“Has anyone seen my jeans?” This was one of the most recent inquiries involving lost items at my house. It came from my oldest, now adult, son. I’m beginning to wonder if the days of my being asked to locate missing things for my children will ever come to an end. My oldest is 25 and I have a 14-year-old ... so, if he turns out the same way, I fear I may be facing 35 years of my life looking for the lost. And then there’s my Cute Little German Mother, who has a list of her own ... which usually requires many more questions for us to understand exactly what’s missing. She tends to leave a lot to the imagination. Here’s a typical exchange between she and one of my sarcastic kids. “Haf any off you seen dat little sing I had?” “What sing ... uh, thing?” “You know, dat little sing I use ven I can’t see.” “Your glasses?” These kinds of responses result in hostility almost immediately. “No! Dat little sing vit da glass ... oh, you know vut I’m trying to say!” “The magnifying glass?” “Yes #@?%! ... can’t you just say dat in da first place!” You think I exaggerate? Not a bit. The missing usually remains so, while the questions go on and on. With the male members of the family, the questions come even before they have tried to look for themselves. “Where’s the toothpaste?” “Do we have any peanut butter?” No, one cannot assume that they first checked the bathroom cabinet or the pantry. The missing jeans did, in fact, turn out to be missing. My son was upset about them because he said he had looked absolutely everywhere, including everyone else’s drawers and closets. It turns out that he had given my younger son a stack of jeans that were too small for him ... he’s put on a little weight these days. While I was helping my younger son with something in his room, he showed me the stack of pants, holding one pair up to his waist with a look of confusion and despair. “Mom, Josh gave me these pants – these will never, ever fit me.” It was kind of cute if you can picture it. He’s about 5’9”, maybe 5’10”, and 130 pounds soaking wet. My oldest is 6’1” and about 225, if he’s naked and just had a haircut. “Well,” I said, “just put them all in my trunk and we’ll take them to HAAM,” I said. And take them I did. When Josh’s new and favorite jeans turned up missing, I realized what must have happened. I suggested he go to HAAM and look for them. “Oh, they’re bound to cost less than you paid the first time,” I said with as much enthusiasm as I could. “They’re probably still there, and the money is used to help people.” That didn’t go over so well and the jeans are probably still there. I was glad, though, that one of the many mysteries of the missing had been solved. Normally, especially if I ask where something went, the response is always the same ... the ignorant and the innocent. “I don’t know.” “I didn’t touch it.” “I never used it.” I haven’t seen that in years.” “I have no idea what you’re talking about.” “I dunt know anysing about dat.” One of the most puzzling losses was when the doorstop from my bathroom vanished. I keep forgetting to replace it. But I sometimes get a painful reminder if I go in and out in the dark. You know, sometimes if you have to get up at night, you just don’t want to adjust to any bright light. Last week I caught the Little Cutie red-handed, or shall we say, lipped. “Have you seen that bottle of wine I put in the refrigerator?” I asked. “I sink I had a glass of dat,” she said, with an unusually large grin, and very purple lips and tongue. “Ver you saving dat for somesing?” I caught a glimpse of the now-empty bottle peeking at me from behind her recliner. “I suppose not.” This year I’m asking Santa for video surveillance; for the people already in my house. Patsy welcomes your comments at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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