How My Aversion to Being Ashy Got Me in Expensive Trouble
Lemme tell you a story about how my aversion to being ashy got me in some expensive trouble. I know I’m the Professional Troublemaker but this ain’t the type of smoke I wanted.
On Friday, I did a last minute meetup with my awesome agent, Andrea Nelson Meigs. She doesn’t come to Chicago often so I had to see her! I get in an Uber and get to the restaurant before she does, because Chicago traffic in rush hour can be the hunger games. But it’s no problem because it’s a gorgeous day out so I’m just enjoying being outside. When she gets there, we hug and go sit at a highboy table. It was a bit after 6:30pm. She was having dinner with someone at 7pm so, this was gonna be quick.
I put my bag on the table and I look at my left hand and it’s empty. I instantly yell “FUCK!!!” My wedding band and engagement ring were not where they should have been: on my finger. OMG I LOST MY DIAMOND RINGS! I LEFT THEM IN MY UBER! Andrea’s like “What happened!?!” Cuz I don’t usually cuss in front of her, because I try to keep my potty mouth away from her classy self.
So what had happened was… when I got in the Uber, I looked at my hands and they were lowkey ashy. Well, ashy, by my standards. You already know being moisturized is a deep core value of mine. So I took off my rings (cuz I just got them cleaned and polished), put them in my lap and put on hand cream. Buttttt I forgot to put them back when I finished. So when I got out the car, well… I left without them rings.
I grab my phone and run out the restaurant and walk into the empty street, looking on the ground in case the rings fell there. NOPE! Nothing.
I’m walking around in circles saying “OMG OMG OMG” as I go in the Uber app, hit the last trip and click option of “Lost item.” Mind you, it’s been 20 minutes since I got out that uber, at this point. I AM SHOOKETH. How many people have been in that car since I got out?!? Is someone somewhere celebrating this come up? LAWDT!
Uber app gives me the option to call the driver and after 3 rings, he picks up. Me, talking fast: “HI. YOU JUST DROPPED ME OFF 20 MINUTES AGO AT SHAW’S. I LEFT MY WEDDING RINGS IN YOUR CAR!”
“Hi. Yes I remember you.”
“Can you please please please look for my rings? Are they there?”
“I’m about to drop off a passenger. I can look right then.”
“Ok I’ll hold.”
I AM LOSING IT. Pacing in front of the restaurant while the valets look at me concerned. I am very much like this internally:
Because HOW MANY PEOPLE HAVE BEEN IN THAT CAR, FATHA GAWD?!?
Driver: Ok I’m about to check for your rings.
Me: THANK YOU!
At the same time, I’m thinking “who do I call first? Is it Priti, my friend and jeweler who made these rings? It definitely can’t be Mr. Jones cuz NAWL! These ain’t just regular rings I can go get replaced. He got these designed and custom made. These are 1 of 1. I’m FRANTIC. Pure panic mode!
Driver: I don’t see them on the seat.
Me: Please check inside the seats. On the floor. They must have fallen!
Driver: *spends 1 minute rustling* WAIT! I found ONE!
Me: OMG YES. There are TWO. Please look more!
*after the longest 30 seconds on my life*
Driver: I found the other one!
Me: YES YES YES! Can you please bring it here right now?
Driver: I’m on the North side already. I’m like 25 minutes away.
Me: It doesn’t matter. PLEASE bring them straight here. I will make it worth your while.
So we exchange numbers and he tells me he’s headed that way. It’s like 6:45 at this point.
I go back in restaurant, armpits sweating. Heart beating. And I tell Andrea (and our waitress, who is now invested in this saga) that he found the rings and should be there in 20-30 minutes.
Andrea is like “wowww.” And we’re chatting and she’s looking at the clock with me as time goes on. I’m still not taking deep breaths because until those rings are in my hand, I’m not feeling peaceful.
At 7pm, her client walks in and goes to sit and Andrea tells him she needs 5 more minutes. She was shook for me and wanted to see if these rings will show up. At 7:05, I tell her to go to dinner and I’ll text her when the rings get there. She hugs me and tells me to make sure I let her know.
