I don’t know about you, but I have sweatshirt issues. Specifically, I have a child who owns several sweatshirts—all of which have disappeared. Now I ask you—where the heck are they? Are they on vacation? Is there a special “sweatshirt-only” resort in the South Pacific where all the little sweatshirts go to live? And if there is—isn’t it too hot for them there?
Honestly, I just don’t get it. Junior goes out in the morning with a sweatshirt on. He comes back in the afternoon without a sweatshirt. Okay, I understand that mornings are cold and afternoons—well, they aren’t so cold. So the sweatshirt gets taken off.
And left God only knows where.
Look, is it so much to ask that my child actually remove his sweatshirt in his classroom and put it into his backpack so it doesn’t get lost? Oh, why bother? Obviously, this IS too much to ask or I wouldn’t be spending his college fund on sweatshirts.
Look, it’s not like I haven’t tried to find the darned things, I’ve done everything possible. I’ve labeled all the sweatshirts with Junior’s name. Now you’d think that if another child picked up one of Junior’s sweatshirts and wore it home, his mom might look at it and think, “hmmm, that doesn’t look familiar.” And then, when she laundered it, you’d think she’d realize that her child’s name is different from the name written inside the sweatshirt and she’d return it to the school.
Yeah, you might think that, but you’d be wrong. Because despite my labeling, I haven’t seen one sweatshirt in the lost and found. Once, when Junior was in elementary school I even put his name on the OUTSIDE of the sweatshirt, where it couldn’t be missed. I loved it. That sweatshirt didn’t get lost for three entire weeks. Of course, Junior hated it. He swore he’d never lose another sweatshirt again if I would just not put his name in big, magic marker letters on the back.
So what’s a mother to do? I could humiliate my child forever—or I could become a regular at the lost and found table. Naturally, I picked the humiliation. But one look at my son’s big, brown eyes as he sadly realized that he would go through life—or at least elementary school—wearing his name on his back and I relented.
And that’s how I became a regular at the lost and found.
If you’ve never been to the lost and found, I can tell you, it’s a very scary place. For one thing, there’s not a sweatshirt to be found there. But there are, at any given time, at least five lunch bags with lunch still inside, several t-shirts, numerous pairs of pants, a couple of umbrellas and, once, a pair of smelly old socks.
And I came to realize, that even though my son was coming home without a sweatshirt, there were several kids who were apparently returning home without their pants or t-shirts. And I must say that made me feel better. At least my son wasn’t roaming the school grounds in his underwear.
But it didn’t help me find his sweatshirts.
And I was starting to get really ticked off. I mean, have you seen the cost of sweatshirts nowadays? It’s astronomical. Ounce for ounce a sweatshirt can cost more than a gallon of gas. Okay, maybe that’s a slight exaggeration. But it’s close.
And one day, it became clear to me that my only option was to check every single child in town and find out which one was wearing Junior’s sweatshirt. And that’s when Junior told me about something called “the yard-duty table.” Apparently, at Junior’s school, missing sweatshirts congregate at the yard-duty table for a day or so before being sent to lost and found—where they are never found.
But the good news was, Junior had seen his sweatshirt there. Yes, my son had actually viewed his sweatshirt—and several others that were missing—on the yard-duty table. So I asked—calmly—for Junior to bring home his sweatshirts.
And I’m still waiting. In the meantime, I hold out some hope. After all, by December he’ll have moved on to losing jackets. So I have the entire rest of the school year to figure out how to implant next year’s sweatshirts with a GPS device so I can figure out once and for all where Junior’s sweatshirts are living.
It’s either that—or stake out the yard duty table for the entire school year.Add me to your rss reader | Become a Fan on Facebook!