We went to dinner last night on campus at Liberty University because my awesome wife is part-time staff and there was an employee appreciation event. It was something fin and different to do for dinner. Plus, the food was free for employees and their families, so FREE FOOD.
As the kids are getting situated, my wife notices a USB stick / thumb drive (what are these ACTUALLY called these days?) falling to the floor. She picked it up, assuming that it likely belonged to one of the hundreds of LU students with computer bags surrounding us. However, I noticed it and saw that it is the exact same style of the one that I use to save all of my writing to. I have used it for about 5 years now, saving fragment of stories, outlines, and new ideas. There are easily 70-75 ideas on that drive and, at last count, the beginnings of 4 novels that I hope to one day finish…not to mention 2 novels that are just about done.
The thumb drive was even faded in some of the same spots as my writing disk. But there was no way it was mine…why would my thumb drive be on the floor in an LU dining hall?
So we asked the student behind us if she dropped it. She eyed it, said “I do have one like that,” and sort of reluctantly takes it. You could tell that she recognized it but, like me, was confused as to why it would be on the floor of the dining hall.
We started eating and after a while, I figured it is maybe more than a coincidence…it looks EXACTLY like mine, down to the last detail. But there is NO REASON it should be on an LU dining hall floor. I silently obsess over this for the next half an hour. What if I cause a stink and ask for it back, only to get home and find the poor girl’s term papers and assignments on it? Still, because my wife is AWESOME, she decides to leave her name and number with the student JUST IN CASE the student finds that it is not her USB but, in fact, is filled with about 5 years of a horror writer’s stories and purged nightmares.
The student decides maybe it’s not hers after all and hands it over. She does so with the attitude of “I really don’t want to hear your explanation; just take it. I’m trying to eat.”
So we take it from her and then head home When we get back, I put the USB in our computer.
Yep…it was mine.
I have no idea how it got to our dinner. Did one of the kids picks it up? Probably not, as the 2 year old had no pockets on her pants and the older two know not to mess with anything around my computer. Did I maybe put it in the pouch of my hoodie in a hurry to leave the house, not even thinking about it? Maybe. I am always very particular about where my disks go, but maybe I slipped up this one time. I certain;y have no recollection of pocketing it that afternoon.
Either way…HUGE bullet dodged. If I did indeed place it in my pocket, it could have fallen out anywhere. And if that had happened, I’d be in the process of being admitted into a psych ward today.
The lesson out of this? Well, I’ll be spending the next several days backing up ALL of my files from the last 5 years of writing now. Still sweating over this.