Vanishing Act

August 24, 2015

Robert doesn’t like when the things disappear. The matter of fact neither do I.

A couple of years ago, Robert suddenly became agitated as he couldn’t find one of his three favorite dinner plates.  He seemed to check everything: cupboard, dishwasher, refrigerator, and all the rooms. To calm him down, I decided to find the plate myself.  I couldn’t.  I looked in all the typical places, which Robert had checked already and in less typical places such as the garbage containers, under the furniture,  garage, and  the laundry room.

I knew it was irrational to look inside the washing machine or the drier for the dinner plate, but not as irrational as  sudden vanishing of the dish. As my search became more and more futile with every absurdly chosen place, Robert became more  and more and more anxious and fixated on the plate.

But then, so was I.  Yes, I knew that the aliens didn’t kidnap the plate for whatever purpose.  I knew that the robbers didn’t sneak inside the house just to grab one old plate.  I knew it.  But then, what other explanation there could be for the vanishing  of the plate?

Well, there was another explanation.  The plate was waiting in the microwave still holding some forgotten food. (I don’t remember what.)

I don’t know who discover it, but both of us, Robert and I , were greatly relieved. We certainly didn’t want aliens or robbers sneaking behind our backs.

It was then when I  realized what Robert probably  felt when we had disposed of some of the things without his knowledge.

Because Robert always had difficulties parting with things, we erroneously believed that it would be more convenient to get rid of the unwanted things when he was not present.  Big mistake.  Robert wouldn’t cease looking for missing items and that including searching through all garbage cans.

We have learned that if the plate breaks, Robert has to see the broken plate before placing it in the trash.  Robert has to see his worn out clothes torn to a few pieces before letting them go in a rag hamper.  Only that can stop him from hours if not days of searching and asking and demanding an answer.  However, the verbally provided explanation is not as convincing as visual clarification. As they say, “The picture is worth thousand words.”

To explain the disappearance of an everyday article, more than thousand words are needed.

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