Finders keepers?

Published 8:50 am Monday, March 23, 2009

By Staff
There are treasures lying beside the highways and byways of this wonderful country. Ask any college student who had mismatched furniture in their dorm room or apartment.
What actually got me to thinking about all those treasures was a denim shirt hanging on a pole by the roadside on my route home.
I realize that probably what happened was the shirt blew off the back of a truck or other vehicle and landed in the ditch along the road. Some kind person picked up the shirt and put it on display in hopes that the owner would pass that way again and claim their lost shirt.
Upon pondering the possibility of that story, I began to wonder about proper etiquette in such a case. How long is the proper amount of time to wait for the item to be claimed by the owner? A day, two days, five minutes?
If you ask some of the people I know, they say immediately. Chances are, according to them, if it’s beside the road it’s fair game no matter what it is.
Over the years I have seen things that no person in their right mind would even want to retrieve from the roadside. Seriously, who wants one, size 14, red Adidias running shoe? Not me. I don’t think I’d take the time to pick that one up even if his partner was sitting right beside it.
That got me to thinking about something else. How many times have you seen (mostly near school or college campuses) a pair of tennis shoes tied together by the laces and draped (or thrown) over power lines? First of all, how did they get there and how many throws did it take to get them there? Second, who’s brave enough to shimmy up a power pole and tempt death just to get back a pair of sneakers that probably smelled in the first place? No one I know.
I guess the moral of the story is to allow ample time for owners to reclaim lost items no matter where or when they are found. I know that if I’d lost my nice denim shirt with the Harley logo emblazoned on the pocket, I’d probably want it back.  If, and that’s a big word, I knew where I had lost said item, I’d certainly want it back. However, usually when I lose something it stays lost and is never seen again.
As a matter of fact, I have a cute light blue shirt with Winnie-the-Pooh on the front. Really nice as a matter of fact.
So here’s the thing, if you were ever the owner of a plus-sized Winnie-the-Pooh shirt in light blue, give me a call. I found your shirt.
Lisa Tindell is news editor for The Brewton Standard. She can be reached by email at