I went on an archaeological dig recently – through my wallet. I got out my toothbrush and dental pick and began sifting through the hardened layers of sediment. I discovered things I haven’t see in a very long time. And I discovered a little about myself.
Apparently, I like to stuff things into my wallet. I must be hoping they’ll magically – what? What am I hoping they’ll magically do? Disappear? File themselves into folders for easy searching? Find a mate and multiply? Whatever I was hoping would happen with all that stuff, it hasn’t. Well, maybe the multiply part. Where does all this junk come from anyway?
I have credit cards, debit cards, grocery store rewards cards, a book store rewards card, library cards, and gas station cards. I have six frequent diner cards – for restaurants I haven’t been to in years. I have pictures of my kids – from when they were babies. I’ve got receipts from McDonald’s from before Christmas; a receipt for a bottle of soda; a receipt for a handful of screws from the hardware store.
I didn’t find any pictures of dead presidents in my wallet. I’d like the presidents to take up permanent residency there, yet all the receipts seem to imply the presidents are wandering nomads, looking for a place to call home, but not content to dwell long in my back pocket. It’s too bad, too. With a little spring cleaning and a fresh coat of paint, my wallet would make a lovely home. They could have parties, invite their friends, maybe some of them could stay a while. Maybe big brother Ben would stop in and say hi.
But no, there’s too much crud. Too much dust, parched paper, and other archaeological detritus for men of their caliber. I guess I’ll have to be content digging through the evidence of the past.
This post originally appeared in the January 27, 2008, edition of the Greenhorn Valley View.