At this very moment, there is something in my apartment. I do not what this thing is or where it is at. It could be anything, or at least anything small enough to hide inside a two-bedroom in South Nashville.
I must know what it is.
In less than a week, it will be my birthday. As is customary, there are certain expectations that I have when my birthday rolls around. I want cake and some sort of deal, but mostly I expect to be given stuff, things, doohickeys. I want gifts. It was in the middle of dinner when my wife let the cat out of the bag.
“I bought your birthday present today,” she said, raising her eyes from her salmon. She said it nonchalantly as if this were to garner no reaction from me. Naturally, it did get a reaction and I had a couple of questions.
“What is it?” Not surprisingly, she did not tell me. In the five years that we have been married, I have asked her this every single birthday, Christmas, anniversary, or any other situation involving possible gifts. She has never answered this question, but it never hurts to try.
“Okay,” I said, “Where is it?” Once again, complete silence. I would assume that this was because she thought I would go look for the gift if she answered the question. It’s insulting to know she thought that little of me. I mean, she was right, but that is beside the point.
Now I am here in my house, knowing that some mystery object is hidden in some mystery place. Worst is that this mystery object was purchased specifically for me. I have sat here, trying desperately to remember every single thing I have mentioned wanting in the past month. There was the Washburn parlor guitar, but that is a bit outside of our price range. I would assume that means that the Porsche 911 Carrera S Cabriolet is not the gift. Besides, I think I would notice that hidden in the apartment somewhere.
I glanced around, hoping for a clue, but nothing. Nothing under the bed, nothing in the closet, nothing behind the couch. I even checked in the cabinet over the stove that we never use, but there was nothing anywhere. For a second, I thought that maybe this was a trick. Maybe there really was no gift to be found and it was just a joke. Of course, that is more of a lie than a joke. That is really not a move she usually defaults to.
I guess I could just wait six days. Then she would hand that gift right over to me. I would not have to hunt for it. That, though, is for quitters and I am no quitter. I will hunt until I find that present, until the mystery has been solved. There are only a finite amount of places this gift could be, so I should eventually find it.
Of course, if I do, she might be disappointed. I do not want to disappoint my wife. The question is, which do I want more: to not disappoint my wife or to have the gifts? It is quite the conundrum.
I guess she should never have told me she bought it. She brought this on herself.