But “lost” is probably a little strong. I’m 95% sure that the ring is somewhere in the house. I noticed it missing in the middle of last week, but I was sick and sure that it would turn up once I cleaned the house on the weekend. Well. I have overcome my illness and I have also cleaned the house, but I have not found my ring.
“You should have put a Tile on it,” Madison said when she became aware of the situation. I have Tiles on my car keys and the keys to the Highlander, but obviously, it would not work so well on a wedding ring.
“And this is why, Philip!” Lynnette said when I confessed to her that I have not seen or heard tell of my wedding ring for a few days. I would like to complete her sentence for you, just in case you are unaware of the ending and/or don’t have a wife. “And this is why, Philip, you put things where they belong.” Now, she’s not wrong – as evidenced by the fact that I am not privy to the location of my wedding ring – but she sounds a lot like my mom which makes “I told you so” about a billion times more hurtful and irritating than it already is on its own.
That’s the the thing, though. I do put my ring where it belongs, the rub is that there are multiple places in the house where it belongs when it’s not on my finger. It can be on the counter near the kitchen sink (when I take it off to do the dishes), on the island (when I take it off to do the dishes or cook), on my computer desk (when I’m about to shower but then lose track of time looking up AJ Styles’ New Japan matches), on the sink in the bathroom (when I’m about to shower for real), or on the ledge above the shower, next to the window (when I’m already showering but have forgotten to take off my ring). Also, it may be placed on Lynnette’s dresser in the bedroom or my dresser in the bedroom. What usually happens when I misplace my ring is I just go to all of these places one-by-one until I find it. I have always found it. Until now.
The perpetually white skin under my ring has already started to darken and blend in with the rest of the skin on my hand. The flesh that had been compressed by the cold metal has started to rise like bread baking in the oven. If I feel around it with the fingers of my other hand, I can feel the impression of the ring. It is as if an invisible ring rests upon my finger. The good news, though, is the fact that I don’t feel any less married. It’s exactly like a birthday. You don’t feel a year older when you wake up, you know? When I remarked about the strength of our marriage regardless of the status of my ring, Lynnette scoffed. “Now all the girls won’t know that you’re married. It’s open season on Phil,” she said. First of all, I laughed. Lynnette has a way of saying these absurd things that get me. Second, I’m a 36-year old man whose hobbies are playing Pokemon and watching professional wrestling – in that order. I need to lose the equivalent of a 5th grader to get near my ideal weight. I know all of this, but Lynnette knows it, too. And that’s when I realize she’s being sarcastic and man, that stings.