Heaven forbid, but if you misplaced yourself — strayed accidentally or on purpose, were lost or stolen, or in some other way happened to go missing as some do — how would your rescuers/apprehenders know they had found you and not an imposter if/when they thought they might have?

Just wondering. Not trying to muddle up your day, but you might want to make a list of your personal distinguishing marks and post it on the refrigerator door. You know, height and weight and color of hair (if any) and eyes would be helpful. Also, attestation to your gender. I don’t know about your driver’s license mug shot, but mine could go either way.

If you can stand to look, a surface body search for identifying marks is in order. First sketch a reasonable facsimile of two body outlines, one labeled “front” and the other “back.” If your moles are too numerous to mention, jot down “moles throughout” and go on to birthmarks if you’ve got ’em. Indicate the color, shape and location of it/them on the appropriate outline.

No birthmarks? OK, then, you’re ready for scars. If you’ve lived long at all, you should have a number of those.

Don’t bother with paper cuts, but do register the more prominent ones. Facial scars would be most useful. Abdominal surgery scars are okay, but scars on appendages are better. Especially if you’ve had a knee replaced. Even better if they’re both scarred. You’ll be back home in no time if you’re lucky enough to have two.

I don’t dwell on these things and wouldn’t have mentioned it if I hadn’t noticed a sign in the vet’s office last week. Did you know your vet can implant a little chip beneath your pet’s skin that carries all the identifying information needed to restore Fido to you in the event he requires restoring?

That’s what the sign said, though I do repent my disbelief. It doesn’t say what the chances are that the finder will have Fido checked out for identifying chips before he sells him, eats him or has him hauled off to the animal shelter, or that the possibility of such a chip would deter a dognapper bent on ’napping in the first place. Oh me of little faith.

Let’s see now, have I left anything out? Ah, yes. If it should happen that you choose to come up missing on purpose, that’s fine, but remove those identifying lists and outlines from the refrigerator door on your way out. Also, if Fido has perchance been chipped, don’t take him with you.

It’s not likely, but it is possible that, should he wander into the path of a do-gooder, his informative chip would end up being scanned by a vet in the area from which you had escaped, and the jig would be up.

“Well, yes,” the folks back home might say, “she has been gone for a while, and she did have a dog that matches that description. Where did you say you’re calling from?”

Unless the IRS is interested in back taxes or you left without paying your utility bills, not to worry. The vet will ship Fido back to the homefolks if they want him, which they won’t, but they aren’t coming for you.

Dementia, they’ll be thinking, but that means familial involvement, so it’s not what they’ll tell each other.

“Bless her heart,” is what they’ll say. “Imagine! Pushing 90 and she still has the gumption to go in search of the sun. What a gal!”

Anyhow, I hope that’s what they say about me.

MARJORIE ANDERSON is an Edmond resident.

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