(Originally posted March 13, 2006)
Hey, new category! Adventures in dog walking. Because, you know, this website is all about the things that go on in my life; and other than knitting and showing off pictures of Shortie’s dog, walking is something I’ve been doing a lot of lately. So here’s a new category about the things that happen to me, or that I see, or that I think about, while going on a 3+ mile walk every day. It won’t always be directly about the dog, but she’s the catalyst for most of it since … why else would I be out walking?
For instance; Sunday morning I was walking Bridgett before we went out to Keystone Heights for the day. While I was walking her a little bit later than usual, I was still up much earlier than I wanted to be up for a Sunday morning. I started off about 7:30, and for some reason decided not to take the route I usually use. When I came around the corner heading to NE park, I decided at the last second to turn down 6th Terrace before the park and head home, since we’d been walking for close to 45 minutes and Bridgett was starting to pant. Going through the park, although she loves it, would have added close to another half hour to our walk. So I walked down this road that – even though it is two blocks over from my own street – I hardly ever walk down.
About three houses down I see a guy setting up for a yard sale. I’m curious, because I do love a good yard sale, but I don’t have my wallet with me and he’s obviously not open yet, so I keep walking by while kind of looking at his stuff out of the corner of my eye. He has a really neat looking chair, of a wooden variety in almost a mission style… and I can see from far away that the print on the cushion has that 70’s quality of yellows and browns. I can sort of make out a round thing, and I’m guessing that it’s either a cowboy scene or a boat scene… do you know the type of upholstery that I’m talking about? Everybody’s parents had a couch or a chair made with this, in their dens in the 70’s, along with some brown/orange/yellow crocheted afghans and maybe some weed hidden in a box in the side table. Yeah. You know what I’m talking about. The weed made those colors bearable, didn’t it?
But I digress.
The guy calls out “good morning,” because that’s what people do when they accidentally make eye contact while passing. I stop, put Kermit on pause, and we exchange pleasantries centered around dogs. Everybody who stops me and talks in the morning wants to know what kind of dog Bridgett is. So we chat for a few, and he says that I should come back and shop later.
That’s when I got a good look at The Chair.
Now, two things that you may or may not know about me is that (1) I love rocking chairs and (2) I love kitschy things. And this chair? The one with the mission style (not missionary style; drag your minds out of the gutter for a second and stay with me) woodwork? The one with the brown and yellow upholstery? I get a good look at the cushion, and it’s not a cowboy scene. It’s not a boat scene. It is – and you can’t make this shit up – a spinning wheel. And? It’s a rocking chair.
I could have passed out on the spot.
I allowed as how I had my eye on that chair, and that I might come back for it. In my head I’m already making all kinds of excuses to Tim about why I would impulsively buy a chair that I know he’s going to say is fucking hideous. The guy says to make him an offer, but I feel kind of bad because here I am bargaining and he’s not even open yet. As someone who’s had garage sales, I hate it when people come by before I’m open and try to talk me down. So I ask him how much he wants for it.
$15? For a cushy rocking chair? With spinning wheel upholstery? Dude. Duuuuudes. That chair is so fucking mine! I promise him that I will be back in about 15 minutes, with the cash and a truck.
Needless to say that on the rest of the walk home, I’m trying out different ways in my head to tell Tim that not only do I think I need to borrow about $5, but I also need his help to pick up what is possibly the single most unsightly piece of furniture that he’s probably ever laid his eyes on.
So I get home, but Tim is still in the shower. I get fresh water for the dog. I find my wallet and count out my worldly sums of $7. I sit on the edge of the bed and wait expectantly for Tim to open the door from the bathroom. He does, and wisely takes one look at me and says, “What.”
“You know how when I do really impulsive, funny things? You know how you like that about me? You know how endearing it is that I’m so, ah, impulsive?”
He’s just staring at me, his mouth starting to twitch a little bit.
“Well, ah… can I borrow $8? And can you help me go pick up… ah… a rocking chair I just bought?” I’m giving him that silly grin and batting my eyes, playing it badly for all that it’s worth.
He just starts to laugh and shake his head, mumbling as he always does about what a goof I am.
We get the money together, and go to get the chair, and have no problems loading it into the truck or getting it into the house, and have I mentioned what a great sport Tim is? He’s the best. I could tell the second he saw it, that it burned itself into his inner eye… which he is now going to have to gouge out with a spoon. It really is an ugly chair. I love it! I! LOVE! THIS! CHAIR! And I spent the rest of the day mentioning how much I love my new chair. Hee.
Oh, but did I mention how once we got it home, that it wouldn’t fit in the corner of the living room? We had to move the furniture around for about half an hour to get it to fit… and at one point I was just collapsed with laughter. We’re going through all these contortions to make room for this chair that my long-suffering husband is not ever going to want to see again. I’m giggling now, writing about it. Don’t worry if you’re not laughing. It may have been a “you had to be there” moment.
The chair is not perfect. I need to patch a couple holes where you can tell someone dropped a cigarette and burned the fabric. And the wood needs to be cleaned. But it is comfy as all get out and… and it has a spinning wheel on it! How perfect is that?!
So thank you, Bridgett, for being too tired to walk through the park. If I hadn’t turned down that road to head back to home, I would never have seen The Chair.
And now you too can see the spinning wheel chair; the eye-blinding chair; the perfect chair. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
Edited to add: when I wrote this four years ago, there was a pop-up link to a photo of the chair. That was lost when the old Snarkland posts were lost, but here – I found one in my flickr pages!