July 21, 2009

and if a ten ton truck


Unlike most code-word questions I ask, I must admit that yesterday's category came saddled with motives that were, frankly, ulterior. You see, I have lost my wedding ring - it is gone, gone, gone, and although it's been about two months, I can't think about it without plunging into a micro-depression.

It was the perfect ring for me. I'd always liked Lindsay's wedding ring, something he found in Italy - a big, fat restored wedding band from the actual Roman Empire - and wanted something like it. Tessa conjured perfection with a ring that looked like three fused together: the outer bands were gold, the middle platinum, while still remaining masculine and un-showy.

When I took a writing sabbatical for a few days in May, I remember having the ring as I entered the motel room, and then never seeing it again. As astronomical luck would have it, that particular motel room was scheduled for renovation the next day (after not having been touched for 30+ years), so when I went back, the entire place had been gutted, and workers were putting up new drywall.

Even before that, I knew... I knew the second I hadn't seen it, that it was definitively gone. Not "oh I'll find it eventually like I always do" gone, but GONE. It has an inscription inside with private meaning to my wife and me, and I don't know how it could ever be replicated.

I feel naked without it. The Buddhists teach that all material goods are unimportant, and I try not to get hung up on imbuing too much meaning into a thing, and accepting the impermanence of the world, but FUCK. I still have a bunch of Mad Magazines from 1979. Can I trade them in for my wedding ring?

holding Lucy during her first rainstorm on the terrace in Brooklyn, May 2005

Posted by Ian Williams at July 21, 2009 11:53 PM
Posted by: LFMD at July 22, 2009 5:26 AM

That sucks. Knowing how sentimental you are about things, I am really sorry to hear about the ring. Makes me want to travel over to that motel and help you tear the place up until you find it!

Posted by: Anne at July 22, 2009 6:14 AM

That's very sad. Sometimes a ring is *not* just a ring. So sorry, Ian.

Posted by: Bozoette Mary at July 22, 2009 6:25 AM

Oh, that sucks, Ian. My ring is just a plain, thin gold band, but I would be heartsick if I lost it.

Posted by: Deb at July 22, 2009 6:26 AM

I'm sorry, Ian. Steve lost his wedding ring on our honeymoon, when the cold water of the Mediterranean shrunk his finger and it slipped off into the wat'ry abyss. It sucks that the ring he wears isn't the one I put on his finger at our wedding (and obviously it would have been even worse if he'd been wearing it for 7 years) but the minute you get a new one you'll start to feel better and get attached to that ring. I bet you of all people can make a romantic event of its initiation, too!

Posted by: Julie Hunter at July 22, 2009 7:10 AM

I sometimes wonder if the less thought one puts into a wedding band, the more likely it will stay on one's finger for life. Mine was thirty bucks and here it sits, while two diamond rings, a string of pearls and countless earrings are lost. Everyone I know with a custom band has lost his/hers so I think you're now part of a well attended grief group.

Women are very accustomed from an early age to losing sentimental jewelry and it is heartbreaking. I sympathize and can only offer that from my experience the sharp pain of losing this meaningful band will eventually fade but you'll always miss it. Get yourself another band at ShopKo and you'll probably never lose it or love it near as much.

Posted by: josie at July 22, 2009 7:37 AM

Sorry, Ian. That stinks. Suffice it to say, I kinda know how you feel.

Posted by: josie at July 22, 2009 7:43 AM

Oh - and don't try to have it replicated. It will NEVER be the same. Get a totally new one.

Posted by: Salem at July 22, 2009 8:26 AM

Ah, It's time to renew those vows!
Where do we all show up? Aren't we the team that creates new memories every day?

Hey, I've got two rings for you to chose from. Do you prefer white gold, or lovely David Yurman in sterling and yellow gold. I can't seem to lose these rings, it's the women that keep vanishing.

