Every morning, I stuff the same things in the four pockets of my slacks and in the vest pocket of my shirt. Every evening, when I get home from work, I unload these things – putting them in the same spot – on the desk of my home office. Next morning, the stuff is there — pocket-ready. Over the years of shoving a wallet in my back left pocket, the fabric on some of my pants has become worn. And faded. In fact, on a few of my pants, the faint outline of the words “Prince Gardner” can be seen. My back right pocket bears the faded outline of a scrambled set of keys.
Last week, I tossed some dirty clothes down the laundry chute to the basement. The chute is in a closet that also serves as a repository for clothes destined for donation to a local church. As I tossed the clothes down the chute, I noticed – there on top of some old t-shirts was my favorite pair of dark blue Bonobo slacks with the white outline of a wallet on the back pocket. I picked them up, shook them off, and decided to put them on. I asked Donna why my Bonobos were in the closet. “I put them there. You can’t wear those. Look at them.” I looked. They appeared brand new to me. The outline of a wallet and scrambled keys added character.
Later, I went down to the kitchen and told Donna that there were a couple of her outfits that appeared worn so I’d placed in the closet for donation to the church. I got the “look.” “That is very different” she said. The emphatic “very” signaled that I was on very thin ice. I think I know now what happened to my black jeans, my ripped chinos, my “I’m the Boss” sweatshirt and my green bib overalls. . . .