When people drive by my house (on a busy street in the highlands) they must think I am mentally ill, a hoarder, to be specific. There is junk stacked to the ceiling in groups. JunkJenga, I call it…because on occasion … Continue reading
I know every corner of my side of town and being completely uninspired, I had grown tired of the curbside freebies (AKA free furniture) on the south side of town where I live. I could close my eyes and tell you where just about every broken down sofa and jacked up Sauder desk was in the 33813 zip code. I grabbed me a Big Gulp and headed the rig north to the “country”. You see, I was raised on the north side where people drank sweet tea and had a chicken or six pecking about the yard. Growing up, I thought nothing of going outside to run to Publix and having to knock a chicken or two off of the Ford. I mean, seriously, didn’t everybody leave for the grocery with a few foul flinging off the Ford after throwing it into second gear? That’s normal, right? Any who, I trucked out to the country and started cruising through a neighborhood that had only a few trucks up on blocks and either a busted coke machine on the front porch or a toilet fashioned into a mailbox stand/planter. Sure enough, it wasn’t long before I spotted potential loot: a 70′s headboard in really good shape! The best part was that it was roadside, propped neatly against the telephone pole waiting for a ride back to civilization. With the lonely stretch of road flanking my junk salvation I could take my time getting the piece into my car. Sturdy and straight, the design was what I like to call “Redneck Gothic” which means it was a staple in country homes for twenty years with it’s medium brown tone, heavy shellacked surface, and chunky profile. Sure enough, like citifolk have a scent, the homeowner comes flying up behind me on his four-wheeler named “Bootleg Monkey”. (It was airbrushed on the side, probably at the tractor- pull). Cleetus said, “Hey ma’am, you takin’ that?” I tried to act all nonchalant and said, “It alright with you?” he replied, “Don’t matter to me none, you aint got a fancy one at home?” I told him that my intension was to paint it, distress it and write on it with sleep quotations. He grinned (country people grin, not smile). and said, “Shoot fire, girl! That thang is already distressed! See how the corners are all worn down? Don’t you nevermind that, those handcuffs didn’t hurt Claudine OR her SISTER and they won’t hurt you neither!”
For a moment I paused to consider what he had just said to me. I looked at the ground and hesitated before I burst into action like my ass was on fire!
I don’t remember the speed or strength it took to get the headboard into the car and speed off like a church lady with the runs but I sure left Cleetus in a dust cloud. After I had put a few miles behind me I giggled, proud of my acquisition and rescue and thankful that I had not been born a Claudine or a Claudine’s sister. Here is a pic of the finished project which I have named “Claudine’s Hitching Post”
My oldest son turned 15 and I was forced to take him to the DMV in Armpit, Florida because I procrastinated and didn’t make an appointment at the “good” DMV where some of the people actually have teeth. As we took the 20 mile drive through the cow pastures and the bait shops of central Florida, we chatted. Well, I chatted, he sat with his “beats” (AKA= fancified headphones) on. On the way there I spotted a semi trailer parked in an empty lot with a bunch of old furniture lined up on wood pallets. A blue dresser stuck out to me like a turd in a punchbowl and I made a mental note to distract the teen on the way home and pull in. We were just getting to a good clip on the way back from YEE-HAWville when I spotted the junk again. Faster than a fat girl eats a ho-ho I whipped in to the lot. Trying not to act overly eager, I meandered around, purposely avoiding the blue dresser. Finally, I made my way over to this filthy, chippy, old robin’s egg blue dresser that had no knobs left on it. The holes where the knobs once belonged were rigged with old telephone cable that you could use to open the drawers…classy. I was in love. All of a sudden this tiny boy jumped out and said, “I am your salesman!” I Suwanee, it scared me so bad that I clutched my chest and damned near fell over the pallet to my death! There he stood, this little boy, all enthusiastic and certainly had to be older than his stature led on. Someone (I hope not him) had pinned at least 8 old brooches onto his too-tight little granimals shirt. I played along and asked the price on the blue dresser (now named Midway). He said he didn’t know but he would take me to his PawDaddy. WTH???? I was hoping that PawDaddy didn’t mean that it was his Grandpa AND his Daddy! Little boy showed me to an umbrellaed table where a huge toothless man, a skinny, hairless woman with the BIGGEST bugged eyes I have ever seen and a real nice looking strapping young man sat smoking cigarettes. This nice looking guy stood up and, looking like a Hollister model, wiped his hand on his shirtless abs and flashed his cobalt blue eyes at me and grinned. He had 3 teeth. TOTAL! I know this for a fact because he told me. He also told me that he, “Ain’t had a decent bath in a week.” I’m like, “Hey smooth talker, you keep on like that and I just might have to hook you up with the girl at work that I hate”. I asked if he would load the dresser in my car so he went to the semi trailer and pulled out a dude to help him that was wearing a Stone Cold Steve Austin shirt and the shortest cutoffs I have seen on a guy. They loaded up Midway and I went on my way…back to town…to civilization. On the way home my teen complained about the stop we had made…but I didn’t have to remind him to brush his teeth that night!
I have a confession about my addiction.. it morphs and shows up in many forms. Sometimes I get on an enamel ware kick, or a chicken wire frenzy. Other times I start twitching for burlap and linen. One category of … Continue reading