Off-duty: Maybe I should just forget my age

My iPod is missing.

This is the second time. No one stole it; it’s just missing.

To make it worse, it’s only the size of a stamp. I don’t even know why they bother with an earphone. I could just place it in my ear — but I’d probably forget where it was and how embarrassing would that be when you show up at the shrink’s office claiming to hear voices and he pulls your iPod out of your ear?

The last iPod I lost was found in my car by the car-wash girl. She found it two weeks after it went out of warranty. I remember having it in the car, along with the receipt, because the battery was bad. Where do these things go?

One thing I learned from other detectives back in the detective days was to eliminate the probable and start looking at the improbable, and then the nearly impossible. Well, that never works when you lose stuff. I looked all over for the first missing iPod and could have sworn I checked that car up and down.

One car wash later, that teenage girl politely placed it in the front seat after finding it in the back seat all tucked in where I had already searched. Maybe it was luck. But more than likely, she possesses super powers. I’m sure of that because I checked that area many times. I’m sure of it — I think. I don’t really remember and I guess there lies the problem.

I have a leaving-the-house checklist:

1. Gun

2. Phone

3. Wallet

I have, on occasion, forgotten one of the three. It is a painful return to the house from 10 miles away, but as a law-enforcement officer it would be professionally irresponsible for me to leave the house without my phone.

This past week I paced around the house for five full minutes looking for my phone — all the while talking on it. Also this week I realized I had left my phone at home and started back for it only to realize it was in my jacket pocket, which I had checked twice.

Another lesson from Uncle Dewey

According to my Uncle Dewey, all lost objects will eventually begin a process of movement that will take them back to the original location where you thought they were lost from. He’s now in rehab but the idea is credible.

If not, then I’m on a losing streak.

We all know stereotyping is wrong, yet we equate memory loss with getting older to give that air of “goodness” about us in front of others. But I’m supposed to be forgetful because I’m getting older? Not so fast. I was also forgetful when I was 20!

Admittedly, I’m not getting any better at it. Twice I’ve left my wife and at least one claimed child either at the ball park or at a relative’s house after I thought they made other transportation plans. This doesn’t sit well with my wife who, if angry enough, could fall back on her SWAT training and tactically assault me. And that’s no fun, except sometimes on Saturday nights when we play “Dragnet” after a couple of martinis.

How do we banish all our stereotypical images built up over so many years? We can try but they linger, just like the bad taste in your mouth after watching “Real Housewives of Atlanta.” (Stop with the hateful emails, ladies. It’s a free advertisement.)

I concentrated on a stereotype-free week. I got to Wednesday when I pulled up to a four-way stop. Across from me was a nice elderly blonde on her cellphone.

I put the car in park and ran.

OK, I stereotyped a bit. Get over yourselves. Don’t think I don’t know that those tacky cop/doughnut jokes aren’t in your happy-hour repertoire.

I only wish I could remember one.

10 comments Add your comment

Big Al

March 19th, 2011
8:49 am

Talk about your stereotypical images, what is a cop doing drinking martinis? I thought beer was the main drink followed by bourbon on the rocks.

Martinis are for super agents. Remember the phrase “shaken but not stirred?”


March 19th, 2011
11:12 am

Sort of like when you can’t find your glasses b/c they are resting atop your head. Worse yet, you can’t find your sunglasses and you’re wearing them…inside.


March 19th, 2011
5:12 pm

Or, like the man my mama married, in the throes of Alzheimers, who “lost” the Chicago O’Hare airport and was puzzled about how to open a banana. Left the house to get milk 2 blocks away and ended up in Chattanooga. Worst was when he lost his glasses and 4 hours later found them tucked inside his undershorts!

Cop Supporter

March 21st, 2011
10:22 am

Haha..I have done that with the cell phone looking all over for it and talking on it the whole time. :)


March 21st, 2011
12:19 pm

You never fail to amuse, and this time I laughed out loud with the Dragnet comment! Thanks for making my day brighter with you wacky way of looking at things!

Don't Tread

March 21st, 2011
3:38 pm

4. iPod (or smartphone that can play music)

Because FM radio really bites in Atlanta.

Lt. Steve

March 22nd, 2011
12:48 am

Still can’t find the iPod. Lost my glasses this afternoon. Still missing as well. There IS a Bizzarro World.

Pick a Deli

March 22nd, 2011
8:54 am

Pick a Deli

March 23rd, 2011
7:31 am

The Cop vs the Donut. The forgetful cop vs the bakery confection. I wonder if the good detective ever left his gun in the house, but remembered to take the canoli with him……


March 24th, 2011
12:44 am

Thanks for reiterating that you are not competent to be a law enforcement officer. Retire now before you are responsible for someones death !