Paint, wayward infant formula, White-Out spill, French vanilla ice cream shooters, snot balloons, ecru paintball, weeping egg white, angry pigeon sticky—I’m not sure what all was blotched on that used chair, but I sat on it anyway. Once upon a time, the chair had been velvety periwinkle, with a light wood frame. Now it was a pattern I named Bad Dairy Calico.
I sat on this chair. I rocked it forward and back to test the chair’s sturdiness. Then I hoisted it back up to the high shelf and gave my butt a cootie-cleansing shimmy.
I wondered if there was some kind of five-second rule I could apply to my germy pants. I guess it would have to be a 25-second rule because I'd tried to be ok with really sitting on the mystery-spackle, not just hovering.
Remember that episode of Aqua Teen Hunger Force when Master Shake sits on a dirty toilet seat and becomes infected with mind-controlling hypnogerms?
I was a little afraid. I longed for a paint roller soaked in hand-sanitizing gel that I could casually apply to my general buttock area in the store parking lot before I sat in my car.
Problem was that earlier that afternoon I’d spied the perfect dining table in a fancy furniture store’s clearance basement. Before I made my move, I needed to weigh the cost. I cruised a “gently used” furniture shop, which didn’t have the kind of round, white, retro-yet-futuro table I wanted.
One thrift store housed the sad, stained chair. The second one had Gospel praise music on full blast, and I knew one of the songs from my Evangelical heyday. The Gospel praise store did have a funky old dinette set. The manager observed my Giddyap Rollicking phase of chair testing, which advanced this time to Dreamy Repose. He offered to knock 10% off the price. One of the turquoise vinyl chairs wouldn’t have passed Giddyap. But the dealbreaker was the chair with split vinyl patched with a thick stripe of clear tape.
I’ve passed through a new threshold in my life. I can’t do clear tape as a furniture repair strategy anymore.
I’m a card-carrying Thrippie, so little hearts cascade from my eyes when I see “clearance” or “seconds,” “irregular,” or, lo, “thirds.”
But the Thrippie creed involves calculating an item’s real value. Will I use it? And, considering my few homemaking/husbandry skills, does this item work? It was difficult to pare down my belongings before this move to Spokane; will this item just rebuild my Beloved Stores of Clutter?
And, newest criterion: Do I love it? Will this shirt/chair/dish/boondoggle keychain make me happy to see it in my apartment every day, especially those cold cloudy days that are my Pacific Northwest destiny?
So I bought the white round retro spaceship dining table and two decommissioned floor-model chairs from the fancy store’s clearance basement. They look great. And I did buy a white retro diner-ish chair from the Gospel store. The chair is discolored, but still cushy but svelte, and it fits right in with its fancier chair cohort.
I’ve detected no ill effects from sitting on the Throne of Filth. Maybe love is good for the immune system.