My 10-year-old daughter Olivia is going to a new school this year, which requires her to get up an hour earlier than usual and take the train to Center City Philadelphia. She’s very bright, musically-gifted, cheerful, extroverted, and beautiful. In sum, she is exactly like her mother and doesn’t resemble me in any way. Except one: she would forget her head if it wasn’t attached to her neck.
On Tuesday morning, we got a tearful phone call from her because she had left her violin on the train. SEPTA (the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority) does not have a particularly stellar reputation when it comes to customer service (or anything else, for that matter), but they do actually have a Lost & Found Department. By some small miracle, the violin ended up there undamaged. As I left the house to retrieve the wayward instrument — grumbling to myself that I was going to chain the violin to Olivia’s wrist — I stepped over a UPS package that had just been delivered, containing the bag of violin music that Olivia had left at her grandparents over the weekend. The week before, while we were at Back-to-School night at her school, she sent me a text asking if I could grab the Science folder she had left in her locker. The next day she forgot to go to choir during lunch. The week before she left her ID in her locker (or thought she did; it was later found under a pile of clothes on the floor of her room), her train pass in her coat (which she had left at school), and her water bottle on her desk. That she has not lost her glasses yet is nothing short of amazing.
Sadly, I am not much better. I am notorious for losing my wallet, keys, watch, pens, headphones, iPhone dongles, kids — pretty much anything that isn’t attached to my body. I lost so many watches in high school, my parents refused to buy me any more. At the Alliance conference in Grapevine, TX, I lost (and found) my briefcase three different times in one day. Coming home from a meeting in Alexandria, VA, I got on a train going in the wrong direction. A month later, I bought a train ticket for a return trip from NYC for the wrong day. I’m pathetic (note from Scott: can’t argue with that one).
Which brings us to the main point of today’s post: CMEpalooza Fall is on Wednesday, October 18, starting at 10 AM ET. This is your official reminder. Put it in your calendar. Set an alert. Write it on your hand in pen. Tell your spouse to remind you. Do whatever it is you need to do to remember. I was going to have Scott send me a telegram the day before as my reminder, but then he wrote a blog post that initially listed the wrong day for CMEpalooza (I fixed it before you saw it) and now I don’t trust him. Maybe I’ll have Olivia remind me instead. I hope you all are free on October 20th…