Posted by: Sharon at July 22, 2009 8:36 AM

Ian - Same thing happened to me. Somehow on Feb. 27, both my engagement ring and wedding ring managed to slip off my finger. Just a couple of years ago, my husband had taken my original engagement ring diamond and worked with a local jeweler to have it reset in a beautiful new setting with a matching wedding ring. So, it was the best of the old and the new. I was heartsick when it disappeared. Turned the house upside down, retraced my steps, posted on local lost & founds. Still to this day don't know what in the world happened. As you can imagine, this was a lot of fun to explain to the insurance company. I just now am in the process of getting a new ring set done. It won't be nearly as romantic as Charles suprising me with his design, but I'll have something nice when we're done. I think I had to go through a mini-grieving process -- which sounds totally melodramatic, but was my experience.I can't even imagine what it must be like to lose many precious things through a fire or flood. Finally, my husband had to give me the snap out of it speech. It's just a material object and our relationship is about more than just a ring. But, in the words of Bill - I feel your pain.

Posted by: Cris at July 22, 2009 8:37 AM

Well I feel slightly less depressed knowing I'm in good company, at least.

As for Josie's suggestion, I also thought that the best way to remedy the situation was to get completely new rings. After all, we started wearing these relatively early in the relationship, so maybe new rings would better reflect where we are now. Sounds great, right? My other half didn't quite see it the same way. So I guess I have to track down the artist and see if he can make a replica.

Posted by: wottop at July 22, 2009 8:38 AM

Mine is now shaped like an egg. It is because I never remove it for more than 10 seconds.

Hate that you lost it. I do like the idea of a ceremony for the replacement. Still, better the ring than the wife.

Posted by: Bud at July 22, 2009 8:47 AM

My dad lost his wedding ring (in a truck stop restroom). A week or so later, he took me to see his mother (my grandmother) and he poured out his heart to her about losing the ring.

She asked him which was the real treasure: the ring or his marriage. Of course, he said it was his marriage. "Thus endeth the pity party," said my grandmother.

Give Tessa a hug today!

Posted by: CM at July 22, 2009 8:58 AM

It's a beautiful ring. Why not write an essay about this for the newspaper that covers whatever town the motel is in (LA?) Maybe someone will find the ring among the construction and take pity and give it back to you.

Posted by: Kjf at July 22, 2009 10:55 AM

I moved about 9 months ago and the mover stole my wedding ring out of a drawer (the ring didn't fit anymore and I planned on getting it resized). I was as upset as you were and even though we know who took it I never got it back. It wasn't very valuable and the dumb mover skipped over much more valuable items. My husband has the same ring so he went to a jeweler and had another one made with the same inscription as the original - apparently the original inscription was hand done so they had to find someone to replicate it. He surprised me with the replacement on my birthday a few weeks ago and although I know it's not the ring from 1975 it sure does look the same. And the fact that my husband went through all the trouble makes it special in a new way.

Posted by: tbruns at July 22, 2009 12:47 PM

I went to see Phantom Menace at the movies and took my ring off, because my fingers were swelling from eating the popcorn and forgot it was on my lap. When I got up I heard it hit the ground never to be seen again. I told my mom about it after I told my wife and she gave me my dads ring "He won't care he never wears it" Still have it after 14 years of marriage...I think it's pretty cool

Posted by: Rebecca at July 22, 2009 3:07 PM

So sorry about the ring Ian.

Posted by: Alan at July 22, 2009 6:53 PM

I lost my ring when we had been married for about five year. Who knew I was tiny knuckled but it was flying off all the time. It was lost on a soccer field when I was coaching - trampled and buried. I still feel it there 12 years later, itchy. I rub at it with my thumb like some ghost limb halo.

Posted by: Sean at July 23, 2009 6:39 AM

That's what you get for having those long piano fingers. These tuba-thumbs I have at the end of my hands make it impossible for me to take the ring off.

Salem... I hope it's okay, but that totally cracked me up. When I was getting married the second time, I asked my ex if I could have the ring back, because it felt weird to have two wedding rings out there. She asked me to buy it off her.

I felt okay letting that one go.

Posted by: Randy at July 26, 2009 2:07 PM

Dude, Sorry you lost your ring. I lost mine on the week after my wedding and we couldn't afford to replace it. My wife's coworker had just gotten divorced and had one that she said we could have. Despite the potential stigma, the thing fit better than the one I lost and I've been wearing it for the last 16 years. I'd say the "curse" is broken now as we're still married with 4 kids, the dog, the hamster and loving life.

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