Family Heirlooms

Now that we’re getting new living room furniture, it’s time to part with the family heirlooms that have occupied the space for the last five years. As you can imagine, this is a sad process. All of these items made the move from Minneapolis with me, and the inventory includes:

A rust-colored, swiveling glider chair. When you glide in it, the chair rubs against the base, and it sounds like King Kong grinding his teeth. It belonged to my mom, and for obvious reasons she couldn’t wait to unload it.

A brown swiveling rocker that came from my grandparents’ house. On the ugly scale, it’s a close second to the rust chair. And for the last five years, it’s been covered with an afghan and known as the ‘dog chair.’

Another piece from my grandparents; a beautiful end table with simulated wood grain finish. If my grandma were around today, she’d probably ask, “Why in the world do you still have that ugly table?” It is functional, in that it does a great job of supporting a lamp. And it has a big drawer where we can hide all kinds of junk. Its one redeeming quality is that it does hold some memories for me—Grandma kept her playing cards, note pads, crossword puzzles, cigarettes, and other miscellanea in that drawer. Nothing special, but reminders of her daily life.

And finally, the Stanley end table. But not as in Stanley the furniture company. As in Stan, my mom’s ex-boyfriend. It too has a simulated wood grain finish. But instead of wood veneers like Grandma’s table, it’s made of particle board. And it comes apart. By design. Since Mom’s been married to Frank for almost 17 years, she must’ve gotten this table about 20 years ago. And I’ve probably had it for ten of those years. Who knows how long Stan had it before that, but there’s no doubt that it was past its prime before it ever entered our family.

So Stan, do you want your table back?

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