Sunday, August 8, 2021

"My Chair, Lady"

By Jerry Zezima

As a guy who takes most things sitting down, I couldn’t stand the thought that my favorite chair had hit bottom.

But that’s what happened recently when the seat of power was pulled out from under me for a major reupholstering job.

My throne (the only one in the house not situated in the bathroom) had seen better days. And nights, because that was when I used it the most, mainly to watch movies or sporting events, the endings of which I seldom saw because I had dozed off while holding popcorn or beer that slipped from my grasp and — you guessed it — spilled all over the chair.

But that’s not the main reason why this mangy piece of furniture, which is 25 years old (175 in human years), needed repair.

The primary cause of its pathetic condition was feline frolic.

We used to have cats. Before they went to that big litter box in the sky, the destructive demons used the chair as their own personal scratching post. The poor thing looked like it had been attacked by a mountain lion in heat.

My wife, Sue, covered the chair with a chair cover (sorry if I am getting too technical) and made me move it to the living room, where I was banished when I didn’t want to watch one of the approximately 700 home improvement shows that Sue loves to watch while seated comfortably in her newer, much nicer chair in the family room.

In fact, Sue’s chair used to be mine. It’s the latest in a series of seats that were originally mine but fell into the hands (or paws) of various humans (or animals), including my wife, our daughters, our grandchildren, the aforementioned cats and even a dog that would plop herself down in my former chair and either watch Animal Planet or fall asleep while snoring and drooling, probably because she had seen me do the same thing.

Finally, Sue decided that my present chair — which used to be mine, was taken over by her, then went to the dog and, since the purchase of two better chairs, is now mine again — needed an upgrade.

So she called Loli’s and Carlos’ Upholstery. The day after Sue and I visited the store to pick out new upholstery (Sue picked it out while I stood there like a bobblehead doll, silently nodding and smiling at her choice), Loli’s and Carlos’ son, Danny, and son-in-law, Juan, came over to pick up the chair.

“It’s old,” Danny said after Sue had taken off the cover to reveal leg wounds, arm scars and cushion lumps.

“I’m old, too,” I remarked. “Will I get reupholstered?”

“No, you’re in pretty good shape,” said Danny, adding that guys often lose their chairs to their wives and kids. “And,” he noted, sizing me up as a geezer, “their grandkids.”

“Have you guys ever lost your chairs?” I asked.

“Yes,” Danny answered.

“Yes,” repeated Juan.

Then the terrific twosome carried my chair out the front door, lifted it into the company truck and drove away.

A week or so later, they were back with a chair I didn’t recognize.

“Wow!” Sue exclaimed.

“Is this the same one?” I wondered.

“Yes,” Juan said.

“My father reupholstered it,” Danny told us.

“Does he have a chair?” I asked.

“He has a recliner,” Danny replied. “He reupholstered it, too.”

“Has your mother taken it?” I wanted to know.

“No,” Danny said. “He won’t let her.”

I looked at Sue, who didn’t look back. But she did sit in the repaired chair, which sported beige upholstery with a diamond pattern.

“Now it’s comfortable,” Sue declared. “No more sagging in the middle of the cushion.”

When Sue got up, I sat down.

“This is great!” I said. “I may sit here all day.”

I stayed in the chair after Danny and Juan left.

“Is there a game tonight or a movie?” Sue asked. “Are you going to have popcorn? Be careful! Don’t drop kernels so they get wedged under the cushion.”

“Do I have to wear clean pants?” I inquired.

“Yes,” said Sue. “And no greasy hands!”

“OK,” I said. “Just don’t take my chair. It’s the one thing I won’t stand for.”

Copyright 2021 by Jerry Zezima

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