Big Brother?
By Jeanne Robertson

After traveling all week I arrived at the hotel in Indianapolis around 
seven p.m., and immediately checked with Jerry back home. Most of the conversation consisted of me telling him how tired I was and how I really needed a good night's sleep. My speech was early the next morning and
I was heading straight to bed. I was worn out. Completely whipped to a frazzle.

When I hung up, I noticed information on the beside table that the new Circle Mall had opened in Indianapolis. It was accessible to my hotel 
with through a walkway, and it had a Nordstrom. The word Nordstrom perks me up. It's a family quirk.

When I returned home the next night, Jerry immediately asked how the speeches had gone and I told him. Had I been able to get a good night's sleep Friday, he wanted to know. He had been concerned that I was so tired.

"Oh yes," I assured him, not mentioning the trip to Nordstrom. "I felt 
much better by morning. I just needed to crash."

"But you were able to get to bed early?" he questioned again.

"Yes," I lied, for no reason other than it seemed like the thing to do.

Jerry got that little smiley smirk on his face that husbands can get and handed me a piece of paper. "Well, here. You'd better call this number and talk to the people at Visa. Someone charged $332.47
 to your card at Nordstrom around 9:00 last night in Indianapolis. Wonder who it was?"

At 11:00 p.m. the night before, Jerry had been awakened by a call from someone at Visa headquarters. Their computers had kicked out a red flag on my card because charges were being placed on the same card from three locations at approximately the same time. First, someone at Global Travel in Burlington had charged tickets on my card late that afternoon. Jerry explained that could certainly be possible. His wife's airline tickets were always charged to her Visa card.

Someone else had been charging on that same card number at the same time in Florida, the Visa representative told him. That could be possible too, Jerry explained. His wife's secretary was in 
Florida on vacation but was keeping up with business via long distance. She easily could have
 ordered something for the office late that afternoon and put it on that card.

Then the woman wanted to know if someone could have charged $332.47 to that same card that evening at Nordstrom in Indianapolis. "That's when I became concerned," Jerry told me with a fake puzzled look. "I told her that my wife was in Indianapolis but it couldn't have been her. I had talked 
to her earlier she was going straight to bed. She was absolutely worn out."

I said, 'You were correct, but I took a drink of Nordstrom and felt much better."

This "progress" thing can get out of hand.

Jeanne Robertson, professional speaker and author, can be reached through
Photo by Kleeberg Studio.