron sneaks into our bed and snuggles between us - a forbidden pleasure because his arrival brings with it some spectacular wheezing and coughing on my part - but Byon is no longer capable of doing that wondrous Abbysinian cat spring from floor to the bed. At 14 he takes it in stages - looking for a box or a nearby chair to do the great leap into the unknown - which means landing on the bed or my foot. So after an hour of searching I fitted myself in the capacious brain of Byron and thought, "I would try the chair - then leap to the night table - then get into the bed, knocking over the old guy's wallet as I do my aerobic ballet. And best of all, the wallet is the same color brown as the wooden floor, so he will never find it - or it will take so long I will have the entertainment of watching him crawling about on all fours looking for it for a few minutes - when it is possible he will spot my cat toy which I am too lazy to recover." And so, dear FB friends, I found the wallet under the night table and was spared the trip to the DMV, the calls to the credit card company, and the bout of self-hatred which comes when I believe that I have lost something and brought this grief upon myself. My recommendation to anyone who has this problem - still to be listed in the "Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders." Get yourself a cat.