Missing flight fueling numerous theories

Who? What? When? Where? Why? How? Any good reporter, investigator, or writer worth his or her salt knows that, when faced with a mystery, these questions have to be answered.

Reporters and investigators usually cut straight to the questions, but writers have to get there the long way. Since I?m neither of the first two, I must be the third, so we?ll be taking the scenic route today.

Like most people, I enjoy a good mystery. Connecting the dots (so to speak) to solve a problem really fires up my brain. I try to keep a bucket of water handy just in case smoke starts coming out my ears.

I particularly like mysteries of the paranormal type, like the Bermuda Triangle or the Loch Ness Monster. That?s probably because there are just some questions that it?s impossible to answer logically about them, so I have to ponder harder.

There has been a lot of talk in the news lately about one mysterious event in particular. Yep, I?m talking about Flight 370, the missing 777.

So many theories, so little time, although it seems like the longer this mystery lasts, the more theories become available. Was it hijacked? Did the pilot commit suicide? What?s this about stolen passports? Why do the passengers? cell phones still ring before going to voicemail?

Above all, just where is the darn thing anyway? I heard it explained today that they?re looking for one plane?possibly crashed in deep jungle or sunk in the ocean?in an area six times the size of the lower 48 states. That?s a lot of room for one plane to get lost in, no matter what happened to it.

I know, I can hear you. ?I?m reading the Op-Ed page for some light reading, maybe something funny, and you?re giving me THIS??

Dear readers, I?m here to put your minds at rest. I know exactly what happened to that plane, and I?m going to tell you so you don?t have to worry either.

Take a nice deep breath. Think about that pen. You know, the one that felt good in your hand and wrote so nicely until it just disappeared one day.

Think about that one black sock with the green stripe that you haven?t found a mate for in over a year, even though you counted the socks before you put them in the wash.

Think about your favorite pair of jeans. They fit just perfectly and you?ll look great in them with this sweater…where are they? You?re already running late! You just saw them on the shelf yesterday!

And speaking of running late, where are your car keys? Think about that last piece of pie you were saving for dessert today. You can almost taste it, but it?s gone! The plate is there, but sans pie!

You see folks, all of these things just disappeared, too. And all of them went to the same place (except for that piece of pie?your spouse ate that for a midnight snack).

Somewhere far, far away, a single planet orbits a single sun. Its terrain is strange and unusual: Seas of ink are habitats for feral ballpoint pens, reclusive socks lurk in caves under mountains of laundry, and keys jingle their way through canyons of homework and library books.

Anything can travel to this magical world through any of the portals scattered around Earth.

Keys seem to be the only thing that can make a return trip to our world, and they delight in reappearing in any place that has been searched more than twice.

There?s even a special continent for planes that have disappeared from our world. Unfortunately the only thing on it is an airport that doesn?t have a Starbuck?s or WiFi.

Have no fear, the lost passengers will still be able to tame those feral ballpoints, read those lost library books, and maybe, just maybe, finish that homework you lost in third grade. They won?t be eating your pie.

What?s that you say? I haven?t answered any of the questions (and I?m quite possibly off my rocker)? You?ll have to read the sequel for that. I did say we?d take the scenic route.

In the meantime and in my opinion, the longer this stretches on, the less likely it becomes that the passengers or crew will be found alive. I sincerely hope otherwise.

I?m sure that a logical explanation exists, and that we?ll eventually figure it out. In the meantime, please keep them and their families in your thoughts or prayers?and hug your own family a little bit extra if you get the chance.