Sunday, March 30, 2014

The Prodigal Jacket

Last night, I arrived at the bar wearing a pretty snazzy jacket. Black pleather and fabric sleeves with an off-center zipper, it was getting compliments from everyone who saw it. But it was also getting hot. Pleather jackets are not ideal for dancing in. So I hung my jacket on the hook beside the booth, tucking it behind the trash can. Then I thought better of keeping it so close to a trash can amidst a crowd of people who are probably not at their most graceful. So I laid it down on the booth seat and got back to dancing.

I don't know how it happened, because I never traveled more than an arm's length from the table, but when I next looked at the seat, my jacket was gone.

Instantaneous panic!

I peered under the table; I checked the other seat; I ran my hands over the cushion, as if maybe my jacket had simply turned invisible. I checked the hook where I'd originally hung it. Nothing. Someone had stolen it!

I made my way out of the bar, followed by my friends. The night had been drawing to a close anyway, and my sartorial tragedy was just the last nail in the coffin. While my boyfriend went back inside to seek out what I knew was long gone, I stood on the curb weeping openly. At this point, I would like to acknowledge my opportunity to reference a song lyric by stating that the clothes I wasn't wearing (girl) were causing public scenes.

My boyfriend came out with another coat, which clearly wasn't mine, but he said he'd found it on the floor, and we were all too flustered to go back in and look for that jacket's owner, so I wore it to the car. My friends tried to comfort me by telling how great I looked in the new coat, but it was a poor second to my missing jacket, which I was elevating in my mind every moment to a right astronomic status. I had gotten it for only 10 dollars, and everyone loved it. Where would I ever find another jacket that cool for 10 dollars, not to mention it was my only black jacket and you can't just not have a black jacket! It was probably the greatest jacket the world had ever known, and now it would be mine no more.

But there was still hope. In all the hubbub, my boyfriend had forgotten to close his tab and had left his credit card there. So we had to go back today. Besides, I could not in good conscience keep the jacket he had stolen for me, so I wanted to return that to the lost and found. Maybe even, if miracles really do happen, I would find my own coat there.
The bartender directed us to a closet where all the lost coats were unceremoniously stored in a large garbage bin. We examined one jacket after another. Oddly, they were almost all black leather jackets, but they were all completely inferior to mine—which was not there. But the bartender had said one more thing before she left us. "There's another black leather jacket upstairs."

I made my way up there with a sense of resignation, and saw, across the room, a black shape draped over the back of a booth. I approached. I saw glossy black pleather and matte fabric. I picked it up. I squealed and jumped up and down. It was my jacket! My wonderful, beautiful, trendy, doozy-of-a-bargain jacket!

I still can't figure out how it made its way up to the second floor, though I wonder if some game of musical jackets was going on, and some other well meaning boyfriend had scooped it up for his lady love, only to be told that it was not the right one.

But then again, this jacket is not just any jacket. It's the greatest jacket the world has ever known. With credentials like that, I wouldn't be at all surprised if it had somehow managed to teleport upstairs all by itself.


Ray Hoy said...

Glad you got your wonderful jacket back. I'm also glad that for once you made a song reference that I actually recognized. And a song the old band used to play at that.

Since I'm using the decrepit laptop I once described to you, I'm SURE you noticed I used a "z". 122 to you and a thank you too.