Finding Nothing, Writer’s Workshop Assignment

My apologies for not being diligent and posting things.  Life happens and I needed to head to Canada to deal with parental health issues.  My sisters and I faced some new realities, some which need explanations but I am not ready to go there yet.  Facing my mother’s future was a reminder that I am right behind her.  On a lighter note, I am sharing another one of my writing assignments from my course at Gotham’s Writing Workshop.  Enjoy,

In this assignment, we were supposed to right about an obsession. Either exaggerate the obsession or write about it in exaggerated terms. 

I grew up with 7 people ( 4 of which were sisters) in a tiny house and was driven crazy by never being able to find anything I had left somewhere!  That inability to find something quickly in my home today, with just three of us, continues to drive me to drink!  I make a point of having a “spot” for just about everything.  This way, when I need that thing, I go to that ‘spot” and fifty percent of the time, it’s not there.  I have tried  teaching my tribe the do’s and don’ts of touching, and worse, moving  my things, but like my sisters, no one seems to pay any attention to what I have to say or respect my things in there spot.  With my sisters, it was my clothes. Unlike some of them, I had a part time job and afforded myself some cool things.  If I didn’t take those things to bed with me, I could find them on some other body in school that day.  Not only would they move my things, they moved them on their bodies to collect that day’s dose of perspiration.   I don’t need or want any additional adornments.  Just my things, just the way I left them, where I left them.

Every once in awhile, more often than I care to recall, I go to find something, say a necklace.  I get to the spot and the spot is empty.  Who else is wearing my jewelry?  Not my teenage daughter who considers most of my jewels precious for a generation or two ahead of hers.  Not my husband ( unlike his ex-wife’s love interest following  divorce who had her looking for lost handbags only to find them draped over his shoulder while shopping at the mall) he’s just not into my pieces.  In an attempt to secure my jewelry, I hide things in different spots.   Like my “depression raised parents” who hid food and canned goods in the basement, I guess this is a reaction from having my home robbed early in life.   God forbid that a robber would find a spot; he wouldn’t know to look for other spots where more things are hidden.  I do such a good job of hiding things that even I, sometimes don’t know where things are and don’t have access to those special spots.  Writing it down would only provide the robbers with a house-map of my “spot” locations so I go on living, with most pieces MIA.  I hope that one day, before I sell this house, flashlight in hand, I will uncover all of the spots and be “jewelry whole” once again.  If not, the next buyer will have purchased more than they bargained for.


  1. Anne Smithson says:

    You have made me feel much better about my self as I too have the same problem that seems to be worsening by the week. I was worried it was early onset Alzhiemers but now see it is just a symptom of a club with a growing membership. Could it be that multitasking
    has just become too much for minds this age group????

  2. Francine, this is again, very entertaining for me!!! I find my husband constanly accuses me of losing his things, but I assure him, I can’t keep track of mine own stuff, why would I attempt to move his! I too hide things,to keep them safe???? Only to discover I have forgotten where I put them. Nowadays, I have so much stuff accumulated everywhere, it is just easier to keep it out in plain sight .So now I am obsessing about my clutter, can we ever win???

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