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11 December 2006

"Leave us in emotional peace."

Seattle Public Library, Seattle, WA, 08-Oct-06

"I must be crazy."

Do you ever feel like you're losing your mind? Of course you do. I do, too -- now more than ever.

At some point yesterday afternoon, I lost an earring. It's not the missing earring that's bothering me -- I mean, aside from the fact that I'd only had the complete pair for about twenty-four hours, it didn't have any sentimental value, wasn't expensive, and can be easily replaced.

What's perplexing is the fact that I lost it. I'm not the type to lose anything, mainly because I have a slightly OCD-ish tendency to constantly check every little thing on my person, from earrings to house keys to lip gloss to subway tokens. I always make sure that things are as I want them, or at least where I left them. If I do lose something, I usually notice right away, or soon enough that I can locate the item while I'm still in the area where I lost it. My things don't disappear permanently...well, they didn't, until yesterday.

I can't figure it out. It wasn't a hanging earring, the kind that falls out if you're not careful; on the contrary, it was a slightly larger than average stud with a backing that basically had to be wrenched off before I could remove it. I wasn't wearing headphones at any point, or a hat, or a scarf; I wasn't wearing anything that would take an earring with it when shedded. I didn't try on any clothes after putting the earrings on, and I certainly didn't try on any other earrings. No one gave me any strange looks as I made my way through the mall, trying to finish the Christmas shopping in one day. Even during a stop in the women's toilets before heading home, I noticed nothing amiss while fixing my hair, taking a good look at my head in the large mirror. A missing earring is something I would have noticed.

Yet somehow the earring disappeared. At the end of the night, I removed the earring from my right ear, and when I reached for the left...I didn't understand. I hadn't already removed it; had someone done it for me? It was one of those really strange moments, when you can remember the events of the day quite clearly, but still feel as if you're forgetting something, or everything. I searched the apartment with no luck. I knew I could just go buy the same pair the next day, and I knew people lose earrings all the time. Nevertheless, I felt old; slightly insane; suddenly transported to some surreality where ghosts and tiny elves creep up behind you and steal your left earring, not because they collect this sort of thing, but simply because they enjoy messing with you.

TRACK LISTING: Massive Attack, "Karmacoma"


SBP said...

I can't fall asleep, it's almost 1am and I have to get up in 6 hours. Boo.

Don't worry about your earring. If you stress something like that hard, I can only imagine your state when something really bad happens to you!

danny devito said...

you're crazy!

(but you might also be... a genius!)

Miss Imperial said...

No, no, I'm just (going) crazy. It's not the earring that's stressing me out...it's the onset of CRAZY.