Tuesday, January 17, 2017

My Grandfather's Chair

For a while I've been the keeper of my grandfather's chair.  It's a Morris chair, and for the longest time it was a feature of my father's father's living room.  I always liked the wide arms on it, and the iron rod in the back which is used to set the back's reclining angle.  Grandpa's living room was dark, usually with a fire set in the wide hearth... although the hearth is probably narrower than I'm remembering it... anyway, changing the angle and moving the iron rod was one of those "look what you can do with old peoples' stuff" things that fascinated me as a six-year-old.  I think the metallic clank of the rod against the curling brackets was part of the appeal.

My folks had the chair for a few decades, and they've had to fix it up some.  The springs in the seat are great coiled things held together with bailing wire and metal clips which sometimes work free, which results in the cushion sinking below the rim of the chair's frame.  For some time it lived in their garage until I rescued it.  The chair dominates out living room, and I wrote from it before the Christmas season rearranged everything.

One of the difficulties writing in the chair is that it was designed for people shorter than I am, and siting in it wasn't the most ergonomic configuration for my legs or back.  Recently, I went to the hardware store and purchased some bed frame raisers.  They're blocky and ugly, but they brought the seat of the chair up about a half a foot.  When I sat down, the chair was wonderful:  with my knees level with my hips, I could relax into the chair with my hands resting comfortably on its arms.  All that's missing is a triangular wedge of a pillow to provide some lower lumbar support.

The only other difficulty is that -- well -- now that the legs are extended, the chair looks like a throne.    Mark ribs me about it only a little.   I'll have to think of something creative to do with a skirting so the legs and the extenders aren't so prominent.  
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