Young Sherlock Holmes

Story Sent in by Elizabeth:

On my first date dinner with Peter, he explained to me all about how he was between jobs:

"My old boss saw me coming in early, staying late, and so he took advantage of that and gave me more work with less pay. When I essentially blackmailed him for a raise, he found some b.s. excuse and fired me, almost on the spot."

I asked, "So what are you doing now?" He had worked in I.T. for some time, and I guessed that he was hot on the trail of some new job.

He replied, "Freelance loss prevention. A buddy of mine did it for a while and made more in a month than I make in a year."

"Freelance loss prevention?"

He picked up his already-used metal fork, turned it over and over in his hands, breathed on it, wiped its handle, and studied it from all sides. He said, "The last person to use this was a Hispanic male, 30 to 35 years old. He ordered chicken."


But he wasn't done. He then inspected his spreading knife and said, "A woman used this one. Female. She was young. Possibly under 10." He looked around as if to spot her somewhere, then returned to it. "She has a good singing voice."

I laughed. "You can tell all that by looking at it?"

He put it down. "I know. It's a gift. But if you know what to look for, the signs are all there."

I asked, "What about that knife indicates that the last person who held it was a good singer?"

He pointed out its edge to me. The tiny serrations seemed a bit worn down, but not the sort of thing you'd notice unless you were looking. He said, "Those have been recently worn down, but not too powerfully. The person who held it has a strong personality, even if he or she may not have been strong him or herself. Probably a singer, around 10. Likely a female."

I had a small, worn, bronze keychain that had been my grandfather's. I passed it across to him and asked him to tell me what he could about it.

He looked it all over and then said, "It's bronze. It was a gift. A 10-year-old girl who's probably a good singer gave it to you..."

I cracked up. He finished, "…or a relative. Someone close. A guy, who was weak towards the end of his life."

My laughter stopped. It was a good guess, although given the charm's obvious age, I suppose it couldn't be that big a jump to figure that it had belonged to an elder person.

He gave it one more look, said, "And you're wearing blue and white-striped underwear," and handed it back to me. "Now, that's something you can actually prove."

I laughed. "But I'm not going to."

"Come on."


He pointed to my plate. "It was used by an accountant with two kids last. That good enough for you?"

I shook my head and finished my meal. About every minute on the minute, he'd point to something else and tell me who had used it last, how old they were, whether or not they were a good singer, and so on. By the end of the date, I used my own powers of deduction to figure out that I wouldn't be seeing him again.

For the record, I was not wearing anything blue and white striped that day.


  1. Is that something you can actually prove?

  2. You should have let him go down on you and let him tell you/guess who else has been there!

  3. What Sherlock Holmes couldn't realize was that Elizabeth was actually "going commando."

  4. Clearly, the last person he dated and who believed his B.S., was a female, most likely a 10-year-old girl who was probably a good singer...

    I think 'freelance Loss Prevention' means watching for shoplifters and then shaking them down for the goods and cash, while imitating a plainclothes officer, after they leave the store.

    1. Most hokey job descriptions are pretty transparent attempts to make something rather mundane or lame sound awesome. I could call himself a "master of the custodial arts" but people would eventually catch on to the fact I'm a janitor.

  5. If it has 3 words or more in the job title, it's more than likely made up. Now that's something you can prove. Sometimes. If the wind is just right.

    What was that movie where Jeff Goldblum touched his girlfriend's unmentionables and knew she had cheated on him? Yeah, that guy ripped off Jeff Goldblum. How many XMen are there to rip off? And he picks Jeff Goldblum? This is the biggest flaw in the evening.

  6. *I* used to have blue and white striped underwear!! I wonder who's wearing them now, and if this guy could tell they used to be mine?

  7. TommyD love your comments lmfao


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