Tag Archives: Lost and found

My Fix-It Guy

First, never lose a phone. Especially in an airport, where tech-loving monsters lurk.

Five minutes after forgetting my phone, I dashed back. It already had landed in a monster’s maw.

My husband tracked my cell’s location. Still in that area! We searched until our flight began boarding.

No monsters. He/she must have morphed back into human form.

No phone.

Rather than pay for rescheduling, with a possible overnight stay, we flew home.

While my family will use a microwave until it makes us glow in the dark, Hubby comes from a family of fixers. They conquer all weird car noises. They can smell a suspicious flame from miles away. If a meteor dents their patio furniture, serenity — and restored furniture — soon return to their backyard.

So, once home, Hubby continued his mission. He attempted to contact the airport lost and found — kept as secret as the Federal Witness Protection Program. Upon finally unmasking the department’s identity, he learned they allowed no phone calls. He completed a complicated online form.

Lost and found did respond. Zero success.

Hubby ordered a new phone. However, rather than keeping my original number, as we requested, the company representative deactivated it. She buried it on the distant cyber-planet Zorxx, where no human had gone before.

Ack! Changing one’s cell number compares to switching universes. Or purses.

Still, I said, “If the new number doesn’t make me glow in the dark—”

“No, the company made the mistake,” Hubby declared. “They should fix it.”

He soon discovered our communication company, while short on communication, was adept at designing phone trees:

(Music plays. And plays. And plays.)

Recording: Welcome to Hope-You-Die-Before-We-Answer Company. To pay your bill, press one. If you are ecstatic with our service, press two—

Hubby: I paid our bill. I’m anything but ecstatic with your service.

Recording: Thank you. Press four for our 12-phone plan. Press five for our 24-phone plan. Press six—”

Hubby: If I have a complaint?

Recording: No, if you want to know what we had for lunch.

Hubby: I don’t CARE!

Recording: The caviar was delicious. Click.

(Music plays again. And again. And again.)

Recording: Welcome to Hope-You-Die-Before-We-Answer Phone Company. …

When Hubby finally forced himself to request the lunch menu, he made progress. Fourteen people gave him different advice. After three weeks, none had restored my phone number.

While practicing medicine, my husband fought government regulations regarding bandage width. He grappled with insurance demands that cancer patients, instead of battling disease with radiation, visit tanning beds.

I believed in my fix-it warrior. He would crash through red tape. Force them to retrieve my original phone number from the planet Zorxx.

I was right!

Your Extraordinary Ordinary: Who’s your family fix-it person?

Lost and Found Superhero

If I were to design a superhero, I wouldn’t create a Man of Steel or Woman in spandex. No power bracelets or magic rings. My superhero wouldn’t need a gas-guzzling super-car that always breaks the speed limit but never is issued even a warning.

Instead, I’d invent a superhero who finds things.

No computers or radar allowed. I want a superhero with an inborn, omniscient talent for zipping up black holes before they suck in all left socks, kids’ Spam Museum permission slips, and pens that write.

My superhero need not leap tall buildings in a single bound. I just want her to find fat-free mayo on sale. Minty breath mints. And Seductive Salmon.

Not an amorous fish. I want the lipstick. The moment I deem one my favorite, cosmetic gurus shriek, “Rachael Phillips likes it! Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!” My marketing kiss of death sends Seductive Salmon posthaste to a black hole.

Where our keys also reside. They disappear, especially when I was due somewhere 20 minutes ago. I find the keys to our first apartment and those to old cars we maintained when our children still (theoretically) lived at home. But current car keys? They vanished upon our signing the purchase agreement. I eventually find them — often in the freezer, beside my frosted-over cell phone. Still, both continually play truant.

As do gas stations. When driving to catch a predawn flight, I inevitably discover my gas gauge points below E. At this signal, all stations at all freeway exits disguise themselves as bait shops.

Please do not tell me to trust a GPS. Once, when I traveled with writers so hungry we gnawed our books, one of those cruel, lady-voiced demons sent us to five different boarded-up restaurants.

I might consider a super-GPS that could locate tax receipts. Correction: the right tax receipts. I readily unearth one that records I ate a Belly Burger in Yazoo City, Mississippi, in 1999. But has anyone seen my 2020 W-2?

I also should program my superhero to lose things for me.

For example, my champion would swallow hated lyrics and toxic tunes that imprint themselves on my mental hard drive.

However, my superhero wouldn’t swallow pizza, strawberry-rhubarb pie, or moose tracks sundaes. That’s my job. Hers: banish the calories.

She’d deliver me from public restroom stalls with empty toilet paper spools and broken locks. My superhero would absorb the fines for library books I checked out during the first Bush administration. She’d scare away dandelions and crabgrass.

Oh, Lost and Found Superhero, please be real! I’ll give you a big, gas-guzzling superhero car.

But you will have to find the keys.

Your Extraordinary Ordinary: Do you need a Lost and Found Superhero?