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Foiled again: The horror of finding what was never meant to be found

My column is due in less than 24 hours and I've spent eight of the last 12 looking for several DVDs I rented and need to be returned. I haven't found any of them.

It started as an act of teenage rebellion, which, in retrospect, was pretty weak to begin with. One night, I ran to the Central Market movie rental and picked out three of the most gruesome, carnal, senselessly horrific movies I could find. I intended to watch them on my laptop in the shadowy recesses of my bedroom.

After I'd watched them, I would emerge from The Dungeon -- my eyes blinded by the daylight -- and continue on with my normal day, while visions of decapitation and human destruction danced through my head.

They were all rated R, and I was surprised when the cashier actually agreed to loan them out to me. "Just don't tell your parents," he told me. "I won't," I replied, grinning sinisterly with the pure sinfulness of my deed. And I didn't. They found out about a week and a half later, when my dad got a phone call informing him that Massacre on Madison, The Dead Live On and Slaughterfest are all four days overdue.

The worst part was that my dad didn't even seem bothered by the fact that I was exposing myself to such murder and mayhem when he found out. He didn't even care. Instead, he simply told me in a rather bored voice that I needed to get those "horror flicks" returned before they started accumulating late fees. So much for my little rebellion.

Now, for the past week, the complete failure of my rebellion has been rubbed in my face every day as my entire family has teamed up to search for movies which no one was even supposed to know about in the first place. What's more, I've already had to pay all of the late and renewal fees, and will continue to do so until I either find the darned movies or pay the grossly exorbitant "replacement fee."

I'm convinced that my losing the movies (and subsequently paying for the fees) is some sort of penance for my sinful act of renting inappropriate movies without telling my parents.

Come to think of it, my proneness to losing stuff has gotten me into a lot of trouble over the years. Granted, I'm not as bad as I used to be. I'm a lot tidier person than I was in my formative years, and not having all of my personal belonging piled into an enormous heap in the middle of my bedroom floor has helped me keep everything mostly together, but I still seem to lose an awful lot of junk.

When I think of all the time I have wasted through the years, on my hands and knees, searching the filthy spaces underneath sofas and refrigerators for elusive objects which disappear when they are needed most, I am filled with shame and regret for the time which I could (and should) have used in more fulfilling ways. In that mix of emotions, there is also a hint of fear.

What if I lose something really important someday? Something, for example, that my destiny hinges upon having?

But there's no use fretting about it now. I guess I might as well just accept the fact that I'm destined to be a loser, no matter how organized I become, and move on. The good part about being a "loser" is that I also am a "finder."

Non-losers will never understand the joy that can come from finally being reunited with a treasured belonging. And it's always found in the last place you look.

Nathan Kitzmann is a sophomore at Detroit Lakes High School.