When I lose something…or more accurately have misplaced it…there is no rest for me or anyone near me, until the missing item has reappeared. I do believe in the old prayer to St. Anthony, the patron saint of lost things, or is he the saint of the people who have LOST something?
Either way, I am not ashamed to say that the quickest way to recovery is to recite some version of the verse: This one was told to me by a stranger at the flea market when I was out there selling books:
Tony, Tony, Tony…Something’s lost and can’t be found,
Please help me find it when I turn around.
Many things have been recovered soon after pleading with St. Anthony for help. Finding lost keys are a specialty of the Saint’s, and various and sundry other missing things have been recovered….not only by me, but by various other believers.
Once I even found a silver bracelet that I had lost in the garage. I had been sorting books and must have caught the edge of the cuff bracelet, causing it to slip off of my wrist. That was a mad search, which included a grocery store, pharmacy, restaurant, and several other places. My evil twin even suggested the possibility that some unscrupulous clerk had pocketed my bracelet. (I didn’t really believe that myself, as I have a basic belief in the goodness of people.) The bracelet turned up after several calls to St. Anthony…and an email friend who is a Tarot card reader of some note, and also has a reputation for finding lost things.
Hmm… maybe that’s why it took the Tony, Tony, Tony thing so long. I found the bracelet under a chair, behind a stack of picture frames, under a few boxes of flea market stuff…and a plastic red tablecloth, which may or may not have been key. Just sayin’….
THE CURRENT EMERGENCY SEARCH was one that I have entirely too often. I mentioned in an earlier post, about how I handle my book inventory. Although I was bragging about how well my alphabetical inventory system works, I did include a caveat that IF a given book was not where it was supposed to be… in this case #1746–which should have been between 1745 and 1747, but was not.
Now, this has to be a case of Murphy’s Law of Inventories, because this was the exact book that a customer ordered. It was a book about making Art items from Buttons (the kind on shirts,) and I distinctly remembered being in the book room holding the book and thinking “how mundane.” Yes, that’s what I forget for being judgemental. I also recall my son coming in with his current emergency, pinning his church “Usher” badge to his shirt, and I had to leave the room–with the book in hand–and debating where to shelve it temporarily.
As luck would have it, the very next order that came in was for THAT VERY BOOK. Thus the mad search was on. I have books all over the house, some already inventoried, most not. To cut to the chase, I found the Button book within two feet of my left arm, on a shelf where I keep books that for one reason or another are in a “waiting” status.
I had looked in the very spot several times. It was much smaller than I had remembered it, and had slipped partially behind two neighboring books: one on Tai Chi, and one on Ribbon crafts. The inventory numbers matched several books in the immediate space.
This whole situation where a given book is not readily located happens too often to be coincidental. There are nearly three thousands books in my inventory, on shelves, in order. WHY is the one on order frequently misplaced?
I guess I’ll have to ask St. Anthony that question.