Like most writers, I’m what I call “Productively Superstitious.”

I’ll tell you — with a perfectly straight face — that I’m not superstitious, but I’ve got a totemic piece of clothing/jewelry/keyboard/hat/underwear I dust off when I really need to get the words out.

Which is precisely where I find myself today; my wife is out of town, my darling little 2.5 year-old has decided that nighttime is a good time to climb out of the crib and play (note that “darling” was said through clenched teeth), our daycare provider has the flu (I’m Mr. Mom), and a pretty serious deadline has come and gone.

Normally, this is a job for my Lucky Writer Soccer Jersey (remember, I’m not superstitious).

It’s an old, cotton Manchester United soccer jersey that had never failed me, though the last two times I hauled it out it appeared as if its Mojo was weakening.

Man United lucky writing jersey

You can almost see through it...

I’ve put away as many as 6,000 words a day in that jersey (on one memorable day I crafted upwards of a dozen zippy campaign concepts), but after something on the order of 100 washes, I can see why the magic might be disappearing (along with most of the thread holding it together).

These things happen; like the people that wear them, lucky charms grow old.

So in case the next spin cycle is the soccer jersey’s last, I’m breaking a new totem; a free MailChimp t-shirt proudly displaying a chimpanzee.

I figure the Manchester United jersey worked because that football team is famous for pulling victory from the jaws of defeat, and usually at the last minute. (Yes, I’m faux-Euro enough to call them a “football” team.)

The chimp’s magic?

I can only cite the old saw about unlimited monkeys typing infinitely long, who eventually create the Complete Works of William Shakespeare. I figure I don’t so much need Shakespeare, so the process should happen a little faster.

Like, in an hour or so.

In other words, it’s a shot in the dark, but one that — in my desperation — I feel pretty good about.

Monkey, don’t fail me now.

Keep writing, Tom Chandler.