Yes, it is April 1. This is actually a true story.
My non-profit was recently gifted a large amount of food from a Y2K prepper stash friends found in their house after purchase. Since the food came in sealed food grade buckets–read: still good to serve–we were elated. Storing these heavy buckets of rice, beans, peas, flour, etc. would be tricky, but we found donated storage near the project site. Then I faced the daunting task of unloading 25 dust-covered containers of 25 pounds each in a limited time frame, between meetings, wearing professional clothing.
Enter the UVA Wise ROTC team. A professor (thanks Christa) offered to set me up with some volunteers; when I arrived with the buckets, nine lads with significant muscles waited.
The buckets had to be wiped clean and identified. The boys began wiping faded labels, turning the plastic shiny white as they made a list of the goods. Soon they asked where the stuff had come from. I told them a Y2K stash; they smiled and wiped, and when I returned from a second load to the storage facility one said, “Ma’am, what’s a Y2K?”
One of them remembered his parents telling him about the time people thought the world would end because of computer error. The first lad looked down at the bucket of black turtle beans between his feet and said, “So not World War III?”
Yes, well. God save you and all of us, sweet young kids.
The buckets were stored quickly, quite a feat given that I also had in my SUV a whole bunch of open boxes and bags and sometimes just goods slung in there, for a cat rescue. Also my own travel wardrobe, for a week away from home, in three swag bags such as one takes to a grocery store. My friend Donald and I would connect the next day for the additional donations, so one ROTC lad was removing and restacking things. I told him if anything appeared damaged or horrible, set it aside and we’d toss it.
Everything was accomplished with speed and I drove off to my next appointment with effusive thanks and ten minutes to spare.
That night, I realized some clothing was missing from my luggage.
I went out and looked through the donation boxes, but they were gone. My stuff had fallen out, gotten mixed in, deemed unworthy, and presumably tossed. It was NOT their fault. In fact, I was the one who threw away the leftovers box without bothering to look in it.
Herein is my dilemma, fellow travelers–aside from the hit my ego takes at knowing my plastic bag of smalls (what you would call underwear) and a couple of t-shirts were that tatty: my non–profit’s long-suffering accountant Amy set me up with Dext, an immediate photograph app for receipts. You snap the shot, write a tagline categorizing and explaining the expense, and when the auditors show up someday, everything is simple.
The receipt from Walmart the day after the ROTC lads stored the Y2K buckets lists several food items for travel and meetings in my hotel; right in the middle is Hanes Panty. (They were a six-pack of granny white briefs, if anyone wants to know, the cheapest kind I could find.)
What do I write in Dext about the receipt: replacement essential goods? The ROTC boys tossed my underwear? This is one of those rare situations where, the more one tries to tell the truth, the worse it gets. Do I start back with Y2K?
We have a board retreat Monday for this non-profit. I will need to tell my treasurer–a straight-laced kind Christian man who insists on wearing a suit even when our meetings fall on weekends–what I bought and why. Perhaps I can buy him a drink first–off the official expense account, I hasten to add. Except I don’t think he drinks. Or didn’t before this explanation.
Next time I buy underwear at my own expense, I’m getting something from a nice store in multiple colors of silk. If I’m going to jail, I at least want to have some nice foundation garments to take with me.