Monday, November 27, 2017

A special chair tells our stories

     Clothes that are too dirty for the closet, but too clean for the laundry: welcome to The Chair.
     Isn’t that what a bedroom chair is for?
     Not for stacking books. Draping a special occasion purse. Depositing paper products destined for the bathroom. 

     However, you might find them crowding in on The Chair, too.   
    My excuse last night was that I was too pooped after coming home way beyond my normal bedtime to do anything else. Rather than land on the floor – I honestly don’t have that in my genes – my slacks, sweater and top went to The Chair where they rested for the next six hours debriefing quietly from an awesome night out. The clothes, like me, wished to savor the evening a tiny bit longer.
     Truthfully, the first thing – perhaps, the second, or third thing – I did this morning was to examine each article before sending into the hamper or hanging for a rerun. You would think I would have done that with one toss of a minor decision last night.  The Chair made sense without much effort on my part.
     The other odd thing is that I folded the clothes neatly, too, on The Chair. There is hope for me, those of you who are cringing in your own chairs at this moment. You won’t turn me into a neat freak completely at this late date.
     In a way I am a little guilty that The Chair is a handmade one designed by an area craftsman, Roy Grisewood, using maple wood from the region. The seat is woven, and twigs along with bigger branches make a freeform design. It is truly a work of art and should be left at that for appreciation. It is not an object bought in a furniture store, or a clothes tree.
     If The Chair could speak back, though, it is grateful that it is thought of so highly that it is put to reasonable purpose on a nightly basis. That’s my rationale here.
     What memories all those clothes share with you, dear chair.

     Remember the night I came back crazy with joy after the concert sitting five rows from Sting? Those black leather skintight pants – those were the days – and light gray sequined sweater all for Sting’s approval, and I doubt I was more than a speck in the crowd to him. I honestly tried. I kidded my husband that if Sting reached out, I would be gone in a flash on his jet plane to Tuscany. Forget about the Genesee Valley. Forget about my job. Those idle dreams.  Needless to say, the outfit wasn’t one I wore around town the next morning, or the one after. As I recall, it was used again a couple “somewheres” before leaving me for other more youthful closets.
     Then there was the black outfit that sat and sat on The Chair for days simply because I couldn’t mentally get the energy to move it anywhere else. I would walk past it and tell myself that I ought to do something. I’d say to myself, “Pick it up.” I didn’t take action until I felt a fresh hope come over me.  That funeral had taken its toll on me and I required time for grieving.
     Chair, I threw off my travel clothes after a long flight and the following morning as I picked them up I still smelled the scents – pungent and unpleasant – from hours of sitting in a plane and lack of decent washing after a trip in the Moroccan desert.
     Remember Chair, the exercise clothes I threw down on your seat before I raced to the hospital emergency department after the dog bite? Supposedly, I thought I needed fixing up a bit before I was seen in public. Am I the only one who cleans up before going to the hospital?
     My cat will sleep under The Chair if he is waiting for me to get into bed, but never, ever on top of the chair. He knows his place.
      I do have a set of hooks in the entry of my closet area that would be the perfect spot for clothes in the in between clean and dirty stage. Unfortunately, the hooks already are in use for robes, a couple sweatshirts and my yoga pants. I told you I am organized.
    Anybody in the military past or present would disagree with me totally. They have learned a discipline about living life that I don’t have. If there is a chair in their bedroom, I doubt that their partner or spouse dares placing a single piece of clothing on it for long.
     On the other hand, I do know that there are folks out there who consider the floor a just space for leaving clothes and probably won’t own up to it unless you walk right into their bedroom. I am no judge. It’s all about priorities.
     Parents sweat it out for a few years with teenagers and their slipshod habits, which come to an end once they have their own first apartments. I promise you, it will be so.
     Right now as I finish writing, I will move through my bedroom to pick up the clothes lying on The Chair and wear them again today. Thank you, Chair, for your special place in my world.