And those are the words I heard on Saturday night around 6:20pm.
We had finished dinner at one of our favorite pizzerias and had walked down the street to one of those custom popcorn shops that are popping up now as quickly as cupcake joints. As MK was paying for our indulgences, she looked at her hand and noticed that the "rock" was gone.
I almost wish we were psych patients at the time and someone was monitoring our brain waves and activity. I imagine that it plays out something like this:
- The woman thinks about all the sentimentality, the meaning, the love, flashes to the moment she was proposed to, about how she's let down her husband, how it is irreplaceable
- The man thinks, "holy cr@p, that's a shedload of money down the drain, thank GOD I have it insured"
First, I thought about what MK was feeling and how she was freaking out and THEN, I started retracing all the steps and where we've been for the last 2-4 hours. I think it's truly how men are programmed. We're functional beings and given a task we immediately put our brain into full-on process mode to "solve the problem".
To be honest, for the first 10-15 minutes I didn't think once about the emotional part, it was hunter-gatherer "must find ring, must re-track every step until found" caveman mentality. Sappy enough, but this is what "Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus" basically tells us.
Yes, I read that thing 12-13 years ago but at some point it's pretty accurate for most. But didn't anyone other than me think that there was no way John Gray was heterosexual? It's probably what gave him the insight into both genders, but I didn't see him trot out his own wife to give credibility. That said, it's still pretty accurate.
So that's what we did. Backtrack through the popcorn shop, then on the sidewalk all the way back to the pizzeria. I was amazed at the kindness that the two couples showed at the table we sat at in that they all jumped out of their chairs and were on the floor with me looking under our previous table. Along the way, my caveman instincts were mentally marking places we couldn't see/were tough to see so that at 7:00am when I was back in downtown Geneva on my hands and knees I would pay special attention to those "high risk areas"
All shop owners took our name and number in case they or their clean up crews were honest, found it and would call us and everyone was sympathetic and willing to help however they could, which is nice to see in this age of self-importance.
We spent probably twenty minutes looking around our car using a flashing light/glow wand (thank you large circus that was recently in town) to look around the car on the sidewalk and grass with no avail.
After resigning ourselves to move on to the next part of our search, the car and then Walgreen's and all other places my wife stopped during the day as well as ripping apart our house, my wife decided to look in what has affectionately been called "Momma Bag".
Momma Bag is the amalgamation of coloring books, sticker sheets, crayons, markers, pictures, paper, you name it to help occupy the little man's mind and hands when we're out at dinner or wherever. She had been in the bag several times during dinner. She decided to go through it all in the car before I pulled away. I was nervous because it was dark and emptying bags can create further problems.
and there, at the bottom of the bag, was the ring. Several thank God's were exchanged as well as a few Hallelujah's. My wife was relieved. My brain was still categorizing the places I still needed to search (yes, men are a bit slower). I was relieved as well and it made the drive home a lot more pleasant than it could have been. Even on the ride home, I was thinking about how that discussion goes with your Insurance guy.
Every year I curse that "special rider" on our home owners insurance that's covering that specific piece of jewelry as I don't always feel the premium justifies the item. Yep, color me part of the converted. Happy to pay that premium this coming June and for every year afterwards.
The upshot to all of this is that my wife has been shedding pounds like I eat chicken wings (uh, maybe that's not a good example of how we're exhibiting opposite behavior) and I'm so extremely proud of her and her dedication to getting to a healthier life.
With all that is good about that, one has to remember that things like rings and pants don't fit the way they used to. If the pants fall down around your ankles, you're just em-bare-assed, but when a ring falls off, it strikes fear into the hearts of men and women.