Whisked away, lost in the shuffle


Ann Kuehn - Contributing columnist



Out of a typical 16-hour day, I waste at least 12 looking for things.

For starters, there is my car which, despite my living in Clinton County for 30 years, still has no idea of how to reach destinations. The “witch” (remember Ann, this is a family newspaper) in the box” screeches “Correction! Correction!”

She best have good medical coverage in case I learn her identity.

It is amazing how small, innate articles manage to move, dodge, hide. Is it possible that electronic magnetism whisks items to undisclosed destinations? Three items in particular — cell phone, reading glasses, and car keys. They have designated spaces with the rule that they are never, ever to relocate — akin to telling a three-year-old the same.

The phone is the worst offender. It is black, therefore impossible to see on dark surfaces, of which this house has an abundance. I do not have a landline, therefore am unable to phone myself in order to find the cell phone.

I can’t call a friend to do the same. How would I dial? My new hearing aids are attached to the cell phone — a huge asset since the phone is flat and my ear is not. I can put down the phone and wander off still talking, thus forgetting when the wanderings are over, and where the phone is.

Glasses. Two kinds. One for reading; one for distance. Recently I purchased bifocals, to allow me to shop at Kroger without flipping glasses every other second. (I do insist on reading unit prices). They seem to be working if I don’t look down when descending steps.

These glasses are obedient, staying in my purse. The reading glasses by usage are peripatetic from room to room and, because my mind leaps from idea to idea, the glasses get lost in the subsequent shuffle.

Car keys. Attached to the house key, both attached to a six-inch hard blue plastic cylinder. The latter is for me to defend myself against a would-be attacker by jamming it into the soft tissue just below the hyoid bone. Probably a better tactic since, at 84, I doubt if my knee/foot could raise itself enough for choice #2.

The car keys sit in a basket on a table adjacent to the garage door. So what is the problem? Coming in, often with my arms filled, the key remains in my purse until it again needs to be located. OR, in a coat pocket. OR, still in the ignition. OR in the trunk door, since this ancient car was manufactured prior to having an open/close trunk button.

Along with the aforementioned items are recipes. I disposed of my multiple recipe books, preferring jamming individual recipes in “The Joy of Cooking” held together with blue masking tape. Do recipes not know how to read?

How do stuffed peppers end in the “meat” section as opposed to vegetables? Or the next time, turn themselves around and decide it is, after all, a vegetable.

Shrimp fried rice refuses to remain under fish, opting for rice and pastas. I could have cooked the stupid dish in the time it takes to locate it. Supposedly to minimize the confusion, casseroles, desserts and breakfast items are in a wooden recipe box since they do not necessarily adhere to “Joy’s” index. But then they tend to haphazardly file under the inappropriate index card.

I am Episcopalian. We, too, recognize Saints, but tend to be a little lax in recalling specifics. For years I have called on St. Joseph, who obligingly has come through.

In writing this, I thought I best check for accuracy. Whoops! St. Joseph sells houses. St. Anthony helps with lost things. At this point, I might as well stick with St. Joseph.

We have a long, long history.

Ann Kuehn resides at Ohio Living Cape May in Wilmington. She says, “I gravitated to Ohio at age 18 and never left” and moved to Sabina in 1987.

Ann Kuehn

Contributing columnist