It’s actually ‘The Newcott Scoop’

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If I ever decided to start a career as an identity thief, I would be fired immediately. Any plans to use a stolen credit card would be foiled not by a terrible forgery or an awful disguise, but just by the clerk simply asking for my name.

“I can’t remember,” I would tell him after an uncomfortable silence.

I can’t remember names, and a face to me is even worse. Even my own. Every morning I look into the mirror and think, “Hey, what’s Josh Groban doing in my bathroom?” (In case my wife was wondering, that’s why you hear “You Raise Me Up” coming from the shower every day).

This is why I don’t take it personally when someone forgets my own name. Frankly, the world is a much friendlier place when you apparently have an early onset case of Alzheimer’s.

“Do I know that guy?” says every person I encounter on the street. Answer: No, you don’t. You were just waving at the person behind me and I decided we must have been old buddies from high school and gave you a hug.

I don’t make many friends that way, and there are probably a few warrants for my arrest because of it, but the friends that I do make I be sure to remember.

PREVIOUSLY: The Newcott Scoop: We’re here to party

On Monday I celebrated my 27th birthday, which is really an unremarkable number. I don’t think even IHOP bothers sending you a coupon for a free “Rooty Tooty” when you turn 27, so I was surprised to hear a knock on my front door.

“Is that my surprise party?!” I asked my wife, again, for the sixth time that day.

After she answered me with only a blank stare, I decided I should probably tone down my excitement a bit.

Little did I know that a surprise party was indeed in store for this big day in the form of my father-in-law unexpectedly arriving to spend the night.

Beth and I usually have an open-door policy with anyone who is willing to enter our slightly litter-box scented home, so the visit wasn’t unwelcomed. Although, I usually do appreciate a little notification beforehand to deal with said litter-box scent. I was informed that he did call an hour ahead of time, but that really isn’t much of a heads-up considering it’s a three hour drive from SLO.

“Wow, I can’t believe you came all the way here for my birthday,” I said to him.

“It’s your birthday?” he replied.

Although this man was partly responsible for my wife existing, I must admit I have only really spoken to him a handful of times. I knew him in a way that was different than anyone else I had ever met, in that I did have his name and his face memorized, but not much of anything else.

Thankfully this time I got to know him a little bit better. I suppose that’s bound to happen when your father-in-law needs to wash the only pair of pants he brought and your wife forgets that the dryer is broken.

As he stood in our living room in his boxers, watching through the window his pants fluttering in the breeze, I briefly considered taking mine off as well to talk to him on his own level.

I decided against it.

People are more than just faces and names, they come with experiences, with baggage. Sometimes they have lots of baggage, and sometimes only one pair of pants.

My father-in-law has only one pair of pants.

Somehow, just knowing this made me feel like I knew him far more intimately, maybe too intimately. I really couldn’t wait for his pants to dry.

On his way out the door he stopped to write me a check for my birthday. I told him it was unnecessary, but he insisted and wrote one anyway.

Gratefully, I accepted it, and only once he was gone did I realize who it was made out to: Mr. Zac Northcott.

So maybe when it comes to names, I’m not the only one.

With that in mind, maybe I should formerly introduce myself to you, the reader. My name is Zachary Newcott, and you’re reading the Newcott Scoop.

Zachary Newcott is a multimedia reporter for the Visalia Times-Delta/Tulare Advance-Register.

Find the original article here.

Zachary Newcott
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Zachary Newcott

Zack is a father of one and resides with his family in Visalia, CA. His series "The Newcott Scoop" comes out every Tuesday.

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Zachary Newcott
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