Monday, July 27, 2015


Jeff has an Ugly Brown Chair.  It IS kinda cool.  It IS very comfortable.  It is a great place for man and beast alike to nap. (Caution: after the 6th month, pregnant women should not attempt to nap in the Ugly Brown Chair.  It will take a chainfall to extract them.) (Yes, I speak from experience.)

However, none of that changes its appearance.

The Ugly Brown Chair has many, many holes in its upholstery. (Was faux fur furniture covering in the 70's called upholstery?) To prevent the spread of jiblets of Ugly Brown Chair stuffing throughout the entire house, the Ugly Brown Chair usually has a (fur-covered) ESPN stadium blanket thrown across it. This keeps the plethora of animals that track in and out of the Ugly Brown Chair from further digging into the foam as well as keeping the already loosened bits from sticking in their fur once they have napped and are free to wander about.

A couple of weeks ago, the lovely Meg was in town.  I met up with her and our mutual friend Jacquie for lunch.  Meg told us that she'd probably have another friend with her...Robby.  Robby is a very talented interior design guru.  Also, a very nice guy.  We got to see some photos of his work.  I was very impressed...he was a guy that salvages a lot of used things to make very beautiful, eclectic room re-dos.  He had pictures of a whole fireplace wall/mantle thingy made entirely of old pallet wood.  It was awesome.

After our lunch, I got to thinking...maybe Robby could provide me some insight on what to do with Ugly Brown Chair that would preserve its usefulness, coolness and comfort while helping it not be so...well...ugly.

I texted Meg and told her that I would send her some pictures if she would be so kind as to forward them to Robby for his expert opinion.

I took off the protective ESPN blanket covering to give him the full perspective:

I was told that the kindest thing I could do was give Ugly Brown Chair a mercy killing.

So now I have to ask those of you out there who are reading there naught to be done to save UBC?

Monday, July 6, 2015

Airing your laundry

This may just be my favorite photograph of all time.  Left to right we have: My sister Christy, my Granny, my cousin Jackie and myself.

Flapping in the breeze? 3 pairs of my Granny's underpants (or as we called 'em, drawers).

We are all on the incredibly unsafe swing set that was in Granny's side yard. That see-saw thingy that Christy and Granny are on?  Nearly claimed the last digit of my left pinkie finger.  The swings?  There's no stinkin' plastic tubing around those links, nosirree. You had to be careful and not let them pinch the hide off of you. It must be fairly new in this picture because all of the plastic caps are still on the ends of the tubing...that was not the case in later years when the sharp, rusty ends were just tetanus looking for a place to happen (plus wasps hid all up in there.)  Also?, if Jackie and I got to swinging together, we could get the frame's legs to tilt off the ground.  We turned the whole kit and caboodle over more than a few times.

There is so much I love about this picture and the memories it evokes.

Granny's in her curlers...which means this was probably taken on a Saturday since she was "setting" her hair for church on Sunday.
There's not a shoe in sight...for any of us.  Back in the day, between May and September I had to be forced into footwear of any kind.
And of course the clothesline in the back...many, many times we'd be playing away and a cloud would come up...then we knew to race into the house for a clothes basket to get the laundry in before it got rained on.  Granny didn't use the dryer in the had to get pretty darn rainy for days for her not to use the clothesline.  My favorite thing was when she did the sheets...we'd run up and down between the hung sheets shrieking like banshees...careful not to TOUCH the sheets and get them dirty.

It's too bad the picture isn't wider or you'd be able to see the trash  burning barrel that would have been just a bit further to the left and well behind us.  Basically a 55 gallon drum that we burned the household trash in...all of the scraps were thrown out for the possums, anything that wouldn't stink was burned in the burning barrel.  I remember keeping the milk jugs back so that once the fire got going good, you could hold them up over the fire and watch them melt.  There's really no telling what sorts of fumes I inhaled.

(Funny story: Once when Christy was in her early 20s, she was visiting a friend's apartment in Atlanta.  They had dinner and the friend went to go pick up some ice cream for dessert while Christy cleaned up the kitchen.  The apartment was on the second floor and had a balcony. The friend comes back, goes upstairs to the apartment and asks Christy why was there  spaghetti in the bushes downstairs...Christy told them that she threw the scraps out.  Apparently, not something you do "in the city.")