Saturday, April 13, 2013

The Long Play

Union Jack British Flag |  Mug
Chuck had a Mug. A Mug like the one above. Chuck cared for his mug - meticulously - on two US Navy Aircraft cruises on the USS Saratoga and the USS Midway. Chuck washed it. Chuck hid it. Chuck made sure no one else touched it or brought harm upon it.

Of course his care for the mug only brought more attention to the mug. Everyone around Chuck knew that Chuck loved and cared for the mug and therefore taunted Chuck about the mug. They wanted to bring harm to the mug. The locked the mug to a bulkhead. They stole the mug. They ridiculed Chuck for the mug.

Chuck's time on Aircraft Carriers came to an end and the Mug was a survivor. Chuck moved to Tennessee. The Mug moved too.

On day while Chuck was getting ready for work he left the Mug on the roof of his car. You might guess what happened next. It wasn't pretty. The mug was no more. A sad end to the veteran of two cruises.

I knew of the mug. It was I that locked the mug to the bulkhead.

A few years later whilst in a gift shop in (did you see what I did there? I used whilst in a story about a UK flag). I found a replica of the mug and I bought two.

I brought harm to one. Great harm. I crushed it with a hammer in a gallon zip lock bag.

I mailed the results to Chuck. No, I did not want insurance.

This made Chuck unhappy. But it made me laugh. Ah ha ha ha ha I said to myself.

Time moved on. Life happened. Marriages. Children. Jobs.

I lost track of Chuck. Many of us did. He had become a ghost. He moved from Tennessee and despite modern tools like Google and Facebook, none could find Chuck. I would look for Chuck when I was at my computer with nothing else to do. (See Honey: All those times you asked "What the heck are you doing?" This is what I was doing - looking for Chuck).

Then one day 30 years later, out of the blue,  I recalled Chuck's middle name. It was unique, I recalled. I typed that into Google.

Bingo. Details. Details about Chuck that I knew.

Now what to do? I had a possible address. It was not proof. How do I prove this was Chuck?

Ah ha I said. I shall make amends for the great evil I did 30 years before.

I shall replace the mug. After all, I had the power of Cafepress and Paypal.

This week Chuck received the Mug and all was right again.

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