PINS and Needles

Approaching the ATM, I process a mental flowchart. Which account am I using today? What PIN is required? There’s a line, so I wait, but while waiting, I begin to doubt that I’ve remembered the correct PIN for this account. I start going through PINs and their applications. Some were based on phone numbers, prompting recall of the whole telephone number and where I lived then, triggering memory of the address and where I worked, and my office number, further driving me from certainty that I have the right number, and suddenly opening up a memory chasm which swallows the PIN I’m supposed to be using, launching me into panic about the fucking PIN number – number is redundant, you idiot – and then it’s my turn and I step up and remember —

And then it’s all good. All that worrying was for naught.

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