Thursday, November 17, 2005

in the name of justice and everything

i found myself in an interesting situation this morning. i arrived to work late, after a phone call from my mother held me up a bit, and sitting on my desk was a black shoulder bag with a note attached saying " divinemissk find out whose bag this is and return it." at first i was a little miffed, like, how the hell am i supposed to find out who this belongs too? but that's kindof how i feel when someone asks me to do something "why do i have to do it?" i'm a little whiny, what can i say?

when i got around to going through the bag, i realized that i got to do one of my favorite things, play detective. when i was a kid and i was told to ' go clean your room ' i would do so in a way that i would go through everything as if i were a stranger, say, a police detective looking for clues as to who the person who lived in this room was. ' hmmmm, assorted colored pencils and gold glitter, this girl obviously has a penchant for the arts and loves a little color in her life. ' its funny, i would have used a word in my head like penchant , but really had no idea what the definition was, and don't think i really know what it means nowadays...

anywho- i'd clean up my room and go through each item that i owned one by one and make up little stories about myself and what other people would think about me, judging by what i owned and how i kept my stuff. i liked to consider myself an anthropologist of sorts, although when i was ten years old, i probably didn't know what anthropology was. maybe i was just a romantic?

so, this morning i set about the task of playing detective. i imagined myself a character on 'law and order' looking for clues as to how to find this person and rightfully return their property (ensuring liberty and justice for us all). the first thing i pulled out of the bag was a date book. 'oh, this is going to be too easy.' i thought. but oh-ho-hooo, i turned to the personal information page and found it to be blank. a little more digging was necessary. there were several magazines in the bag and i pulled the first one out. allure , hmmmmm, probably a woman's bag (it was a non descript tote-like thing, a free giveaway from someone's company, so it could have belonged to either sex). the magazine gave off a strong smell of perfume, but there was no address stamp on the front. the next two magazines were the week and did have an address on the front, but they were to a man's office, an attorney who operated on 6th avenue. curious, i didn't think this bag belonged to this man, because although i would think it to be normal to find a few 'men's' magazine's in a woman's bag, i didn't think i would find a perfumey woman's magazine in a man's bag. and i knew that a gay man would carry a better bag! so, i began imagining scenarios like, this woman is getting a divorce and swiped a few magazines from her attorney's waiting room. or she's having an affair with this attorney, and is best friends with his wife and took a few magazines from his office, which she will casually leave around her apartment the next time her friend comes over because she's really a vindictive bitch at heart. you know, things along that line....

so, still thinking that this bag belonged to a woman, i turned back to the address book. i realized now that i would have to go through it a little further, in order to find a name or something. i was a little uncomfortable going through it because, really, i didn't want to find out anything that i didn't want to know about, and the thought of a stranger going through things gives me the shivers (its fine to imagine people going through my things, but in real life, i wouldn't want it to happen). so i turned the pages of the calendar- noticing entries for each day, all in black pen, in a barely legible handwriting. notes to self like ' call dee to confirm ', and ' check with florist .' appointments for the dentist, and reminders of the bergdorf's trunk sale. there were business cards stuffed in pockets haphazardly, magazine clippings; one was on a new knitting kit sold on lafayette street that apparently julia roberts just loves. another was for a sale at ann taylor loft, and another was a recipe for key lime pie. mmmmmmmm, pie! i was hoping to find a receipt or something with a name on it and eventually i did, and the last name was the same as the last name on the magazines, so i figured it was the wife of the lawyer. i then found a print out of an email, with an email address. so i figured i could just email the woman and tell her i had her bag. but that would be too easy! what if she didn't check her email everyday? no, i would have to keep looking. in the name of justice and everything.

i flipped to the front of the address book, and went through the pockets there. a few business cards for kitchen remodeling places (oooooh we had something in common!), some paint chips (pale pink and coral pink- the coral was a little too orange-y for my taste), an old candy wrapper, and then bingo! a blank check . with the name of the lawyer, the name of his wife and their address on east 84th street. i was a little disappointed i didn't have to do any more detective work, but satisfied that the bag would find it's owner again.

i went to and typed in their name and address and found both his work number and their home number. i called and left a message at their home, " ummm hi, my name is divinemissk, and i work at so and so and i found your bag on my desk this morning, i think my boss left it there, so, yeah, anyway, i have it here and this is my phone number and the address where you can come pick it up. i'll have it locked up by my desk, so you can stop by anytime ."

i hung up with the satisfaction of a job well done. but i knew my job wasn't over, what if she works all day and doesn't get the message until later this evening? would justice truly prevail? or would i just have to call the husband at work and let him know that his wife's bag was safe in my hands?

, i would have to call him at work. i didn't want to bother him exactly, so i decided to leave a message with his assistant or whoever answered the phone. i went through the same schpiel, and as i was hanging up, i realized that by the man's reaction on the other line, it was probably the husband himself and not some young, hot, paralegal, who was working his way through law school at night, while toiling away at the mister's office during the day.

i received a phone call a few minutes ago and it was the wife, asking for divinemissk and then calling me her hero. "well, it wasn't really me , it was my boss really, i just did the detective work."

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