Wednesday, April 2, 2008

In search of lost objects

Words of wisdom, sort of:

There are no missing objects. Only unsystematic searchers.
Findologist Professor Solomon has made his How to Find Lost Objects available as a free .pdf.

I've heard of Professor Solomon's 18-inch rule (objects "tend to travel no more than eighteen inches from their original location") and have found it genuinely useful when looking for things like keys, Moleskines, pens, and wallets.

How to Find Lost Objects (.pdf, 5.2 MB) (via Quo Vadis Blog)

comments: 3

Lee said...

Unfortunately, the 18-inch rule does not work with my spectacles - perhaps because I can't read the ruler without them?

The worst scenario was once finding them chopped to bits by the lawnmower in our garden. And no, the ground isn't eighteen inches from the bridge of my nose.

Anonymous said...

Lee’s lost eyeglasses made me think (with wonder still) of the time my wife lost her engagement and wedding ring. We’d been playing catch at Portage Park in Chicago and stopped afterwards for a Guinness at the Six Penny Bit, and it was later in the evening when she realized the rings were missing. But it’s common that she leaves them on the sink during a shower and as a scientist, she sometimes must take them off at work, so we figured they must be at home or work. We looked all over the house to no avail before concluding that she must have left them at work, and since it was a weekend, we waited till Monday. But they didn’t turn up in the lab, so at last we returned to where we’d been playing catch. We were only half sure where we’d been playing, and the park district had since mowed the entire area, so we didn’t have much hope, but after about five minutes, poking and kicking at grass clippings, there they were! Most amazingly, despite being unconnected, they were still together, several days and a mown lawn later. I don’t know if they moved less than 18 inches, but they sure didn’t go far.

Michael Leddy said...

I've read these stories several times, and I'm still wondering how these items ended up in the garden and the grass. : )