A couch for Dr. Evil

This is my aunt Jacquie (right), posing with my Mom on the day of her 60th birthday. She is an amazing woman, has raised three spectacular kids, and (being an English PhD) regularly policesĀ the grammar on this very blog (all while being its staunch supporter and enthusiastic reader as well). The celebrations were so much fun, and a lot of friends and family came down to party Friday night and all day Saturday.

I have lots of pictures to share from these two days, but I thought I’d start with some very important ones.

What is my cousin June holding . . . ?

It appears to be an ornately decorated box.

Yes. In fact, it’s a contribution box for a very important cause.

This brilliant brainchild of my cousins was passed around to the party goers as the day progressed. Are you confused? Muddling about in a cloud of incomprehension?

Let’s review the evidence, and everything will become clear:

Here’s the living room. Yes, very tasteful, very classic in appearance. But not exactly . . . lounge worthy. I mean, can you picture a pile of cousins and grandkids in PJ’s just hangin’ loose on these marvelous pieces of antique furniture?

I didn’t think so.

Eleanor agrees–completely unacceptable. We want comfort.

We want to slouch. We want to snooze. We want to hang our limbs all over this place. But the scrolly bits of ornate wood keep getting in the way.

I’ll give you further evidence. Using my spy-skills, I witnessed the following conversation between aunt Jacquie and a distraught female guest. I should note that I have no idea who this woman is (dear Mystery Woman: I hope you don’t mind being blogged about)–this is just cold, hard reporting, folks.

Strange woman: You know, I really enjoyed my visit, except that after sitting on your living room furniture for an hour or two, I think I might need back surgery.

Aunt Jacquie: Oh no, you poor thing! I’m so sorry!

Aunt Jacquie: You know, now that I think about it, I can’t even count the number of medical complications that furniture has caused over the years . . . lemme see . . . one (a sprained back), two (a herniated disc), three (a stomachache–though that may have been from all the meringue) . . .

Aunt Jacquie: I mean, I know that whenever I sit in my furniture I always get this cramp . . . it starts along my neck right here and moves into my shoulder and upper back . . . it’s really quite painful.

Case closed! We can’t have Aunt Jacquie in pain and getting cramps in her neck for the rest of her life. That just wouldn’t do.

And just when I thought this little manifesto was about wrapped up, I called out to my husband . . .

“Hmmm . . . should I include this picture of you on the couch? I don’t know, it’s kind of dark and . . . you know, you don’t really look that uncomfortable.”

“Well that’s because I didn’t think it was really that uncomfortable. I mean, the living room looks really nice,” he said.

I stared at him blankly. He continued:

“She has a beautiful living room.”

“But . . . but . . . ” I spluttered. “You’re not on our side?”

“I don’t know, her furniture looks really pretty.”

“Pretty? Pretty!?!? But that means . . . you’re with the opposition!” I cried. “Dang it,” I muttered, “I guess I’ll have to include your views in my blog post.”

Everyone else, I hope you align yourselves with the correct side in this matter. Over and out.

19 thoughts on “A couch for Dr. Evil

  1. Joanne

    Comfort trumps pretty any day. That’s what I tell myself when I laze about in sweats and sneakers with my hair pulled back in a ponytail all day. I mean. Stilettos are nice. But who has the ankle strength for such things?

    I’m so on your side.

    Reply
  2. 4littlefergusons

    Good bye, Dr. Evil, with your wooden dangers all about! I’d hate to see someone lose an eye on that particularly sharp point on top! The great grandchildren will thank you…..

    BTW, Jenna, I am sure you have heard this all your life, but….
    YOU LOOK JUST LIKE YOUR MOM! :)
    (I too have heard that my whole life, after a while you just shrug and get used to it, right?!)

    Reply
  3. Jacquie Erwin

    The couch fund worked (also, all my old loose change that Erica and Kristen found and is now in the Anti-Iron Maiden Furniture Fund), and soon Uncle Sam and I shall start The Great Couch Quest. He gets final say on comfort; I on aesthetics. I am glad Adam appreciates lovely Victorian furniture too….but then look at what he is studying! At least I advanced from Austen’s era to mid-Victorian (mostly because Victorian was affordable when we got married and we inherited that love seat originally owned by my husband’s great great grandfather.).
    It IS possible to combine beauty and comfort even in clothes; of course, we put on attitudes with what we wear, and how we create through decor and furniture our homes reflects our values, tastes and the social mores of the times–past and present depending on what we value!
    Great writing as ever, Jenna!

    Reply
  4. okielicious

    Love that antique couch, but I vote for comfort. We have one of those chaise lounge attached type sofas — cute as all get out, but we STILL haven’t found a way to sit in it and RELAX, even with a multitude of pillows stuffed behind our backs. Great for sleeping though — we call it the “nap couch” — but definitely TRY before you BUY!

    Reply
  5. Jacquie Erwin

    Oops–my bad writing is revealed above: The final full sentence should read: ” and we create through decor and furniture a sense of our values, tastes, the social mores of the times –past and present depending on what we hold dear, including history and family history. Ah, the striking of the post key too quickly strikes a blow against good writing once again!

    Reply
      1. Jacquie Erwin

        It’s an idea….but time and the hours runs through the roughtest day as Macbeth reminds us. My time and hours run all too quickly. Still, after seeing the redwing blackbird chase the deer away today, I am half tempted! I would need your lessons and counsel thoughl!

  6. Wendy

    Personally, I LOVE the furniture. It is beautiful. Lounge in another room….. drink tea and enjoy refined conversation in the parlor. I found that less than comfortable furniture was very good to have when raising a bunch of ruffians. They retreated to the family room and there remained one room in which I could greet guests.

    Reply
  7. Veronica

    I have to agree with your hubby, though I’m surprised HE’S the one defending the pretty furniture and not the females! Hello, we kill ourselves in heels b/c they’re beautiful, not because they’re comfortable. Since when does comfort take precedence over appearance where furniture is concerned? šŸ˜‰

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  8. June

    To further clarify the issue: I agree that the fancy furniture is lovely, and I cannot imagine my mother’s house without the loveseat and ladies chairs. However, the problem is not so much that she HAS these pieces, it’s that she has NOTHING more comfortable. Anywhere. Seriously. Her metal patio furniture is really the most comfortable in the house. And that’s not even actually IN the house. We’re not looking to replace the lovely, simply add function to pretty… That room has plenty of space for both. See? No need for disagreement, here. We can all get along, while comfortably seated and looking at the pretty furniture.

    Reply
      1. Twinky

        Although, June, I must say that the blue barrel back chair is quite comfy!! Unfortunately it is the only piece, and when there are multitudinous people wanting to sit, only one gets that privileged satisfaction. Yes, indeed, that beautiful furntiture can be combined with more comfortable furniture, and it is a win-win situation!!

        And Jenna, you did a spectacular job narrating the exchange between Jacquie and “the mystery wonman”. Well done, my dear!!

      2. Twinky

        …after all, Erica, that victorian love seat played a significant role in your life…. at least photographically! The heart shaped back was very appropriate for the pictures of you and Dave as a newly engaged couple!! Prettiness is not all bad!!

  9. Twinky

    Also, the first picture is a tribute to the Three Sisters colors as expressed in the festive beverage pitchers: pink, yellow and blue.

    And thank you to the post-er who says Jenna looks like me…. I take that as a compliment!! =)

    Reply

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