Reupholstering my Life


Where Have I Been?

I spent a fair amount of time in fabric stores yesterday: bolts of chintz and dingle-ball displays, semi-snippy clerks with yardsticks and sharp scissors. Fabric stores are the purview of women who are freshening their lives, by reupholstering their armchairs. You do not see businessmen in Boca Bargoons frowning over the crab bedecked linen, wondering if the pattern is too busy for bed bolsters. You see an army of purposeful women, marching toward their favorite color palate with swatches cut from magazines or the undersides of seat cushions.


In the bathroom of Calico Corners there is an old, claw footed tub with the side cut off and decorative, pillows propped along the back: a makeshift chaise-lounge. I picture some crazed decorator with a reciprocating saw and a face guard, “We need more whimsical venues for paisley Euros! More back-to-school, houndstooth backrest tableaus!”


It’s like the world has gone mad…


When I get to the simply named Upholstery (this owner is after my own heart – no fancy handles like Cushion Crafters or Damask Be-Deckers), there are women sitting on small stools leafing through booklets of fabrics. Linen Love springs to mind, but all the book titles imply we will become a little too fond of our refurbished settees when they are done.


None of this has anything to do with alcoholism. Or recovery. Although the pun is way too good to let slide: I am recovering cushions, after all… It doesn’t even have to do with women who have too much time and money on their hands – in fact my envy of them knows no bounds… It has to do with getting out more, joining the living (even when some of the living should be shot dead for making a waggish seating arrangement out of a tub…).


If the opposite of addiction is connection, and the greatest detriment to recovery is isolation, then I say, “Bring it on!”  Bring on all of life’s wonderful, crazy, ironic, refurbished day to day. I feel a bit like someone who’s woken from a coma. Every experience feels new and more modern than I expected. Even a fabric store…


But I have to know, was I drunk the day someone decided it was okay to make a daybed out of an old bathtub, instead of calling JUNK-R-US?


Today I’m not drinking because I’m taking a class where we’re making potpourri baskets out of spittoons!

How come you’re not drinking?