At 7:10, I get a text from Mr. Jones. “I’m outside. Down the block.” YIKES!!!! Oh yeah, forgot to tell y’all that he was coming to pick me up so we could go to dinner. I reply back with “Give me 10 minutes.” I was stalling like shit. And I surely wasn’t gon tell him til I got these rings back!
So I call the Uber driver, and he says “I’m 5 minutes away. Don’t worry. I’ll be there.”
At 7:20 he calls me and says he’s outside. I get up with the rapidity of Sonic the Hedgehog and RUN outside. He rolls down the window and hands me my 2 rings. I wanted to kneel down and lay prostrate on the streets of downtown Chicago. The praise in my SPIRIT?!? Just lemme SHOUT.
I put them rings on SO FAST!!! And I said THANK YOU THANK THANK YOU THANK YOU.
Check it, doe. 2 days before, Mr. Jones had just handed me a bunch of cash because I’m notorious for not carrying any. And he always tells me to have some on hand. So he went to ATM and gave me cash. Well, standing on that street, I reached in my bag, pulled out my wallet, took out my whole wad of cash and handed it to the driver. I didn’t count how much but TAKE IT ALL, SIR.
Me: THANK YOU SO MUCH!
Driver: *looks at the money* *shakes his head* OH NO that is too much. I can’t take this.
Me: No. It’s just enough. You have blessed me so much today. You have shown me generosity and I am so grateful. God bless you.
Driver: I’m a son of Ethiopia. My mother taught me to never take what’s not mine. I had to bring this back to you. I told you not to worry.
Me: And I’m from Nigeria. I was taught to show gratitude. Thank you!
Driver: *looks down at the cash on his front seat* Wow. God bless you. Please give me 5 stars.
Me: FIVE STARS?!? Sir, I’d give you 10 if they had it. Thank you so much!
My heart is soaring for so many reasons. I run back in the restaurant, and go to Andrea’s table. “I GOT MY RINGS BACK!”
Andrea: YES YES YES!
The person she’s having dinner with? Courtney B. Vance.
Andrea: Courtney, btw, this is Luvvie Ajayi Jones, one of my amazing clients. She’s a 3 time New York Times bestselling author and speaker. And ummm she just lost her wedding rings and got it back.
Courtney: *fist bumps* Nice to meet you. And WHAT?!? Oh I need to know what happened.
I recount the whole story and his mouth is agape.
Courtney: You’ve gotta sit down and have dinner with us.
Me: I can’t. My husband is actually here to pick me up. We’re gonna go to dinner. And I know you and Andrea gotta talk!
Courtney: No, he needs to join us too! Cuz look at God! You lost those rings, so you could sit RIGHT HERE.
Soooo I call Mr. Jones, told him Courtney B. Vance is inviting him to dinner (because WHAT IS LIFE?!?). And he comes in. We have an amazing 2 hour dinner with my legendary agent, an iconic actor who is married to another iconic actor. And right before we leave, I tell my husband that 2 hours before, I had lost the very valuable rings he got me. You know, the ones we took a whole oath with. He looked around the table, looked down at my hand, and said “Sooo I guess I don’t need to say much.”
And that is how lotion almost cost me A LOT.
The moral of the story is more than 1:
- Just be ashy.
- Make sure you moisturize before leaving the house.
- Let the rings be dirty. Don’t take them off in public.
- There are good, decent people in the world.
- God is good ALLATAHM.
- God’s grace is abundant.
- Always carry cash.
- Gratitude is a must.
- Make sure your valuables are insured.
- Look behind you when getting out of any Uber.
- BONUS: Courtney B. Vance is an awesome human being.
P.S. I’m still rubbing my left hand at random times. My spirit is STILL shooketh, even though I got them back. WHEW!
P.P.S. Here’s a pic one of the valet folks took after this dinner. He really sabotaged us with that blue light.
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