Our internet has been really slow lately, so James called Time Warner a few days ago to upgrade our internet since the quality of our Netflix streaming is of the UTMOST importance around here. We were told that in order to use this new internet, we had to pick up a new modem at their customer service center. Since it's much closer to where I work than from where we live and where James works, I said allow me! I would love nothing more than to leave work to stand in a long line.
Or something like that.
But I left work yesterday mid-afternoon, mildly glad for the break, thinking I shouldn't be gone more than twenty minutes or so at the max.
I walked inside and took my place at the end of a very long line, but I didn't even have time to think about the line over the SCREAMING of CHILDREN. Two little boys were having a full tantrum on the floor. I know that poor mother was embarrassed, and I know that children are supposed to be a blessing, but I'm telling you, my eardrums, my headache, and my patience begged to differ.
After a thirty minute wait of wondering if I should just go back to work, I was finally called up. I told the man what I needed, and when he asked my phone number in order to verify my account, I went:
I. COMPLETELY. FORGOT.
I 100% forgot my own phone number, the one I've had for years that I've never forgotten before. I remembered the area code, but that was it. I couldn't have told you one number I thought might be in it. We stared into each others eyes as I mentally threw over desks and flung open the file cabinets of my brain looking for something to jog my memory. And here's the thing: I KNEW he was going to ask for my phone number! I knew it was coming, yet I was at as much of a loss as I would be if he had asked me to recite the Declaration of Independence in Swahili. I stuttered a series of "I...uhh..well..hold on a sec..." as I remembered that SOMEWHERE on my phone it has my phone number. Since I was already in a panicked, embarrassed frenzy, I hit all the wrong apps, tried to find myself in my contacts (AS IF I would call myself), and searched my settings. I was on the verge of texting James a !!!!!911 WHAT IS MY PHONE NUMBER DON'T ASK JUST HELP!!!! text when I blurted out the first phone number that popped into my head.
It needs to be stated (although I'm sure it's already abundantly clear) that I cannot be put on the spot and expected to function. I go completely blank anytime I'm caught off guard. One time, a man in a bakery asked me a question in French, and even though I understood him perfectly and knew how to respond, I was so flabbergasted that SOMEONE IN THE REAL WORLD IS SPEAKING FRENCH AND I CAN FINALLY USE MY SKILLZ that I responded in Spanish. So never put me on the spot and trust me to do what I'm supposed to do, because each and every time I will fail miserably.
This time was no different. As the phone number was coming out of my mouth, I knew it was all wrong. I had ZERO idea whose number it was or what corner of my brain I pulled it from, but it came flying out of my mouth before I could even process it. I repeated it several times, trying to convince myself that maybe it really was my phone number and I'm just losing it, but each time I said it I was even more sure it wasn't mine, even though I couldn't remember a shred of my own. As soon as I found my number on my phone, the man managed to pull my account up with my name, and we both read the correct phone number at the same time. He looked at me with amused pity and shook his head in disbelief, and I made him swear that he would never utter a word of this to anyone. Not that we know the same people, but I needed the comfort of hearing him say it.
To make the situation better, we didn't need a modem after all, which I suspected all along. So the entire experience had been for naught, and I also had to work an extra 45 minutes to make up for the extra long break.
However, I was not going to be able to rest until I discovered whose number I had spouted off. I knew it wasn't James' number (don't ask me for his number either. I just know that when I hit his name in my phone, he answers). I started to think maybe it was an old cell phone number, or an old friend's I used to have memorized, or maybe my mom's? I had no idea. I got back to work and scrolled through my family's numbers trying to find a match, when I finally found it. It was the number to my dad's office. THAT I HAVEN'T USED SINCE HIGH SCHOOL. I call his cell phone now, so I haven't called his office phone in ages, and I only had to dial it when I used my parents' house phone, in high school. I haven't been able to remember that number in a long time; I even tried to remember it a few months ago and couldn't. But apparently it's just my own number that I can't remember.