One day, the receptionist in my building (I'll call her Jane) had someone point out that she was missing an earring. While these earrings weren't expensive, Jane liked the colors, and wore them frequently. She checked all around her desk, in her clothing, on the floor, and even in the trash -- but to no avail. The missing earring remained AWOL. Two days later, one of the attorneys in the building asked Jane if she'd recently lost an earring, and she acknowledged that she had. It turns out that Jane had been putting together a fed-ex package for the attorney, which was then mailed to the court. The court had called the attorney to report that the package they'd received included an earring... Jane's earring. A short time later, Jane and the missing earring were happily reunited. Alas, the reunion and happiness were short lived, as that same earring went AWOL again a short time later, and remains missing, to this day.
But the sharing of this story led to a discussion of how long is the appropriate length of time to keep the earring left behind, when the other one goes astray.
Come on now, ladies (and perhaps some men?).... admit it, you've all kept earrings left behind, long after there was any hope of the missing one returning home.
It occurred to me that there's an easy solution to this... oh sure, I get it, the easy solution is to throw away the earring you have left. But is that really fair? That poor earring has already been abandoned by its soulmate, or perhaps I should say lobemate... and now you're going to throw it in the trash? So perhaps instead of calling this the easy solution, I should call this the better solution.
What we should do is... no, wait, let me lay the groundwork first.
I have some socks. These aren't leftover socks, suffering a similar fate to the left-behind earrings, these are socks that were purchased in a 3-pack. Nope, not 3 pairs, but 3 socks. My favorite pair - oops, grouping - is my pink set. My pink set consists of one sock that's solid bright pink, one sock that is dark pink with bright pink polka dots, and one sock is bright pink with dark pink stripes. There is no pair, just a grouping. And those three socks are very happy, they all get along well with each other, and none of them has ever indicated the slightest desire to go on a clothes dryer adventure. They happily take turns as to who gets to go out in public.
With that in mind, I think it is time that we move beyond the notion of a pair of earrings, and expand into the world of earring groupings. There's no reason I shouldn't be able to wear my silver star earring in one ear, and
either my blue plaid star earring -
Whew. I feel really good, having come to this realization. I think I'll have a cup of tea -- after checking to make sure I haven't dropped an earring into the bottom.