Wednesday, March 26, 2008

The Old Age Rag

It started this afternoon. SWMBO was taking a nap and I was paying a handful of bills. I had a couple of life insurance payments due. (Sidebar: I first got these two policies, relatively small ones, when I was about 18. My dad bought them for me because he thought it was important for me to have them. I've been paying on them for . . oh, man, almost 50 years now. As I was writing another check, I thought of how much money the company had received from me over the years and of how little my heirs are going to get out of it. But . . that's another story.)

Anyway, I was paying my bills chronologically according to when they were due. When I wrote out the check for the second insurance payment and put it in an envelope, I suddenly realized I couldn't find the envelope and payment for the first payment. I began looking all over. I went through a large trash basket several times. I went through my receipts file at least 4 or 5 times. Finally, SWMBO woke up and came in and I said "I have a mystery for you to solve."

So she went through the trash basket. I went through the receipts file again. I looked under my computer monitor, under the CPU, under my printer, under my bed, all around the desk on the floor. I had previously . . . because I was also doing my weekly chore of cleaning out the cat pans and refilling them . . . been through the entire house and garage, tracing my tracks. I even went out into the back yard and took a look around. I went out to the mailbox to see if I had taken the envelope out there.


Somewhere late in here I shouted "There's another one missing." The check for the company who picks up our trash also is missing. This caused yet another search of, now, all the old familiar places.

SWMBO finally gave up and said "Just write another couple of checks, put them in an envelope and mail them."

"But", I said, "what if I end up paying them twice?"

"You won't", she said, "the 'lost' ones will eventually turn up."

After a few more rounds of the house, I succumbed to this logic. I was in the closet, getting a couple of envelopes out and looking once again in the drawer where I keep the stamps . . thinking that I might have laid the envelopes in there . . when it came to me.

I had written these two checks out earlier this morning and mailed them.

Oh, shit.

I have a birthday coming up in less than a month.

And . . . this is a symptom of old age.