Not My Coat

Something is wrong. I have this full-length black wool coat. I’ve probably had it for three to five years. I pulled it out of the closet a couple of weeks ago, put it on and said, “This is not my coat.”

For one thing, it felt too big. And there were three buttons down the front, while I’m pretty sure my coat had two. Also, there were little flaps on the pockets and a belt in back that I don’t recall being there before.
This must be Jessica’s coat, I thought. She must have taken mine and left her coat here by mistake. I called my oldest daughter. “You have my coat,” I said.
“You have my black wool coat. You must have gotten it confused with yours the last time you were over.”
“I don’t think so,” she said. “I just dropped my coat off at the cleaners.”
“You mean you dropped off my coat at the cleaners,” I said. “Thanks.”
“No, I remember the lining and the hole in the pocket.”
I pressed on. “Well, does it have two buttons or three?”
“I don’t know. Two I guess.”
“Is there a belt in back and flaps on the pockets?”
“I don’t know. I don’t think so.”
She took a shot:  “I think Gina has a black wool coat. Maybe the one you have is Gina’s.”
“Maybe,” I said, but I figured she was just looking for a way to hang up.
I called daughter Gina. “You have my coat,” I said.
“You have my black wool coat. You must have gotten it confused with yours the last time you were here.”
“I don’t own a black wool coat,” she said. “I have a black leather coat.”
“Really?” I said. “Because the coat I have is too big for me. Also, it has three buttons down the front and a belt in the back and little flaps on the pockets.”
“Sorry, not mine,” she said.
I had to believe her.
I wore the coat to work and stood in front of my coworkers.
“I don’t think this is my coat,” I said.
“What? Why?” asked Linda.
I explained about the buttons and the belt and the little pocket flaps.
“That is not your coat,” said Ann, who has opinions on things. “That coat is too big for you, and yours was better material.”
“Right!” I said. We agreed that Jessica must be mistaken. Or trying to pull a fast one.
Linda was noncommital. You’d think she didn’t care.
Last weekend my middle daughter, Jill, stopped by. “Do you have a black wool coat?” I asked.
“Because I have this coat and I don’t think it’s mine. My coat had two buttons and this one has three. And it has a belt in back and flaps on the pockets.”
“Maybe you’re getting Alzheimer’s,” she suggested.
“What?! No!”
“I could use a new winter coat,” she said.
I got a voicemail from Jessica saying she had picked up her coat at the dry cleaners – same lining, same hole in the pocket. I had to conclude that it probably wasn’t mine.
I took the coat I have out of the closet and tried it on again. It might be my coat. But I don’t think so.

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