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October 20, 2004


You know what annoys me more than anything else? Is it religious genocide? Is it world hunger? Is it the AIDS epidemic? No. It's looking for something and not being able to find it.

It happens once a month or so. I'll need something, and it's not immediately at hand, so I'll look on my desk (because there are a lot of things on my desk, some of them even work-related), and not find it. Then I'll look in various drawers, and not find it. My ire increasing I'll begin stalking around various rooms, opening cupboards, lifting magazines and cushions, and not find it. With every step I take on this frustrating quest my anger level will rise until I'm literally shaking with fury over whichever godforesaken item I'm seeking. I'll start cursing at myself, the location I'm searching, family members, and, eventually, innocent passers-by until I'm almost foaming at the mouth. If things go on long enough I will cease to care what damage I might cause in my search. I'll pick up boxes of fine china and shake them in case I recognize the distinctive sound of that particular item (say, a USB cable or a pencil eraser) within. I'll throw things (usually other peoples' things, it must be admitted) on the floor. I'll treat with reckless disregard anything standing between me and that pack of batteries that I know is around here somewhere. I will, irrationally, return to places I've already devastated, just in case I missed it the first time around. This will only serve to increase my anger when the gravy boat isn't in fact there, because I knew already that it wasn't and just wasted yet another few minutes and, quite possibly, broke something else looking for it.

Things get worse once I've ransacked all the most likely locations and have to move on to more obscure locales. I'll go up to the bedrooms looking for a shovel. I'll go to the shed to look for that floppy disc. This makes no sense, but I do it anyway, because by this point my apoplexy has reached critical level. If you attached an anger-o-meter to me at that point, an alarm would shriek and it would begin to emit smoke. At this juncture I am, more or less, a bull at Pamplona, charging around in stupid wild-eyed rage with no idea where I'm going, knowing only that somewhere, somewhere, for fuck sake is that elusive Christmas tree stand I saw only like a month ago goddamnit while I was looking for something else, infuriated into near brain death by everything and anything in my path.

Then I'll lose my mind completely. My face will become a contorted picture of purple insanity, and I'll start rifling through places not even physically able to hide whatever I'm looking for: I'll look for my bike helmet in an empty cookie tin, or lift up bedcovers in case that spare DVD player is underneath. I'll stomp around, twitching and jerking like the alien in Men in Black, hovering dangerously on the brink of suffering a fatal aneurism. I'll check in the bath, in the toilet cistern, in the liquor cabinet (I once discovered the iron in there after a mere 55 minutes of looking in more logical places. Yes, the clothes iron. In the liquor cabinet. That was not a happy day).

Eventually my brain will, by some sort of clever self-preservation reflex, recognize that I'm just seconds away from becoming irreperably and homicidally deranged, and will leave me suddenly bereft of the frantic energy that has seized me for the last hour. I will fall to the floor with a sudden gasp, curl myself into the foetal position and commence gentle sobbing. This will last anywhere from five to fifteen minutes, after which I will rise, drained and useless, and stagger to the nearest chair, where I will sit for an indeterminate amount of time until a lightning bolt of inspiration strikes me. It's in the cupboard under the stairs in the basement! That's where it's always been! And I'll rush down to look. And it won't be there. And then I'll shoot myself in the head, live on national television, as a warning to anyone considering buying a house with more than one room.

Today I have been looking for my video camera, which I need to sell in order to raise money for a digital camera, which I need to buy to replace my existing digital camera, which my eldest step-daughter and my dog conspired together to break. I will find it. No, I will. It's in a black and red case, and it's either in the office or the basement. Or possibly upstairs. Or it might be in one of the composters in the back yard. I haven't looked in those yet, but I think I will right now. I'll keep you posted.

Update: I found the packaging it originally came in, but not the actual camera. It was underneath a bedsheet in a box underneath two other boxes at the far side of a three-deep stack of boxes in the basement. Naturally.

Update 2: OMG I found it. It was in a box next to the box with the packaging in it, along with other things I've not even seen in about three years. I should've looked there to begin with. I'm such a fool. Now I just need to find the power adapter...

Update 3: I found the power adapter too. In a different box in a different room on a different level of the house. I think it might be time to revisit our strategy of keeping things in boxes on top of other boxes. Well, that wasn't so bad. It only took four hours.


At October 20, 2004 at 7:24 p.m. , Blogger darcey said...

dude - you need google desktop!

At October 20, 2004 at 8:42 p.m. , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Only you could go on for 6 paragraphs describing anger.
Furthermore, that was very Mil Millington of you.

At October 21, 2004 at 9:16 a.m. , Blogger Ross Thomas said...

To help me search!!

(I only just got it, a day later.)

At October 21, 2004 at 10:46 a.m. , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why would you ever be lookng for a floppy disc? Man, you need a new computer.

At October 21, 2004 at 11:02 a.m. , Blogger Ross Thomas said...

Or I could just take the floppy drive out of this one. That would cut down on the things I need to look for! I like the way you think, Anonymous.


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