A Most Impressive Vanishing Act


It’s time to play “The $25,000 Pyramid.” Here are your clues: Right socks. Bubbles. Magicians. Fly by night businesses. Pacifiers. Get it yet? All are “Things That Disappear/Vanish.”

Whatever you call it in your house: pacifier, paci (that’s our nickname), binky, nook, dummy (Hello, U.K.!) they all apparently take the same road to nowhere that socks do. No matter how many you buy, they will disappear. The timing is also suspect. Most of the time they vanish before nap or bedtime or as soon as you need to leave the house. Go to Target to buy a 4 pack and you are guaranteed you’ll be at least a man down by the end of the day.

I think I could find Bigfoot or someone who enjoyed the sitcom “The Nanny” faster than a missing paci. A typical paci search starts with a scan of the floor followed by a tossing of all pillows, blankets, toys and even kids. That never works so then you are down on your hands and knees looking under couches, tables, chairs and looking in ridiculous places that don’t make sense like the sink or toilet. This frantic, sweaty search can go for 15 minutes or more before you pack up the kids and drive to Walgreens or Harris Teeter to restock. Even on a short weekend vacation I’ve had to make a run to a Piggly Wiggly just to get more pacis. Those are the moments where I’ve wished my boys were thumb suckers instead.

I’ve developed various theories over the years as to what happens to the elusive pacis. Does our chocolate lab Dawson eat all of them? Possible, but not likely. He can be outside for hours and the pacis still disappear. We have a scared squirrel in our yard who can confirm his story so he’s got a solid alibi.

Are the kids hiding them to mock me? Nope. Our house isn’t nearly big enough to stock away the hundreds of pacis that have disappeared over the years. That and the blood-curdling cries of “Where’s paci?” and “I want paci!” seem genuine.

What about this “Paci Fairy” that I’ve read about? Could she have such an addiction to binks and pacis that she takes them while the kids are sleeping because we’re not weening them off fast enough? No, disappearances occur with frequency regardless of time of day.

I’ve tried keeping the pacis in my pocket to make sure they don’t vanish. It works, to an extent but they still seem to take off. I’ve found only one solution:


Now that I’ve got that finally figured out I’m going to spend my new found time learning how to move my 401K money into Nuby & NUK.